Finally, it's time for those who cling to the past and fight the ever bigger and earlier tide of commercialism for Christmas to let loose and enjoy the holiday in all of its retail glory.

Halloween? Gone. Veterans Day? Gone. Thanksgiving? Gone.


Those blips on the way to Christmas hardly matter to some, especially many retailers, who act as if the Christmas shopping season begins the day after Labor Day. It doesn't.

For those of us who don't care to do anything Christmas-like until the day after Thanksgiving, the Christmas decorations and accompanying holiday songs come out of hibernation too early each year. And they come out much earlier with each passing year.

It's Christmas parade weekend in Harford

The annual Harford County Christmas Weekend begins Friday, Dec. 2, and continues through Sunday, Dec. 4, with parades in Havre de Grace, Aberdeen and Bel Air to usher in the holidays.

In spite of efforts to bury it, Halloween has grown into a commercial holiday second only to Christmas. Still, All Hallow's Eve in the face of the 'Tis the Season retail monster can't slow that Christmas Express. Who knows? Perhaps, the Fourth of July is the next holiday to fall in the face of the Christmas avalanche. There are, and have been for some time, a smattering of year-round Christmas shops, but those rare operations are different types of intrusions on our sensibilities. The Christmas season foisted upon us by big retailers since early September is a full frontal assault on the more traditional view of the holiday season.

Thankfully, for all of us, it's Christmastime and it's time to start accepting all things Christmas.

We are part of the many who love Christmas, but are very Scrooge-like until after Thanksgiving.

Maryland-Pennsylvania Christmas fair is Saturday, Sunday

The historic borough of Delta and neighboring Peach Bottom Township, along with the Maryland towns of Cardiff and Whiteford, welcome residents and visitors to a community-wide open house during the 38th annual Delta Christmas Fair this weekend.

We suggest, whether one is shaking off the Scrooge Blues, or is just happy that everyone has joined the Christmas party at the appropriate time, that before the madness of Black Friday vanishes, that everyone do what they can to support Small Business Saturday. That's a great time to become reacquainted with everything the downtown shopping areas in Aberdeen, Bel Air and Havre de Grace offer.

There are plenty of small businesses outside of those three downtown business districts that could also use our shopping support.

Then it's Cyber Monday. That's when online retailers do their best to pull shoppers and their money (or, at least their credit cards) away from traditional shopping centers for the allure of the cyber world and its infinite shopping opportunities.

That comes at the beginning of next week and is followed at the end of the week by Christmas parades in Havre de Grace, at 6 p.m. next Friday (Dec. 2), Aberdeen at 3 p.m. next Saturday (Dec. 3) and in Bel Air at 3 p.m. next Sunday (Dec. 4).

Christmas Weekend gives way to many other observances.

Ambulance Corps a Toys for Tots dropoff site

Havre de Grace Ambulance Corps is again a drop-off location for the 9th Annual Toys for Tots Campaign & Stuff the Ambulance Toy Drive.

This year, i

The lone non-Christmas holiday event worth noting between now and Dec. 25 is the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The following is the opening of the message President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered to Congress on Dec. 8, 1941: "Yesterday, Dec. 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan." Indeed, as President Roosevelt predicted, that date has held a special place in American life, but it seems less so with each passing year. But we digress.

Back to the joyous holiday season. The annual Candlelight Tour, of Havre de Grace is the weekend after Pearl Harbor Day.

Churches everywhere will have their celebrations – special services, nativity scenes, open houses, holiday drives to help the needy, and such – of the birth of Christ.

Thankfully, and finally, it's truly time to start observing that most wonderful time of the year.