HANCOCK COUNTY – Hancock County transforms into a winter wonderland this December, with festivals and activities for all ages.

Here’s a guide at what to do this Christmas season in our communities. Events are free, unless otherwise noted:

Dec. 1

 Santa will help light the tree in McCordsville Dec. 1 in an event that includes free cookies, balloon twisting, face painting and musical performances of local students. Submitted photo

Christmas Tree Lighting in McCordsville, 6-8 p.m. Dec. 1 at town hall, 62880 W. 800N. McCordsville. Event includes Santa Claus and the Grinch lighting the town’s Christmas tree, performances by the McCordsville Elementary School Choir and Mt. Vernon Middle School Holiday Band; free cookies, balloon twisting, face painting, ornament craft kits and more.

Dec. 2

Breakfast with Santa, 8-10:30 a.m. Dec. 2, Mt. Vernon High School cafeteria (door seven), 8112 N. 200 W., Fortville. Event includes breakfast, crafts, a Santa visit, live music and a free book giveaway to each child. Canned goods are accepted for a local food drive. Tickets are $10 per adult, children 8 and under are free; proceeds benefit Shop with a Public Servant. Learn more at mvoptimist.com.

Jingle John of Silly Safaris returns to local libraries this December. The event featuring “North Pole animals” has been a tradition of local families for years.

Holly Jolly Holiday Party, 9-11 a.m. Dec. 2, Fortville Community Center, 400 W. Church St., Fortville. Free event hosted by the Vernon Township Public Library and Fortville Parks Department will feature games, crafts, Santa and a live reindeer.

GCHS Holiday Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 2, Greenfield-Central High School, 830 N. Broadway St., Greenfield. Annual event is a fundraiser for the school’s FCCLA program and includes local vendors and visits with Santa.

Family art program “Ugly Sweater Decorating,” 9 a.m. to noon Dec. 2, Greenfield Parks and Recreation Art Studio, 280 N. Apple St., Greenfield. Visit facebook.com/greenfieldparksart for details or register at parks.greenfieldin.org.

Breakfast with Santa, 10 a.m. to noon Dec. 2, Greenfield Elks, 820 S. State St., Greenfield. Free event includes food, games and prizes with Santa arriving on a fire truck.

Weihnachtsmarket in Cumberland, noon to 7 p.m. Dec. 2 in historic Cumberland. Festival pays homage to the town’s early German settlers with artisan vendors, live entertainment, traditional food and beer, kids activities, visits with Santa, carriage rides and more. Learn more at town.cumberland.in.us.

Greenfield Fire Territory Holiday Open House, 3-5:30 p.m., 17 W. South St., Greenfield. Meet Santa, decorate cookies, drink hot chocolate and learn fire prevention tips for the holidays. A donation box for Toys for Tots will be on site.

 The lighted piano of longtime resident Joan Cupp is one of many holiday displays in to see in Shirley: the community’s Christmas walk is Dec. 2, while the 24th Annual Christmas Tree Walk at the Octagon House runs Dec. 1-2 and Dec. 8-9. Submitted photo

Shirley Christmas Walk, 5-8 p.m., downtown Shirley. Event features vendors, a chili supper, carriage rides, tree lighting, door prizes, a children’s gift wrapping contest and visits with Santa.

Christmas Parade of Lights, 6 p.m. Dec. 2, downtown Greenfield. The parade route will be from the courthouse annex parking lot, up American Legion Place to Main Street, to Pennsylvania Street, to South Street. The parade will disband at South Street and Riley Avenue; a tree lighting ceremony will be at Depot Street Park, along with visits with Santa.

Fortville Winterfest, noon to 7 p.m. Dec. 2 along Main Street in downtown Fortville. Festival features live music, carolers, a parade, tree lighting, ice skating, crafts, vendors, kids zone and visits with Santa.

Dec. 9

“The Song of Christmas” concert by the Hancock County Children’s Choir, 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 9 at Mt. Vernon High School, 1776 W. Ind. 234, Fortville. Tickets are at hancockcountychildrenschoir.thundertix.com.

Winter Fest “Home for the Holidays” 3-7 p.m. Dec. 9, downtown New Palestine. Event features craft vendors, food trucks, a gingerbread house display, a parade of lights and a visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Dec. 10

Rotary’s Got Talent, 4 p.m. Dec. 10 at the H.J. Ricks Centre for the Arts, 122 W. Main St., Greenfield. Benefit show will raise money for the Rotary Club of Greenfield’s new Peace Park.

“The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” concert by the Greenfield Community Choir, 4 p.m. Dec. 10, Bradley United Methodist Church, 210 W. Main St., Greenfield. Donations will be accepted; cookies and punch served following the concert.

Christmas at the Riley Home Open House, 5-7 p.m. Dec. 10, 250 W. Main St., Greenfield. The home will be open for tours and refreshments will be served in Lizabuth Ann’s Kitchen.

Dec. 13

Free Christmas movie night, sponsored by the Hancock County Extension Homemakers. “Home Alone 2” begins at 6 p.m. Dec. 13, followed by “White Christmas.” Both movies will be at the H.J. Ricks Centre for the Arts, 122 W. Main St., Greenfield.

Dec. 15

Pennsy Trail of Lights Wagon Rides, hosted by Greenfield Parks and Recreation, 6-8 p.m. Dec. 15, Depot Street Park; reserve a spot at parks.greenfieldin.org.

Dec. 16

Reindeer on Main, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 16 in the alley next to Griggsby Station in downtown Greenfield. Free event hosted by Greenfield Main Street coincides with the BOHO Holiday Artisan Market at Bradley Hall Events building lobby.

Ho Ho Ho Holiday Breakfast, 8 a.m. to noon Dec. 2 at Bradley Hall Events, 2 W. Main St., Greenfield. Seating is limited, visit facebook.com/GreenfieldMainStreet for more information and ticket details.

Christmas at the Movies, featuring all Greenfield-Central High School choir, orchestra and band ensembles, 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., tickets $6 for adults in advance or at the door, students are free; gcmusic.ludus.com.

Christmas at the Ricks, annual fundraiser talent show hosted by the Friends of the Theater, 7 p.m. Dec. 16 at the H.J. Ricks Centre for the Arts, 122 W. Main St., Greenfield. Featured artist is violinist Cathy Morris; several other local performing artists will also be on stage. Visit hctheaterfriends.org for details and ticket information.

Dec. 18

Holiday Time in the City, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 18 at the Hancock County Public Library, 900 W. McKenzie Road, Greenfield. Performance by Dorian “Hurricane” Phelps, an Indianapolis jazz drummer. Register at hcplibrary.org.