Public Event

Holiday Villages Open House Weekend

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Date(s) - 12/02/2017 - 12/10/2017
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

The Varsity Center


?This year at The Varsity in Carbondale, three unique holiday villages will be displayed in the Gallery.

Make the Varsity a stop before and after Carbondale’s Dec. 2 Lights Fantastic Parade

CARBONDALE – The first Saturday in December will be a special night in Carbondale. Along with the lights and holiday spirit that will fill Illinois Avenue because of the annual Lights Fantastic Parade, The Varsity Center will be open and offering up some holiday spirit of its own.

The Varsity lobby has been and still is home to the tallest indoor tree in Carbondale, and this year, for the first time, the tree will be lighted. The venue will also be participating in the pre-parade Cookie Walk, offering free cookies and treats, hot cider and hot chocolate. The Cookie Walk begins at 4 p.m., and the tree lighting will take place at 4:30. The parade begins at 6 p.m.

The Varsity Gallery also will feature three fabulous holiday villages. Lee Fronabarger, Mike Hanes and Delores Koster are setting up their collections. Visitors are invited to take a stroll through the stylish winter wonderland at no charge before and after the parade; donations will be accepted.

When the last float has passed by, patrons are invited to take in the second night of The Stage Company’s production of “The Game’s Afoot; or Holmes for the Holidays,” a 1930s comical “whodunit.” The Stage Company is the resident theater at The Varsity. Tickets are $15 and $8. Go to for more information on the remaining performances.

If you miss the villages on Dec. 2, there will be a Holiday Villages Open House Weekend from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 9 and 10. The bar will be open offering beverages and sweet treats for adults and children. The Varsity Gallery also is open from 2 to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The Varsity is downtown Carbondale at 418 S. Illinois Ave. We will be busy throughout the month of December. To keep with all the events, go to and follow us at