Finding the Holiday Spirit on the Outer Banks

Illuminating the night and creating holiday spirit at the Elizabethan Gardens Grand Illumination.
Illuminating the night and creating holiday spirit at the Elizabethan Gardens Grand Illumination.

Thanksgiving is almost here and that, of course means the Holiday Season is just around the corner.

Sometimes it takes just a bit of effort to get into that Christmas spirit, so in the interests of promoting goodwill and cheer among all our visitors to the Outer Banks and local residents, here are two Thanksgiving weekend events that we think will get just about anyone into the spirit of the season

Grand Illumination-Winter Lights

Elizabethan Gardens on Roanoke Island is a magical place at any time, but as the days get shorter and the nights darker, strolling the paths of the Gardens, illuminated by thousands and thousands of lights in the trees, plants and everywhere is amazing. There are also some wonderful special decorations that seem to create a wonderland.

This is a not to be missed Outer Banks tradition.

The Grand Illumination is always the Saturday after Thanksgiving and it s a wonderful celebration of the Outer Banks community. High school choirs perform, there are cookies and cider—and best of all, maybe, the fire pit in the middle of the Garden seems to have an endless supply of marshmallows for roasting.

It’s hard to imagine a better way to find the holiday spirit.

Handel’s Messiah at All Saints Catholic Church

Located in Kitty Hawk, All Saints Catholic Church is as close to a perfect setting to perform Handel’s classic holiday opus as there could be. Spacious with amply seating, with it’s high ceiling and hard walls, sound reverberates. Perfect for the Messiah.

John Buford, who is conducting, is the First Flight High School music director, but that is just one small part of what he does. A remarkably talented musician, he is classically trained and has a real knack for bringing out the best in his choirs.

The performance begins at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.