The Killeen-Fort Hood area has a number of annual events and traditions that are community favorites every December, and this week, many of them return. The Tri-County Toy Run, KristKindlMarkt, Salado Christmas Stroll, Carlson Christmas Light Show, and Christmas on the Chisholm Trail are all happening soon, to name a few. Read on for details on these events and more.
The 26th annual Krist Kindl Markt Shopping Bazaar will be from 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 3, 5 to 10 p.m. Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Dec. 5, and noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 6 at the Copperas Cove Civic Center, 1206 W. Avenue B. There will be vendors, shopping, food trucks, light displays, Santa, and more available at this free event.
Mayor Jose Segarra will light the 50-foot silhouette Killeen Christmas Tree at 6 p.m. Dec. 3 at the Killeen Community Center, 2201 E. Veterans Memorial Blvd. The public is invited to drive in, park, and watch from their personal vehicles.
Holiday Under the Stars will be from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Dec. 4 at the Lions Club Park Hike & Bike Trail, 1700 E. Stan Schlueter Loop. There will be light displays lining the trail, holiday music, food trucks, hot cocoa, and treats available at this free event.
Vive Les Arts Theatre, 3401 S. W.S. Young Drive, Killeen, is hosting its performance of “A Christmas Carol” Dec. 4- 6. Go to www.vlakilleen.org for tickets and showtimes.
The 2020 Carlson Christmas Light Show will be every night from 7 to 9 p.m. until Dec. 23 and from 6 p.m. to midnight Dec. 24 and 25 at 428 Winter Sun Drive, Harker Heights. Visitors must stay in their vehicles to view the synchronized 45-minute light show, beginning at the top of the hour, and can hear the accompanying music by tuning into FM 88.1 with their car radios. Go to https://www.facebook.com/carlsonlightdisplay or http://carlsonlights.com/ for more information and updates.
Local restaurants and businesses in the downtown Temple district are participating in the First Friday monthly event from 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 4. For a list of participating businesses and specials, go to https://bit.ly/308Blz3.
The annual Festival of Trees, with the theme of “Christmas Sweet Shop,” will be from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Dec. 4 at the Killeen Civic and Conference Center, 3601 S. W.S. Young Drive. There will be raffles and other events to help raise money for scholarships for the Central Texas area.
Fort Hood USO is hosting 12 Days of USO Holiday Cheer, a free drive-thru event with music and displays, from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 1- 12 at Building 121, 761st Tank Battalion Ave., Fort Hood.
The City of Belton and the Downtown Belton Business Alliance are hosting the annual Christmas on the Chisholm Trail event from noon to 7 p.m. Dec. 5 along Central Avenue and East Street near the downtown courthouse square. There will be vendors and booths spaced apart to allow for social distancing, but visits with Santa and the annual parade will not be occurring this year.
CASA of Bell and Coryell Counties is hosting a Kris Kringle Virtual Fundraiser from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Dec. 5 live on its Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/casabellcoryell. The online, live silent auction will feature items ranging from $50 to $2,000 and proceeds will benefit the organization’s efforts.
Registration for riders and volunteers for the 28th annual Tri-County Toy Run will begin at 10 a.m. Dec. 6 at American Legion Post 133, 1300 S. 25th St., Temple, where breakfast will be served. An escorted ride will depart at 1 p.m. for the 55-mile trip to Putters ‘N’ Gutters, 2341 U.S. Highway 281, Lampasas. Cost of participation in the toy run is either a $10 donation or a new toy. T-shirts will be available for sale at the start point for this rain or shine event.
The City of Harker Heights Fire Department is collecting new and unwrapped gifts for elementary through high school-aged children. Gifts for all ages are welcome, including games, puzzles, electronics, books, toys, and more. Participants can drop off gifts through Dec. 17 at the Harker Heights Activities Center, 400 Indian Trail. For more info call 254-953-5493 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The City of Temple is hosting its 74th annual Christmas Parade at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 7 in downtown Temple. This year will be different, as the parade itself is stationary, with visitors able to drive by and view it in their own vehicles. The parade route will start at West Central Avenue and South 11th Street and will wind through the Santa Fe Plaza before concluding at South Ninth Street.
The City of Killeen is currently hosting its annual Outdoor Decorating Contest and is accepting entries until Dec. 7. Killeen residents that wish to enter the contest should go to www.KilleenTexas.gov/Rec to submit their application with a photo of their festively-decorated homes by Dec. 7 to be considered. The public will vote on their favorites through an online survey Dec. 8- 15. First, second, and third place winners will be announced Dec. 18.
The 60th annual Salado Christmas Stroll will be from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from through Dec. 20 along Main Street in downtown Salado. There will be live events, extended holiday shopping hours, music, food, and more available.
Nature in Lights, the 5.5-mile-long drive-thru holiday light display, will be open every day from 5:30 to 11 p.m. through Jan. 3, including Christmas Eve and Christmas. Santa’s Village will be open Nov. 19 to Dec. 6 and Dec. 10- 24 and will feature vendors, crafts, and more. Gate fees are $20 for cars, minivans, and pickups; $25 for limos, 15-passenger vans, and RVs; $55 for 24-passenger vans; and $80 for 47-passenger van or larger bus. Nature in Lights is at the Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area, 7999 Sparta Road, Belton.
The Mayborn Science Theater at Central Texas College features a variety of laser shows, movies, and other events based on astronomy. For show descriptions, a full schedule, and ticket prices go to www.starsatnight.org or call 254-526-1800.
Every Sunday morning, a free group run is held at various locations. Go to the group’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/klnrunning, to see where they are meeting this week.
