Santa Claus will make his debut appearance in downtown Barnesville Wednesday night at the annual Illumination Celebration.The event promises a festive atmosphere for the Man in Red’s arrival with gingerbread houses in business storefronts, music, handbells, a reading of The Christmas Story and prayer.Santa will pose for pictures with kids at Salon on Main and businesses will be open for Christmas shopping.Prayers of Thanksgiving will be the focus at the Community Thanksgiving Service which precedes the celebration at 6:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church on Thomaston Street. The service is presented by the Lamar County Ministerial Association.A community choir directed by Rev. John Cox of FUMC will perform as will a trio from Antioch Baptist Church consisting of Margaret McCook, Jeremy Rooks and Grant Turner. Wayne Cook will serve as organist.Local pastors Rev. Craig Ogletree, Rev. Jeff Morgan, Rev. Ken Ross, Rev. Steve Pattison, Rev. Garth Foster and Elder Leslie Holmes will take part in the program.An offering will be collected with the proceeds going to the Empty Stocking Fund.After the church service, attendees will move downtown for Santa’s arrival.
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