Some of my best childhood memories are from Mike’s Farm and even as an adult, I’m still in love with this place. Although it’s a great place to visit any time of the year, it becomes even more magical in December. There is plenty to see and do when you arrive to Mike’s Farm, so plan for your family or group of friends to check out of reality and spend a few hours having fun. (You probably won’t get any cell reception, but take advantage of it.) Plan to stuff your face in the restaurant with Southern style food that gives Grandma a run for her money. When you finally force yourself to stop eating, go walk it off in the gift store – which FYI smells amazing. After stocking up on ornaments and candles, go into the bakery and get some sweets you’ll be craving later. Finish the night with the Festival of Lights Hayride. Yes, I said hayride…as in you’ll be sitting on hay in the back of a tractor so dress accordingly! Whether you’re 8, 80, or anywhere in between, you are sure to awe at the beautiful Christmas lights and live nativity. The hayride runs every night until December 23rd and the first ride goes out at 6pm. For More information visit their website www.MikesFarm.com
Photo Sources: (Top Left) MerryChristmasNC.com (Bottom Right) MikesFarm.com
2. Wrap Up & Enjoy A Parade
Although the Jacksonville Christmas Parade has already passed, you still have time to check out the Richlands Annual Lighted Christmas Parade! Family fun in downtown Richlands might just become your new tradition. This is taking place Saturday, December 12th, so hopefully you don’t already have plans! Go here for additional information.Richlands NC Chamber Website Oh, and don’t forget to bring your hot chocolate. (Unless it’s 70 degrees out, which is possible in Onslow County.)
3. Run in a 5K
We might as well work off some of that Thanksgiving dinner before we have another holiday feast, right? So if you’re one of those people who enjoy running (I envy you) – check out these two 5k opportunities in Onslow this month.
-Naughty & Nice 5K on Camp Lejeune on December 12th. Go here for additional information Link to Website
-Richlands Jingle Dash in Richlands on December 19th. Go here for additional information Link to Website
4. Go to Christmas Show!
Why not make some time to enjoy some live entertainment to get you into the holiday spirit?
Jacksonville Performing Arts is presenting “A Very Merry Military Christmas Variety Show” at the USO in Jacksonville. Shows will be on December 11th & 12th starting at 7pm. You can order tickets at www.JPANC.com Family Friendly. And 50% of the proceeds will be donated to the USO of NC Jacksonville.
5. Give Back
The holiday season is such a great time to give back to those in need. You’re already out and about shopping for family and friends, so why not think of others as well. There are so many things needed at different organizations in our community. Maybe pick up a few toys to donate to Christmas Cheer or you could even just take a few hours to donate your time. Clean out the kitchen cabinets and donate some food to soup kitchen. Since Santa’s about to bring you a bunch of gifts, why not clean out your closets and take what you no longer need to a shelter. They are always in need of bedding, clothes, hygiene items, cleaning supplies, etc. Even our Animal Shelter is requesting items for donation at this time. And if you have a friend or family member who literally has EVERYTHING, you could make a charitable donation in their name instead of a traditional gift. Here are some websites to help you get started on your journey to making a difference.
No matter what you decide to this holiday season, I hope it brings you joy. Make memories with the people you love and hold them tight. Don’t waste your time and energy stressing out over materialistic things this year and instead, make a vow to remember and share the message of what this holiday is really about – LOVE. I hope you all have an amazing December. Feel free to comment below some other ideas of things to do in our area this month, or let us know how you enjoyed any of the ones I’ve mentioned!