UTTOXETER children will be able to visit Father Christmas at a town centre museum as part of the year’s Cracker Night festivities.
The attractions for the annual event in December have been announced by the organisers the Uttoxeter Lions and Redfern’s Cottage: Museum of Uttoxeter Life will play a central role.
The annual appearance of Santa in his grotto is always a highlight for younger visitors to Uttoxeter’s Christmas Cracker night, which this year takes place on Thursday, December 13.
For the last few years he has taken up temporary residence in the town hall but this year though he’ll be at the other end of the town centre in Carter Street in Redfern’s Cottage.
It means he’ll have a more lavish grotto with an exciting entrance through a Victorian Christmas scene and it also means the town hall will have live entertainment, in addition to the usual craft stalls.
With late-night shopping and more than 30 stalls on the street and indoors, the organisers promise something for all the family and will offer prizes to the best decorated shops and shop and stall staff.
Cracker is a non-profit making Uttoxeter Lions event supported by the town council and Lions President Steve Shields (pictured) said they were happy to be involved.
He said: “This evening of late shopping and entertainment has become a much-loved local event and we’re happy to make it happen.
“For a lot of local people Christmas starts at Cracker Night. They seem to appreciate that it’s not too early in the month — this year it’s less than two weeks before the big day.” The final entertainment lineup is subject to change but as things stand Charli the Clown will be performing on the town hall stage at 7pm and 8pm.
Outside, the Uttoxeter Town Band will play at 6.30pm and 7.30pm with the Uttoxeter Morris Men dancing and bashing each other’s sticks at 7pm and 8pm.
Bands from across the area will be playing in Carter Street and other entertainment is due to include a fire-eater, juggler, puppet show and a street organ.
The fairground attractions in the market place will include two white-knuckle rides, a giant slide, a ferris wheel and children’s rides including a giant slide and bouncy castle.
There will be face painting, balloon shaping, donkey rides and a miniature train. Classic fire engines and emergency service vehicles will also be on display.
The food available ranges from hot dogs to a hog roast and from chestnuts to candy floss.
There’s still time for individual traders or charitable organisations to book a stall in the High Street or in the town hall. Prices start from £10. Anyone interested should contact Vin Bradley on 01889 563078.