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Arizona’s Christmas City Attracting Thousands

 Prescott’s reputation as one of the best communities to celebrate the Christmas holidays continues to grow. In November, Prescott was named “…one of America’s best small towns for Christmas” by the national publication Country Living.

Thousands of visitors are expected to join locals as they participate in the ever-expanding schedule of activities that caused then-Governor Rose Mofford in 1989 to name Prescott as “Arizona’s Christmas City.”


Concerts, Parade, Courthouse Lighting

People have a choice of two concerts on Friday, Dec. 1. One is “In the Christmas Mood” at 7 p.m. at the Elks Theatre in downtown Prescott; the other is “Let the Season Begin” at 7:30 p.m. in the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center (PAC).

Christmas celebrations continue Saturday, Dec. 2, when the streets surrounding Courthouse Square are packed with spectators for the 35th annual Christmas Parade. Beginning at 1 p.m., The “Cowboy Christmas”-themed parade will feature dozens of floats, bands, horses, decorated vehicles and scores of marching groups and organizations.

Later that evening, at 6 p.m., the switch will be turned on for 63rd annual lighting of the 101-year old Courthouse. That will be followed by caroling.

That same evening, Sharlot Hall Museum has a 6 p.m. open house, “Frontier Christmas,” featuring Living History interpreters sharing tales of Frontier Prescott.


Acker Night Tradition in 29th Year                                                                                  

More than 100 community musicians will perform in various businesses and shops in downtown Prescott beginning at 5:30 p.m., Friday Dec. 8. The event begins with a community sing-along of Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” Acker Night, made possible because of a bequest from the estate of pioneer Prescott businessman James Acker, is a fundraiser for art and music scholarships for qualified students.

That same weekend, Sunday, Dec. 10, the Prescott POPS Symphony Orchestra will perform traditional seasonal favorites during a 3 p.m. concert at the Yavapai College PAC.

Just a few days later, the heartwarming Irving Berlin “White Christmas, The Musical” will be performed at 7 p.m., Dec. 14-17, in the Yavapai College PAC.

Many other programs and performances will be ongoing during the holidays, especially in the many churches throughout the community. Those can be found by looking online or by checking local calendars.


New Year’s Eve Boot Drop

Thousands of revelers will gather in downtown’s Historic Whiskey Row for the 7th annual Boot Drop. The six-foot illuminated boot is slowly lowered down a 40-foot flagpole from atop the Palace Saloon and Restaurant. One participant said last year, “Even though it isn’t New York City and Times Square, I’ll bet we have more fun than they do.” QCBN


For more holiday event information, contact the Prescott Chamber of Commerce at 928-445-6000 or visit


By Ray Newton, QCBN


Photo by Ray Newton






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