By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor
For over 30 years, the tiny town of Rutledge has kicked off the holiday season with its annual Christmas in the Country event. This year, however, the town has decided to celebrate the start of the season a little bit differently. “We aren’t doing Christmas in the Country this year. We will be meshing that with the Town and Country Holiday Tour of Homes and the new Rutledge Holiday Market,” said City of Rutledge Assistant Clerk Ouida Autry. The Madison-Morgan Chamber of Commerce Holiday Tour of Homes and the Rutledge Holiday Market are scheduled for the weekend of December 3. “On December 3rd, 4th, and 5th we will have a couple of residences and churches participating in the tour of homes.
On the fourth and fifth we will also have the Rutledge Holiday Market,” Autry said. “That will include vendors, activities and musicians playing in the park. From what I understand, Santa will be set up at Yesterday’s Cafe on December 6 to take pictures.” Past Christmas in the Country events included activities like portraits with Santa and horse and carriage rides, and also featured local vendors, musicians and businesses who provided handmade décor, crafts, refreshments and antiques.
This year will be quite similar but will have new elements courtesy of the combination of kick-off events. Not only can event attendees enjoy tours of several historic churches, famous Broughton Hall, and the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center during daytime tour hours, but they can also experience a candlelight tour of the Joshua Hill House and the festively decorated Heritage Hall by participating in the Tour of Homes. The Red Doors Art Gallery and Studio will be just one of several local vendors providing unique items like Christmas gourds, hand-painted placemats and handmade Santa and Grinch figures for purchase at the Holiday Market. Christmas trees will also be available for purchase at the event.