LAKEWOOD RANCH -- While the temperatures may still be in the upper-70s, Lakewood Ranch's Main Street will be transformed into a snowy holiday scene on Friday night.
The Christmas tree is lit, Santa will be strolling Main Street and carolers will be singing as part of the monthly Music on Main event. Music on Main, which runs from 6- 9 p.m. the first Friday of the month, is a free concert. This Friday, The Distractions will play "up-tempo contemporary music" and proceeds from the event will benefit the Food Bank of Manatee.
"I think December brings out the best in people," said Amanda Vercheski, Main Street property manager. "We are just really excited about this one. There is so much going on and a lot of participation."
In addition to the normal Music on Main activities, Grace Community Church in Lakewood Ranch purchased a snow machine so there will be flurries along the street from 6-8 p.m.
"It is December in Florida and it is exciting," said Jennifer Obenauer, the church's
administrator. "These kids don't get to see snow. ... It is going to be a little winter wonderland. We are trying to bring winter to Florida for the night."
Serendipity Boutique will host its first trunk show on Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., but it will also have a tent up at Music on Main. Sarasota resident Lynn Zachos, who works out of New York, will travel to Lakewood Ranch to feature her design line called Ava Gray.
"It is exciting for me to be able to come back and see friends and families," Zachos said. "I love the area. It's a good feeling to go back and see everybody and see how Sarasota has grown as well."
Wendy McCann, the boutique's manager, said she has known Zachos since she first started designing and suggested doing the trunk show featuring Zachos.
"We are really, really excited about bringing her in and having her be a part of the very first trunk show that we will have at the store," McCann said.
Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance and Grow Financial Federal Credit Union also will have booths set up during Music on Main including a cash-grab machine where a person enters the machine and tries to catch money flying through in the air.
The holiday cheer along Main Street began Thursday evening with carriage rides, carolers and an appearance from Santa and the free holiday events will continue until Dec. 21.
For more information about the events, visit lakewoodranch.com.
Claire Aronson, University Parkway/Sarasota reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7024 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @Claire_Aronson.