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Carolina Inn kicks off its 10th annual Holiday Celebration

Posted December 1, 2007
Updated November 18, 2008

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— A 10-ton sand sculpture depicting the final verse of “The Twelve Days of Christmas” carol, Breakfast with Santa, Teddy Bear Tea Parties and three community fund-raisers are among the highlights of The Carolina Inn’s 10th annual celebration of the holidays.

The five-week schedule features more than two dozen special events and begins Sunday, Dec. 2 with a free open house from Noon to 5 p.m. There will be refreshments, live bell ringers and self-guided tours of the Inn’s Twelve Days of Christmas decorative vignettes.

The decorations will be on display through Jan. 6 with daily viewings from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Also on display throughout the holidays are dolls and toys from every decade of the 20th century and even some from the 19th century, plus all of the entries in this year’s Gingerbread House contest from Dec. 15 to 21.

Sand Sculpture

World-renowned sand sculptors Damian Hoffman, Ed Moore and Alan Mutsumoto will create a unique tribute to the final verse of “The 12 Days of Christmas.”

Breakfast with Santa

Children 12 and under, along with their parents, are invited to enjoy a hearty Carolina Inn buffet breakfast with Santa on Dec. 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23. $20 for adults, $15 for children 3 to 12 and free for children under 3. Reservations are required.

Teddy Bear Tea Party

Children of ages 8-12 are invited to bring their favorite bear toys to the second annual Teddy Bear Tea Party on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 9, 23 and 30. Every child will receive a 2007 edition Beanie Baby Holiday Teddy Bear to take home. $20 per child and reservations are required.

Three Community Fund-raisers

During the season for giving, The Carolina Inn joins the spirit with three unique events. On Dec. 4, the Small Miracles, Big Laughs first-time event features a night of comedy by DSI Comedy Theater and a silent auction to benefit nine local non-profit organizations, plus a sampling of the Inn’s fine food and wines. $30 in advance or $35 at the door, and reservations are required.

On Dec. 16, all proceeds from the Family Teddy Bear Tea Parties will benefit the North Carolina Children’s Hospital’s Newborn Critical Care Center. $20 per person and reservations are required.

On Jan. 5, 25 percent of the gross receipts of the New Orleans Style Twelfth Night Banquet will be donated to the American Red Cross Katrina Relief Fund. $75 per person and reservations are required.

Concerts, Dances, Lectures, Luncheons and Dinners

Other special events on the Twelve Days of Christmas celebration schedule include:

  • Afternoon Tea, Dec. 2 to Jan. 6 except Sundays, Mondays and Christmas Day.
  • Tea Tasting 101, Dec. 6. Learn about the customs and traditions of tea and its origins and varieties.
  • Swing dance lessons, Dec. 11.
  • Real Men Wear Kilts - Scottish Highland Dinner, Dec. 12.
  • Soup to Nuts Etiquette Luncheon, Dec. 14. Etiquette professional Cecilia Budd Grimes returns to the Inn to teach the fine points of fine dining during a five-course lunch.
  • A free violin concert by students of the Suzuki Academy of North Carolina, Dec. 16. The students, ages 5-10, will perform holiday classics.
  • Lords A’Leaping Luncheon, a perennial favorite, Dec. 18. Woody Durham, the voice of the Tar Heels, will preview the college basketball season.
  • Three Wise Men and a Surprising Gift, Dec. 18. Storyteller and poet Mike Troy tells of three UNC alumni who were instrumental in founding Duke University.
  • Nine Ladies Tapping, Dec. 19. A performance for children and adults by Footnotes Tap Ensemble.
  • A History of Costume Jewelry, Dec. 20. A slide presentation, discussion and lunch.
  • Holiday cookie decorating for children, Dec. 21 and 26.
  • History of The Carolina Inn lecture and tour, Dec. 21 and 27.
  • Children’s Etiquette Luncheon, Dec. 27. Protocol professional Cecilia Budd Grimes will walk kids through the do’s and don’ts of table etiquette as they eat their way through a five-course lunch.
  • New Year’s Champagne 101, Dec. 28. Discussion and sampling of fine sparkling wines and the food that goes with them.
  • Fete de Trois Rois: A New Orleans-style Twelfth Night Banquet, Jan. 5. The Inn’s celebration of the holidays concludes with a Twelfth Night dinner that pays tribute to the spirit of New Orleans with an authentic King Cake from Victoria’s Sweets and entertainment provided by Mel Melton & The Wicked Mojos. One-quarter of the gross receipts will be donated to the American Red Cross Katrina Relief Fund.