We have so many fun and festive events this weekend! Check them out and get out there and enjoy our community during the holidays! 

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Christmas Tree Lighting

5:15 Thursday at the Civic Center

The annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony is the city's way to welcome the beginning of the holiday season.

Norway spruce approximately 30-feet tall. Over 50 singers with the Reitz High School Choir will perform and Mayor Lloyd Winnecke will start the countdown to turn on the tree lights. The Christmas tree will remain on display until after Jan. 1, 2018.

Madrigal Feaste

7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 12:30 p.m. for the Sunday matinee, carter Hall University Center West on USI's campus, Tickets are $28 for USI students and seniors (60+) and $34 for adults. Doors open at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 12:30 p.m. for the Sunday matinee. To purchase tickets visit USI.edu/madrigals or call at 812-461-5237.

The University of Southern Indiana Chamber Choir will present the 48th annual Madrigal Feaste, first performed in 1969. A festive dinner and concert set in Renaissance Ireland. Witness the reenactment of a royal feast, with processionals and holiday music accompanying each item on the menu as performers and guests welcome the holiday season.

The Laramie Project

The Unitarian Universalist Church is hosting "The Laramie Project" Friday., 7:30 p.m. at the church,  2910 E Morgan Ave. Advance tickets can be purchased uuevansville.org.

The play based on the life of gay student Matthew Shepard who was brutally attacked, tied to a fence and left to die in 1998, in Laramie, Wyoming.

After the murder, members of the Tectonic Theater Project in New York City traveled to Laramie, Wyoming, to interview residents about how the attack had affected the town. These transcripts were transformed into "The Laramie Project."

Les Patineurs by Ballet Indiana 

Nonprofit Ballet Indiana is presenting Les Patineurs at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at AIS Diamond Campus. All tickets are $8 and available at the door.

Rather than a story, the ballet provokes the playful environment of an ice skating party in the crisp winter air. There is a speed skating race, a skating lesson and a snowball fight. Before the ballet, intermediate and advanced dancers of Ballet Indiana will entertain with excerpts from classical and romantic ballets, as well as contemporary solos.

Christmas concerts

The K-LOVE Christmas Tour 2017 is 7 p.m. Friday at Aiken Theatre. Tour tickets range from $23-$53 with VIP packages ranging from $153 to $183. Purchase at any Ticketmaster outlet or at the Old National Events Plaza box office.

The concert features Steven Curtis Chapman, Plumb and We Are Messengers and will be a night of Christmas favorites and top hits.

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Hoosier favorites Straight No Chaser are back at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Aiken Theatre.

Tickets range from $40-$60 and are available at Ticketmaster outlets or the Old National Events Plaza box office.

The Evansville Philharmonic is bringing their annual holiday performances the Peppermint Pops and Candy Cane Express Saturday and Sunday.

There are two performances of the Peppermint Pops -- 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday -- at the Victory. Candy Cane Express is 2 p.m. Saturday. Attendees to pops encouraged to bring food item to donate to food bank and Candy Cane new or gently used kids coats.

For tickets, call 812-425.5050 or order online at evansvillephilharmonic.org. Tickets can also be purchased at the Victory Theatre box office two hours prior to each concert.

Pops will feature guest vocalist Tim King joining the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus to perform favorite holiday selections, such as “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” “Ave Maria” and more. Also featured is the Evansville Children’s Choir singing “God Bless Us Everyone” from "A Christmas Carol,” the Evansville Ballet performing “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” and “March of the Toys” by Legacy Dance Company from "The Nutcracker."

The Candy Cane Express is abbreviated version of the Pops performance geared toward families. North Junior High eighth-grader LillyBea Ireland will host the show this year. She's a member of the National Touring Company for Annie The Musical.

Stacey Godbold

Karibu Kenya

The Karibu Kenya fundraising dinner is 5:30-7:30 p.m. Saturday at Aldersgate United Methodist Church, 5130 Lincoln Ave. Tickets are $25 per person, $15 for college students and $10 for children 12 and over. Children under 12 are free. Reserve tickets online at aldersgateum.org. Click "give" and donate securely as a guest.

All proceeds from the event -- which features a traditional Kenyan dinner made by Kenyans living in Evansville, a sale of African crafts, silent auction items, entertainment and a special art sale by students at Fairlawn Elementary.

All proceeds go to send children to school in the Dago village of Kenya. The program provides scholarships that include school fees, uniforms, shoes, two hot meals a day and salaries for teachers.

The art from the Fairlawn students was done in African style and is being auctioned off at ebay.com/sch/kendar36/m.html. It will also be on display at the event. The students are performing during the event and hope to raise at least $300.

Provided by Courier and Press

Christmas in New Harmony

The Saturday and Sunday event in downtown New Harmony 9 a.m. to  5 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

includes a craft and artisan sale, holiday open house at local merchants, musical performances, festival food and drinks and the Christmas in Appalachia concert Saturday night. During the day Saturday is the Main Street Parade (10:30 a.m.), breakfast (8-10 a.m.) and photos with Santa (11 a.m. to 1 p.m.) and a number of activities for children. The event is 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. For more information visit visitnewharmony.com.

Newburgh Celebrates Christmas

Newburgh Celebrates Christmas is Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday

and will celebrate the holiday in a Victorian style including characters and musicians strolling the downtown Newburgh streets in Charles Dickens costumes, chestnuts will be roasting on an open fire and many other activities.

There will be a live nativity, giant snow glob bounce house, find the elf and find the candy cane contest, Holiday Home Tour, Festival of Trees and more. Visit historicnewburgh.org for more information.