Avalon will host three full days of holiday activities and events, including a visit from Santa and the lighting of the giant Christmas tree.

Avalon is keeping up with the Joneses during Thanksgiving weekend with three days of action-packed activities for all ages to enjoy. From a tree auction to character meet and greets, carnival rides, live music, festive refreshments and more, the whole family will have something to do.

Start the weekend early with treats and twinkling lights at the annual Festival of Trees starting 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 21, through noon Friday, Nov. 23, at The Whitebrier (260 20th St.). More than 40 trees and wreaths, decorated by local businesses, will be on display for auction and purchase.

Burn of those turkey calories with a fun run through town at the annual Turkey Trot 5K and 1.5-mile walk 10 a.m. Friday. Dress up your team with costumes, and enjoy a brisk run for a great cause — the Helen L. Diller Vacation Home for Blind Children. Register the day-of registration at the Avalon Community Hall (3001 Avalon Ave.).

The remainder of the weekend includes numerous other free activities for the entire family from festive treats and snacks to photo ops, face painting, hands-on crafts, activities and more. Look for special holiday performances by The Corner Boys & Co. throughout town.

All festivities lead up to the arrival of Santa at Veterans Plaza (2101-2117 Dune Drive) at 5 p.m. Friday for the official tree lighting ceremony.

More activities abound on “Snowfall Saturday” from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. such as carnival rides, live music by The Marinos, bouncehouses, rock walls and toboggan rides, sing-a-longs and the return of Santa himself for free photos.

A full schedule of events and more info is available at VisitAvalonNJ.com.

— Pamela Dollak

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