Church services, serene holiday activities around Breckenridge | SummitDaily.com

Church services, serene holiday activities around Breckenridge

Christina Holbrook
Special to the Weekender

The days and weeks leading up to the holidays can often be a whirlwind of activity. There may be plans to coordinate with friends and relatives, and work projects to finish up. If we are traveling, there are hotel reservations to organize, flights to confirm, bad weather to dodge.

This year, the winter solstice, Christmas, and the beginning of Hanukkah all arrive within a few days of each other. It may be that there is some ancient impulse in all of us humans to pause and reflect during this time of the year — the months have been moving us towards darkness, and now, slowly, we begin to move towards longer days, towards the light.

For those of us fortunate enough to find ourselves in the mountains this holiday weekend, here are some suggestions for ways to relax and recharge, to spend time with loved ones, and to connect with the spirit of peace that we long for during this season.

CELEBRATE YOUR FAITH

“For many of us who live in the mountains, peace and a sense of spirituality are found in time spent in the outdoors.”

Recommended Stories For You

Religious services are, for many, an important part of the holiday season. Summit County is home to many faiths, and a wide range of religious services is celebrated throughout the community — from church services featuring favorite Christmas carols, to more traditional mass. Services celebrating Hanukkah are also available. For a complete listing of religious services, go to our Explore Summit calendar on page 9. Here are a few highlights:

Catholic Mass, celebrated in many languages. St. Mary's and Our Lady of Peace Catholic Churches will hold mass in several locations throughout Summit County Dec. 24-25. On Saturday, Dec. 24, Riverwalk in Breckenridge will host two large celebrations on Christmas Eve, and additional services will be held at St. Mary's in Breckenridge, the Keystone Conference Center, and at our Lady of Peace in Silverthorne. On Christmas Day, Dec. 25, mass will be celebrated in Silverthorne, Breckenridge and also at the Chapel at Copper Mountain. Services in Spanish and in Polish will be held at Our Lady of Peace in Silverthorne. For a complete schedule, go to: http://www.summitcatholic.org/christmas-schedule-2016

Services for families and kids. Children are welcome at all religious services, but some houses of worship are offering a special time slot geared for families with young children. Father Dyer Methodist Church in Breckenridge will host a Family Christmas Service at 3 p.m. on Christmas Eve. http://www.fatherdyer.com/coming-up. St. John's Episcopal Church in Breckenridge also presents a Christmas Pageant, Children's Homily & Holy Communion on the 24th at 3 p.m. in Breckenridge. http://www.stjohnsbreck.org/worship-services

Celebrating Hanukkah. Synagogue of the Summit will hold a Hanukkah celebration on Wednesday, Dec. 28 at 6 p.m. For more information email: synagogueofthesummit@gmail.com

GIVE VOICE TO THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS

Caroling is a joyful way to ring in the holiday season. Here are some opportunities to sing out, and maybe even bump into Santa.

Singing with Santa. The popular Summit Choral Society can be heard caroling on Friday, Dec. 23 at 7 p.m. at Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church in Silverthorne. On Saturday morning, Dec. 24, the choir will be spreading cheer (and accompanying Santa) at Arapahoe Basin, from 10 a.m. until noon.

Traditional carols and candlelight services. St. John's Episcopal Church in Breckenridge will offer services with traditional carols at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Christmas Eve. At the 10:30 p.m. service, the Reverend Charlie Brumbaugh will accompany carolers on guitar. Evening services will be lit by candlelight. Father Dyer Methodist Church also offers Favorite Carols and Candlelight on Christmas Eve, at 4:30 p.m., 6 p.m., 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.

All churches will be offering Sunday Morning Christmas Day services.

FIND SERENITY ON THE YOGA MAT

A gentle, restorative yoga class may be just what is needed during this hectic season. For the yogi or yogini visiting Summit County this weekend, here are some options you might want to consider:

Candlelight Yoga at Copper Mountain. Local Vinyasa and Kundalini instructor Melinda Krasowski is a well-known presence at the Frisco Senior Center where she teaches gentle yoga several times a week. On Saturday's, Krasowski also teaches a mellow candlelit class at the Chapel at Copper Mountain. On Saturday, Dec. 24, from 7–8:15 a.m., she'll be leading a gentle Vinyasa flow and a Meditation for Peace.

Meta for the Holidays. The popular Meta Yoga Studios in Breckenridge will have several offerings for the holiday weekend. Classes include Friday night, Dec. 23, a Warming Flow, from 5:30–6:30 p.m.; Heated Heart Opening on Saturday, Dec. 24 from 10:30–11:45 a.m.; Holiday Gentle Flow 12:15-1:15 p.m. on both Saturday, Dec. 24 and Sunday, Dec. 25.

Stretch and Restore. In Frisco, Summit Hot Yoga will offer a Friday Night Stretch and Restore, from 5:30–6:45 p.m.; on Saturday, a Vinyasa Flow from 12–1:15 p.m.

ESCAPE WITH A QUIET SKI OR SNOWSHOE

For many of us who live in the mountains, peace and a sense of spirituality are found in time spent in the outdoors. A quiet cross-country ski or snowshoe can be the ideal way to decompress during this busy season.

Breckenridge Nordic Center. Just a few minutes from downtown Breckenridge, the Breckenridge Nordic Center offers 1,400 acres of forests, open meadows, and soaring mountain views. The center is family friendly, and children and adults can rent skis and boots or snowshoes for $22. Open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday and Sunday.

Frisco Nordic Center. The Frisco Nordic Center is located on the Peninsula Recreation Area, close to Main Street. Slide on boots and skis ($20-$30) or a pair of snowshoes ($20) and explore this lovely terrain with views of Lake Dillon. Open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday.

ENJOY THE SIMPLE OF PLEASURE OF LIGHTS

Colorful holiday lights bring a sense of magic to our historic downtowns and our mountain resorts, and remind us that this is the season of light. A simple evening stroll to see the lights and decorations can be the perfect holiday activity to enjoy with children, friends or that special someone.

Downtown Breckenridge. Stroll along Main Street in Breckenridge, or take a quiet detour along the Blue River to see shops and Christmas trees brightly decorated. Walk up to French Street where twinkling lights enliven this charming neighborhood of Victorian homes.

Main Street Frisco. A dramatic display of moving lights welcomes you into downtown Frisco. The bright colors lend a festive air to shops and restaurants on a snowy evening.

Keystone Resort. At the Keystone Resort, stroll along pedestrian walkways decorated with Christmas lights, or visit The Chocolate Village, which is fun for kids and open to the public. Later, wander over to the ice rink for a classic holiday evening of skating under the stars.