Summit County celebrates the start of the holidays | SummitDaily.com

Summit County celebrates the start of the holidays

The holiday season is here in Summit County, as towns celebrate Yuletide joy with festive events.

Towns throughout Summit hosted tree lightings during the first week of December. Dillon turned on the lights promptly at the start of the month on Dec. 1. Frisco followed suit the next day, with a tree lighting to start off the annual Wassail Days celebration. As part of the event, through Dec. 11 people are welcome to try 12 different varieties of wassail, a type of spiced cider, scattered throughout the town. Bring a completed "12 Sips of Wassail Card" to the Frisco Information Center to exchange it for a commemorative mug. Visit townoffrisco.com for a full schedule of Wassail Days events.

Silverthorne kicked off the season with a Holiday Bazaar held in the Pavilion on Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Shoppers could spend the day finding the perfect homemade gift from 34 different Colorado-based vendors.

"It's so fun to see what people make," said Jaci Ohayon, a local author in Silverthorne.

Ohayon had a table selling her book "Food Dancer," along with Karin Mitchell, another local author.

It was the first time that Carin Faust, the events and leisure coordinator for Silverthorne, helped to organize the event. She added that planning events like this is her passion.

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"(Bazaars) are a good event to get everybody into the holidays," she said.

Santa made the rounds through Summit on Dec. 2, making pit stops in Silverthorne for the Bazaar, Frisco for Wassail Days and finally Breck for the town's tree lighting in the evening. Saint Nick will return to Frisco on Dec. 10 at the Frisco Historic Park and Museum.

Breck filled the day Saturday with several events, starting with the second annual Fat Bike Open, which started on Main Street at 2:30 p.m. While waiting for one the of the day's most popular events, the Bernese Mountain Dog Parade, holiday enthusiasts were welcome to go to Handmade Holiday, a winter open house, in the Breckenridge Arts District.

Steamy cups filled with cocoa brought relief from the cold at Main Street Station as more than 50 of man's best friend filled the plaza for the Berner Parade.

Thomas Carlin brought his 3-month-old Bernese puppy, Addie. He and several friends came from the Front Range to see the Breck tree lighting for the first time. Addie bore the "cone of shame," but was ready for the parade.

"She got bit by another dog and had to get stitches, so she's recovering from that," Carlin said. "But she's feeling good."

The dogs strutted their stuff down Main, with a few extra breeds crashing the party. Their wagging tails led the way to the Race of the Santas starting line, where more than 400 Santas waited to run.

Before the official start, racers held a "moment of cheer" for last year's winner: Lauren Hoover. Hoover was killed in a car crash earlier this year.

Shortly after, hundreds of Santas, elves, Grinches and even a mini fire-breathing dragon crashed over the starting line for one of the final events in Breck's holiday opener.