The Competitive Edge Girls Basketball Camp will be from 2 to 6 p.m. Dec. 6 at the Killeen Family Recreation Center, 1700 E. Stan Schlueter Loop. Coach Ashley Roberts will focus on ball handling, shooting, defense, and passing at this skills camp for girls ages 7 to 15 years old. Registration is $100 per player until Dec. 4, and can be completed online at https://apm.activecommunities.com/killeen/Activity_Search.
The Lonestar Soccer Mini-Camp will be from 9 a.m. to noon Dec. 12 and 13 at Lions Club Park, 1700 E. Stan Schlueter Loop, Killeen. Registration is open for U5- U15 boys and girls for $68 per participant, which includes a t-shirt. Go to https://lonestar-sc.typeform.com/to/e79bRGaf to register.
The Last Drive-In Picture Show, 2912 S. Highway 36, Gatesville, hosts a double-feature movie every night of the week. This week’s lineup, showing nightly from Dec. 3- 10 will be “The Croods: A New Age” at 7 p.m. and “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” at 8:30 p.m. Admission is $10 per car.
The Harker Heights Public Library, 400 Indian Trail, is hosting a Virtual Holiday Crafting event all day Dec. 5 live on its Facebook page, www.facebook.com/harkerheightspubliclibrary/. The library also posts a variety of livestreams, children’s programs, story times, crafts, and other activities throughout the week. In-person visitors and curbside pickup are welcome from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
The Killeen Public Library hosts virtual story times, family-friendly activities, and crafts throughout the week on its Facebook page, www.facebook.com/KilleenLibrary/.The library will feature an online story time with Santa every Monday at 10 a.m. through the month of December. Curbside pickup is available at both Killeen Library locations from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Call the Main Library at 254-501-8991 or the Copper Mountain Branch Library at 254-501-7872 to schedule a pickup.
Lark and Owl Booksellers in Georgetown hosts a virtual Super Silly Story Time with Cassidy at 10 a.m. every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. The story times are livestreamed through the store’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/larkandowlbooksellers/.
Fire Street Pizza, 10310 Farm-to-Market 439 in Belton, is hosting free live music by Jennifer Pisarick from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 4, G. Samuels from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 5, and an acoustic show by Martian Folk from noon to 3 p.m. Dec. 6. Fire Street also hosts Finish the Lyrics Trivia from 6 to 9 p.m. every Thursday night. Participation is free.
O’Briens Irish Pub, 11 E. Central Ave., Temple, is hosting live music by Wrongway Jackson and Friends from 9 p.m. to midnight Dec. 4 and Dustin Brown and The Now from 9 p.m. to midnight Dec. 5. Seating is limited and tickets range from $14 to $42 and can be purchased on the show’s Eventbrite page. Call 254-295-0518 for more information.
Chupacabra Craft Beer and Salado Lonestar Winery, 401 S. Main St. in Salado, hosts free live music featuring a local artist from 7 to 11 p.m. every Friday and 8 p.m. to midnight every Saturday. Chupacabra also hosts a Pint Night with free live music starting at 4 p.m. every Thursday and a Trivia Night with a chance to win free prizes from 7 to 9 p.m. every Monday.
Dead Fish Grill, 2207 Lake Road in Belton, is hosting free live music by Megan Brucker at 6 p.m. Dec. 6 which will coincide with the viewing of the Parade of Lights on the lake from the restaurant’s patio. Ray Palousek will perform live Christmas music every Sunday in December form 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for Sunday Brunch.
Bold Republic Brewing Company, 206 N. Penelope St., Belton, is hosting Piano Bar Name-That-Tune Bingo at 7 p.m. Dec. 5. Each card is $2 and has an opportunity to win prizes.
The Downtown Killeen Farmers Market will be from 3 to 6 p.m. every Tuesday at the Killeen Community Center, 2201 E. Veterans Memorial Blvd. Local farmers, bakers, and specialty product makers will be selling their goods. Vendors interested in participating are encouraged to call Revitalization Planner Deirdre Kirk at 254-501-7641.
Barrow Brewing Company, 108 Royal St. in Salado, will host its Christmas Market from noon to 6 p.m. Dec. 5 and Dec. 12. There will be local crafters, growers, vendors, and live music at this event.
All-Year Pioneer Farmers Market is open every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in front of Tractor Supply Company at 2002 E. Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, weather permitting. Go to www.facebook.com/pioneerfarmersmarket or call Heike at 254-458-8223 for more information.
Museums and Exhibits
The Temple Railroad and Heritage Museum, 315 W. Avenue B, is hosting a Santa at the Depot: Drive-Thru Edition event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 5. Families can drive in front of the museum to see displays, wave at and drop off letters to Santa, and kids will receive a special goodie bag. The museum is open for in-person visitors from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Every first Saturday of the month, the museum hosts a free Family Day. Go towww.templerrhm.orgfor more information on new safety guidelines in place. Admission is $4 for adults, $3 for seniors, $2 for kids aged 5 to 12, and free for children under 5.
The Bell County Museum, 201 N. Main St. in Belton is open to in-person visitors from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. Groups with more than 10 people should call ahead at 254-933-5243. Admission is free.
The Mayborn Museum at Baylor University, 1300 S. University Parks Drive, Waco, is open for in-person visitors from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $9 for adults, $8 for seniors, and $7 for kids 12 and under. Masks are required and some hands-on exhibits will be disabled.
The Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum, 100 Texas Ranger Trail in Waco, is open for a limited number of in-person visitors daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults, $7 for seniors and military, $4 for kids 6 to 12, and kids under 6 are free.Go towww.texasranger.org for more information.
The Lampasas County Museum, 303 S. Western Ave., is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Call 512-556-2224 for more information.