The Williamsburg Christmas Market, similar in style to traditional Christmas markets of Europe, will return to downtown Williamsburg for its fourth year.
Like last year, about 40 vendors, including several food vendors, will be set up along Court Street between the Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg and the city’s Bicentennial Park. The market will run for five weekends until Christmas.
Area nonprofit CultureFix organizes and operates the market, according to Steve Rose, CultureFix co-founder and market organizer. Williamsburg has contributed funds to operate the market and provides the location without charge for the event, he added.
Admission to the market is free.
The market will begin operations Nov. 24-26 and continue every weekend in December: Nov. 30-Dec. 3, Dec. 7-10, Dec. 14-17 and Dec. 21-23. The times have been altered slightly from last year and will be Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Fridays, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sundays 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“We’ve purchased additional chalets this year,” Rose said, “to accommodate food vendors and others.” The wooden chalets are capable of being secured for the evenings and “simply look better and more European than simply tents,” he added.
Vendors secure their spaces on a weekend basis. In total, there will be about 60 vendors during the market’s 18 days.
Last year’s event drew approximately 45,000 people. “When there are no admission tickets, it’s somewhat difficult to determine attendance,” Rose said. “But we carefully gauge visitors day by day and weekend by weekend. We’re hopeful that this year the market will gain slightly in the number of patrons.”
Rain will keep visitation down, he said, “but not the cold. We’ll have hot cider, hot chocolate and glühwein — warm spiced wine — available, and patrons seem to enjoy that and being out in the colder temperature.”
There will also be include holiday music, fire pits and photo opportunities throughout the market, including in the chalet where Santa Claus will be stationed.
Ice rink opens at Colonial Williamsburg
The Liberty Ice Pavilion on Duke of Gloucester Street at the edge of Merchants Square opened Nov. 17 and will remain through much of the winter until Feb. 27.
The approximate 50-by-70-foot rink is made of real ice. It’s the rink’s ninth year.
Adult daily rates to skate are $16, with youth (ages 3-12) $14. Skate rentals are $6. There’s also a season skate pass that’s $110 for adults and $95 for youth.
Discounts are available to Colonial Williamsburg employees and volunteers, CW pass members, military and William & Mary students. The discount is $3 off regular admissions on weekdays.
The posted rink schedule (subject to change) is Sunday through Thursday, noon to 8 p.m.; Friday, noon to 10 p.m.; and Saturday 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. There will be different operating hours for holidays, which can be found at www.colonialwilliamsburg.org/tickets/ice-skating.
Refreshments including hot cider, coffee and more are available for purchase adjacent to the rink.
The Whaling Company continues business
The Whaling Company restaurant at 494 McLaws Circle in James City County is continuing business for its 43rd year.
“I’ve had people calling me,” owner Steve York explained, “asking if we were still in business. They felt we were closing down.”
News that the property upon which the restaurant is located was sold apparently caused some confusion. “That had nothing to do with my restaurant,” York added.
“We’re are continuing to do business under the Whaling Company logo,” he said. “We’ve been in business since 1980 and love Williamsburg, love our longtime guests and love our employees.”
At least 20 of the current staff have been with York over the past decade.
There are still spots available for the restaurant’s reservation-only Thanksgiving Day dinner, featuring turkey with all the trimmings. The cost is $45 per person. Reservations can be made at 757-229-0275.
Colonial CPA Group will open new office
Colonial Real Estate Holdings LLC has purchased the 2,069-square-foot first floor office condominium at 5400 Discovery Park Blvd. in James City County from Leebcor Properties at Casey LLC for $480,000 as an investment.
Colonial CPA Group will open a new office at the location in New Town in early 2024, according to Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer real estate of Richmond.
Other businesses within the three-story 30,000 square foot building include Cornerstone…