Sertoma of Minot brings holiday cheer to Oak Park
Looking to get into the holiday spirit and enjoy the lights? Head to Oak Park this evening as the Sertoma Club celebrates the opening of their annual Christmas in the Park from 6-10 p.m.
“I think we’ve been doing it almost 20 years now,” explained Sue Stewart, secretary of the Sertoma Club of Minot. “When we first started, it was a dollar per car to go through the park. Now it’s $5, so we haven’t changed the price of it in about eight or nine years.”
The long-standing tradition brings businesses and organizations together to sponsor spots for the Sertoma club to decorate at Oak Park with displays that can be enjoyed by the whole family. Currently, the club has around 65 sponsors for the colorful wonderland.
“It’s all decorated by volunteers, all Sertoma members, and their families and some coworkers that pitch in,” Stewart explained. “We have scheduled work nights and work days on Saturdays but we really hit it hard about the beginning of October.”
Adding new displays each year, Stewart commented that the Christmas in the Park is a continued “work in progress” but it is fun to see the volunteers that help, appreciate the outcome and welcome the community through the park every year.
“The day after Thanksgiving is when we open,” Stewart said. “On the 29th at 5:45 p.m., the lights will be on and people can start coming in and driving through the park. It tends to be a tradition in a lot of families.”
There’s a special display this year dedicated to the Sertoma Club’s “snowbirds.”
“We have members that go to Arizona and Florida or wherever else in the winter,” Stewart explained. “We put up a special display this year and it’s of a heart that says ‘Love Sertoma Snowbirds,’ and then there’s a little camper and two cacti. So that’s a new one.”
They also have a number of “crazy trees” throughout the park to keep an eye out for, as well as some elves peaking around the trees.
“We’ve got a few new displays but it’s always fun to see because we started putting LED lights on the displays about three years ago and they just pop now, especially if it’s a dark night,” Stewart explained.
Tickets can be pre-purchased at all four Marketplace locations in Minot. Five tickets can be pre-purchased for $20.
Buses and limousines are also welcomed through the park at $20 per load.
The festive, drive-thru experience is open now through Dec. 31. The Sertoma Club is typically able to raise $35,000-40,000 per year. These funds go back into the community through different projects, scholarships and donations. Some of the Sertoma supported projects include: STEAM T-ball League, Minot Youth Baseball Complex, ND Center for Persons with Disabilities, Dreamcatchers Baseball group and more.
Minot Sertoma, which is short for “service to mankind,” has served the Minot community for 60 years. Membership consists of more than 60 area business men and women who are committed to giving back to their community.
To learn more about Minot Sertoma, visit them on Facebook, @MinotSertomaClub. To learn more about the Christmas in the Park, visit their event page on Facebook.