Christmas Santa

A little one visiting Saturday’s Joshua Christmas Parade & Holiday Shopping was unsure about sitting in Santa Claus’ lap. The event, which featured local business vendor booths staged at True Life Church before the parade through downtown.

From lighted Christmas parades to breakfast with Santa, cities across Johnson County have much to offer to those looking for special ways to celebrate the holiday.



The Cleburne Chamber of Commerce’s annual Lighted Christmas Parade is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 7.

The parade begins and First and Main streets, then turns left at Caddo Street, left on Brown Street, left on Main Street and then right on Westhill Drive.

This year’s theme is “Dreaming of a Bright Christmas.”

After-parade festivities at Market Square include vendors, pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus and a live nativity. The cost to take photos with Santa is $3 to use your personal camera or cellphone.

Throughout the holiday season, both of Cleburne’s live theater groups will present holiday plays. 

The Greater Cleburne Carnegie Players present “The Homecoming” at the Cleburne Conference Center. The original novel by Earl Hamner Jr. was inspiration for the much loved television series “The Waltons.” Performances are on Friday, Saturday and Sundays through Dec. 9. Kate Hicks directs, assisted by Jonathan Nash. For information, visit

Plaza Theatre Co. presents Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” through Dec. 22 at Dudley Hall. Shows are on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, with matinees on Saturday. 

Plaza Theatre Co. Main Street presents “Plaza Holiday FamJams” through Dec. 21. Shows are on Friday nights. 

Plaza Jr. presents “A Charlie Brown Christmas” Dec. 8-29. Shows are on Tuesdays and Saturdays. For information, visit

Songbird Live presents “Keene Worship Choir” at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 8. One hundred members strong, the Keene Worship Choir, under the direction of Juanita Browder, regularly thrills, excites and unites all worshipers of the Keene Seventh-day Adventist Church. Tickets are $20. For information, visit

The Brazos Chamber Orchestra Christmas Concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11 at First Baptist Church of Cleburne. For information, visit

Trail of Campfires — a guided tour of the life of Jesus along a trail of campfires — is from 6-9 p.m. Dec. 14-15 at the Johnson County Sheriff’s Posse, 1315 S. Main St. 

The free event features refreshments, hay rides, live Christmas music, Bethlehem petting zoo and a Christmas photo opportunity.For information, visit

The 27th annual Living Christmas Tree is at 7 p.m. Dec. 7, 7 p.m. Dec. 8 and at 3 p.m. Dec. 9 at Field Street Baptist Church, 201 N. Field St.

The church’s 75-voice choir will perform “One King,” under the direction of music minister Billy Woods.

The annual Candlewalk Historic Tour of Homes is from 1-8 p.m. Dec. 8. For tickets and information, call 817-645-0940.

The Cleburne Kiwanis Club and Camp Fire Tesuya are teaming up again for the Pancake Breakfast with Santa and Santa House on Dec. 8. The event is from 8-11 a.m. at Saint Mark United Methodist Church.

The Hearts of Gold King’s Daughters Circle hosts their annual Christmas House from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dec. 1 at Wright Plaza.

For information and a schedule of holiday events, visit



A Parade of Lights begins at 6 p.m. in Alvarado’s downtown square.

Guests can also visit with Santa Claus, enjoy delicious treats from local nonprofit groups and the animated decorations around the Downtown Square in Alvarado.



Burleson’s 19th annual Santa’s Breakfast is from  7–10:30 a.m. Saturday, at the Burleson Recreation Center, 550 N.W. Summercrest Blvd.

This event is geared toward children from birth to 12 years old (children 2 and younger get in free).

Admission is $4 for children and $5 for adults if you buy the tickets in advance at the recreation center. On the day of the event, Santa’s Breakfast tickets are $5 for children and $7 for adults. 

After you fill up on pancakes and sausage at the BRiCk, head over to Christmas at the Library from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Participants will enjoy creating ornaments, decorating cookies, door prizes, refreshments and more.

The city’s annual tree lighting and fireworks is also on Saturday. 

The Burleson Rotary Club’s Parade of Lights will start at Kerr Middle School at 6 p.m. and will bring Santa Claus to his final stop at the corner of Johnson Avenue and Ellison Street. 

