Christmas in Olde Ballinger Nov 28

Bill Hancock
Runnels County Register
Moonlight Madness kicks off at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, November 24.


Ballinger's annual shopping celebration, Moonlight Madness, will kick off at 5 p.m on Tuesday, November 24. The event will be followed by Christmas in Olde Ballinger at 10 a.m. on Saturday, November 28. Sidewalk vendors will be set up both days and all of the local merchants will be open.

According to Carolyn Slaughter, the owner of Curiosities and a member of the Chamber of Commerce, the annual event has been around at least 35 years, "I remember it back in 1985. But it started well before that. It used to be at the Runnels County courthouse square. One year the event was canceled so the local merchants got together and decided to set up the next one themselves."

The event has vendors from all over who come to set up shop on the sidewalks and sell their wares. All of the local merchants stay open until 8:00 p.m., or even later if customers are still browsing. Last year several merchants were open until well after 9 p.m.

The onset of COVID has affected everything in the country, but Slaughter says that it shouldn't affect people who want to come out shopping, "People can stay out shopping at the sidewalk vendors if they don't feel comfortable going into the stores. Many of the vendors have been coming here for a couple of decades and have loyal customers who come out every year to shop."

The Saturday after Moonlight Madness, November 28th, will be the annual Christmas in Olde Ballinger. The festivities will start with the Christmas parade at 10 a.m. Vendors will once again be set up on the sidewalks, beginning around 9:30 a.m. Word on the street from several reliable sources say that Kris Kringle will be out and about.

Slaughter said that there will be more than just shopping and a parade, there will be several prizes awarded in a raffle, "Every merchant donates a $25 gift certificate. Customers can register in every story. The will be 4 winners drawn. Each winner will receive 3 gift certificates for a total of $75." Slaughter's store, Curiosities, will have fudge, candy, crackers and special promotions. This year they will also have come cookies that they haven't had before, "Each and every store will have refreshments and do their own sales promotions. Some stores will even have raffles of their own."

Mooonlight Madness: Tuesday, November 24, 5 p.m. - 8 p.m. (or later).

Christmas in Olde Ballinger: Saturday, November 28, 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Christmas parade begins at 10 a.m. Santa is rumored to be in attendance.