Get in the holiday spirit Sunday during Victorian Christmas in Nevada City | TheUnion.com

Get in the holiday spirit Sunday during Victorian Christmas in Nevada City

Shoulder to shoulder people, viewed from the balcony of McGees Annex, enjoy the good weather during a Victorian Christmas in this 2003 archive photo.

Victorian Christmas kicks off its 41st year this Sunday in Nevada City — and it looks like the weather will cooperate.

The National Weather Service is predicting a partly sunny day, with a high near 54 degrees, for the street fair that will take over the historic downtown's streets.

It's a chance for locals and visitors alike to enjoy street vendors hawking their wares and lamp-lit streets filled to overflowing with the holiday spirit. At locations throughout downtown, singers, bagpipers, brass bands and strolling minstrels provide Christmas music.

Nevada City's famous Walking Christmas Tree can be found, along with her companion, the Toy Soldier.

New this year is a photo booth where visitors can don silly hats and other gear, located in the Three Forks parking lot on lower Commercial Street.

As with years past, there will be hot roasted chestnuts and horse-drawn carriage rides, promised Nevada City Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Cathy Whittlesey.

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"And the chamber will be selling hot toddies on the street — hot buttered rum and hot apple cider with rum," she said.

The annual family tradition started in 1978 and initially was just on Wednesdays, Whittlesey said.

"We added a Sunday, and it was so successful that we decided to do it all the Sundays in December," she said. Victorian Christmas now takes place two Wednesday evenings and three Sunday afternoons this month.

Whittlesey said over the years Victorian Christmas has become a "real signature event" for Nevada County. Sundays are especially popular with visitors, she said, adding that Wednesdays can be easier for locals to access.

Regardless of the date, Whittlesey urged anyone coming to Victorian Christmas to make use of the shuttle.

"It is difficult to find a place to park," she said. "We will have some disabled parking (on Spring and Union streets) but they fill up fast."

Last year, Whittlesey said, there wasn't enough space on the shuttles to accommodate the crowds. This year, she ordered larger buses. And this year, the trail to the stoplight from the Rood Center parking lot has been lighted so that people who opt to walk to Victorian Christmas from there can cross to East Broad Street safely.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at lizk@theunion.com.

Know & Go

What: Victorian Christmas

When: 1:30-6 p.m. Sundays, Dec. 9, 16 & 23; 5-9 p.m. Wednesdays Dec 12, Dec. 19

Where: Downtown Nevada City

For info and schedule: http://www.nevadacitychamber.com/nevada-city-events/victorian-christmas/

Parking and shuttle: Drop your group off in town and then park your car and catch the shuttle from the Nevada County Government Center, 950 Maidu Ave. Shuttle costs $5 for adults and children 15 and over. Children under 15 ride free. Shuttle hours are 4:30-9:30 p.m. Wednesdays and noon-6:30 p.m. Sundays.

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