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Williamsburg Library’s holiday celebration letter perfect

Alison McPherson-Styles of Florence and her children will spend Sunday picking out the family’s Christmas tree and doing a little holiday shopping. As they have for the past few years, they will end the day at Meekins Library in Williamsburg listening to a reading of some of the classic stories of the season.

“It has sort of become part of our holiday tradition,” McPherson-Styles said. She said she and her best friend have children who are the same age and they enjoy bringing them to Meekins for this event.

“The kids love it and it is a nice way to move into the season,” she said.

The library will hold its annual reading of holiday classics Sunday from 4 to 6 p.m. This is a popular family event that is attended by people of all ages.

This year’s reading will feature three stories: “The Spotted Pony,” by Eric A. Kimmel, which tells the story of Hanukkah and the healing power of one miraculous pony; William Locke’s 1910 “A Christmas Mystery,” a tale about how the discovery of a child changes the lives of “three wise men”; and “The Little Fir Tree,” a classic written in 1954 by Margaret Wise Brown about a special tree that brings joy to a young boy.

The event is free and all are welcome to come read or listen as they enjoy holiday treats and warm beverages. The library asks that people bring a donation for the Hilltown Survival Center or the Dakin Pioneer Valley Humane Society.

Carols and hayrides

On Saturday, the First Congregational Church of Williamsburg will sponsor a fun and festive holiday event for the whole family. From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. the public is invited to enjoy caroling in front of the town’s Grange Hall on Main Street. Horse-drawn hayrides will be offered throughout the event, providing leisurely tours around the town.

“We have done this for three or four years now and it is very well-attended,” said event organizer and Williamsburg Selectman Denise Banister. Hot chocolate and anassortment of cookies will be available.

“If people want to bring more cookies to share that would be wonderful too,” Banister said.

Hayrides will leave from the parking lot of the Anne T. Dunphy School, 1 Petticoat Hill Road. The event is free and open to the public.

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Winter parking ban

The Williamsburg Police Department is now enforcing a winter parking ban that went into effect on Dec. 1, and will continue through March 31. During this time, there will be no parking on any street in town between midnight and 6 a.m. Residents should note that the parking ban is in place even when there is no snow on the ground. Cars that are in violation of the ban will be ticketed and towed.

Residents are also asked to be mindful during snowstorms, keeping all streets clear of parked cars so that the Highway Department can properly clear the roadways. For questions on the parking ban, contact the Williamsburg Police Department at 268-7237.

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Valley Gives

Snow Farm, a center on Clary Road that provides instruction in a range of crafts and arts, will participate in Valley Gives, a 24-hour celebration on Dec. 12 that aims to benefit the area’s nonprofit institutions. Some 250 organizations are involved this year in the effort, which makes it possible for donors to contribute to their favorite nonprofit through the Valley Gives website, http://valleygives.razoo.com, between noon and 11:59 p.m. on Dec. 12. At the end of 24 hours, the top three nonprofits that have raised the most money and the top three nonprofits that have the most donors will be rewarded with special grants of $15,000, $10,000 and $5,000. IN a nod to the date — 12/12/12 — the nonprofit in 12th place in each category will receive $1,200. Participating nonprofits also will be eligible for special bonus gifts given between 11 a.m. and midnight to randomly selected winners. The Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts is hosting the event.

Supporters of Snow Farm can follow its progress on Dec. 12 by visiting its Facebook page or its Twitter account.

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