Dancers and singers will be on hand entertaining the parade crowd. Santa and his helpers will then have the honor of turning on the city Christmas tree lights. The fireworks show will follow and is choreographed to holiday music. The show is a 10-15 minute low-aerial fireworks display at the corner of Johnson Avenue and Ellison Street.

Join the Senior Activity Center for their Christmas Craft Fair from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 8 where you can find one-of-a-kind handmade items.

The Russell Farm Art Center will celebrate the season with Carols and Cocoa under the glow of the farm’s holiday lights from 6 -8 p.m. Dec. 14. 

Come back to Russell Farm the next day for Christmas on the Farm from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Festivities include pictures with a donkey wearing antlers, cowboy poetry, hay rides and more.



Godley’s Country Christmas Parade & Holiday Market is from 5-9:30 p.m. at Godley City Park.

Hosted by the Godley Holiday Committee, the parade will be followed by fun activities for children, food, visits with Santa and shopping with local vendors.

There will also be a Fortnite dance off, live music by Austin Upchurch and Doug Rose, Toys for Tots, Angel Tree, bounce house, hot cocoa, letters to Santa and hay rides.



If you’d like to be the person who turns on the lights on Grandview’s Christmas tree, there is a contest for that.

All you need to do is design a poster advertising the parade and turn it into Grandview Elementary School by Monday.

For poster requirements, visit the Greater Grandview Chamber of Commerce on Facebook. The contest is open to children, although no age is listed.

Grandview’s Christmas parade begins at 6 p.m. Dec. 8, followed by the Christmas tree lighting and live music at Firefly Stage.



The Joshua Fire Department is hosting Pancakes with Santa from 8-11 a.m. Saturday at 770 N. Main St. Bring your cameras for photos and let your children tell Santa what they wish to receive for Christmas.  

The department is also teaming up with Toys for Tots to encourage residents to donate new and unwrapped toys from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday until Dec. 13. 



This year’s Keene Christmas Light Parade is at 6:30 p.m. Sunday.

For the first time in the parade’s 23-year history, the parade will have a new route, starting at Old Betsy Road and Fourth Street and proceeding north on Old Betsy Road to Magnolia. Floats will enter the Leiske-Pultar Gymnasium parking lot for the fireworks show. 

Parade staging is at Pinnacle Bank for vehicles and Chisholm Trail Academy for animals. Both are at the corner of Old Betsy Road and Fourth Street. Staging is not at the Leiske-Pultar Gymnasium parking lot as it was in previous years.

Members of the Keene Business Development Corp. board are grand marshals, and longtime realtor John Read is the parade marshal.

Read is a longtime resident of Keene who was professor of music at Southwestern Adventist University before starting a real estate career. 

Anything with wheels or feet, adorned with Christmas lights and is consistent with the theme, “The Reason We Celebrate This Season,” is welcome to participate and needs only show up at the starting time.

Parade entry fee is two packages of dog food — preferably Purina — to be donated to the Keene Animal Shelter. The dog food should be turned in at the registration tent.

A fireworks show will immediately follow the parade, and will be presented west of the Duck Pond at Callicott Student Park. The best place to view the fireworks is from the Leiske-Pultar parking lot or the embankment along Old Betsy Road between Magnolia and Campus Drive.

Parade entrants who want to be judged and be eligible for prizes should be at the bank parking lot and CTA grounds by 5 p.m.  Judging begins at 5:15 p.m.

First place prizes will be awarded in the following categories:

• Best lighted vehicle.

• Best lighted float.

• Best animal entry.

• Best business entry.

• Best children’s entry.

• Best Pathfinder Club.

• Best Adventurer Club.

• Best antique entry.

• Most unique entry.

One entry will be awarded Best Overall and well receive a trophy.

In the event of cancellation for inclement weather, the parade will be 6:30 p.m. Dec. 9.

For parade entry information, call the Keene chamber office at 817-556-2995.


Rio Vista

The fourth annual Christmas Tree Lighting and Cookies with Santa is from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Rio Vista Civic Center.

The event is sponsored by Rio Vista Police Department and Rio Vista City Hall. Donations provided by Boney’s Joe, Subway, Dollar General and local residents.

A special mailbox for letters to the North Pole is at Rio Vista City Hall, 201 Texas 174, for all to drop a letter to Santa before Dec. 18.

Be sure to include a name and full address because Santa and his elves will need to know where to send the return letter to.

Local events planned across Johnson County

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