Our 17th Annual Illumination Ceremony & Christmas In The Country Festival

25 Oct, 2011

On Sunday, November 20, 2011, the Grand Geneva Resort & Spa invites guests near and far to celebrate the magic of the holiday season at their annual Illumination Ceremony, when more than one million lights will brighten the resort’s 1,300-acre campus. Now in its 17th year, the ceremony marks the official beginning of the resort’s six week-long “Christmas in the Country” celebration, featuring a variety of festive events including a musical revue, a dazzling display of home-made gingerbread houses, and appearances from Santa himself.

This year the Illumination Ceremony festivities begin in a new venue, the resort’s expansive Grand Forum Theatre, where guests can take in some of “Christmas in the Country’s” lavish holiday displays. Guests can marvel at the hand-crafted, intricate designs of the resort’s newest holiday exhibit, Quilts of Christmas, featuring the work of local quilters.  The Forum will also serve as the home for the popular Festival of Trees display, comprised of trees decorated by area residents and businesses. Guests will also be treated to live performances by the Badger High School Bach Group and the cast of the Grand Geneva’s annual “Hooray for Holidays!” musical revue, while enjoying complimentary hot cider and holiday cookies.  As dusk settles on the resort, attendees should be on the lookout for special guests Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus, who will be making their first appearances of the season to light the campus’ million-plus lights. The evening concludes with a fireworks grand finale over the night’s sky.

To commemorate the charitable spirit of the holidays, the Grand Geneva will host a special auction at the end of the season, during which, entries to the Festival of Trees and Quilts for Christmas will be auctioned off to benefit the Walworth County Alliance for Children. This year, the resort is once again partnering with the Walworth County Deputy Sheriff’s Department to support the Toys for Kids organization. Illumination Ceremony attendees are encouraged to bring one new, unwrapped toy or article of clothing as a donation. Guests will also have a chance to enter a special charity raffle to benefit Toys for Kids, with a live drawing during the Illumination Ceremony presentation in the Forum Theatre.

In celebration of this special event, the Grand Geneva is offering a special overnight rate of $59, exclusive of tax and resort fees, on the night of November 20. As an added bonus, upon check-in, guests staying overnight with children will be entered into a special drawing to be named “Santa’s Helper” for the evening.  One lucky child guest will be chosen from a drawing during the Illumination Ceremony to help Santa press the button to light the resort’s decorations and officially signal the beginning of “Christmas in the Country”.

Admittance to the Illumination Ceremony is complimentary and open to the general public. From Monday, November 21, through Thursday, December 29, guests are invited to enjoy the Grand Geneva’s “Christmas in the Country” festivities, which will include a plethora of musical and theatrical performances, special dining opportunities, afternoon holiday teas, festive snow sculpture displays, trolley tours of the lights, and more.

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