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Lowcountry holiday traditions

Amidst times like these, it’s more important than ever to keep traditions alive. The pandemic has created a different way of going about everyday life, which has obviously led to events becoming virtual or altered in some way. Have no fear, though — a few of your favorite local events are still taking place, even if they do look a tiny bit different (like everything else in 2020). Take your family to The Manger Project and enjoy some quality time together, or participate in the Jingle Jingle 5K with your bubble of friends to burn off some of those holiday calories. Whatever your traditions are, these familiar events are sure to help bring more joy into this unusual holiday season.


See the lights

Winter Wonderland

Drive by the Island Rec Center from 4 to 7 p.m., Dec. 11-31 to soak in a magical holiday scene. On opening night, enjoy a treat at the festival’s drive-thru until the goodies run out. Hilton Head Fire & Rescue Station 3, next to First Presbyterian Church, also offers a great drive-thru experience. Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park also has a drive-thru display.


Catch a parade

Reverse Christmas Parade

The town of Bluffton will host its annual Christmas parade as a “reverse” parade this year as a way to keep the holiday tradition alive while incorporating health and safety precautions. The reverse parade will allow entrants to stay socially distant while being stationed on May River Road while spectators drive by. Check it out at 10 a.m. Dec. 5.


Make a manger

The Manger Project

Bring a hammer and your kids for this fun and interactive Christmas tradition at St. Luke’s Church on Hilton Head Island. The event will take place from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Dec. 5 under beautiful oak trees. You also can purchase a manger kit to make at home, “till morning is nigh.”


Go for a run

Jingle Jingle 5K

Burn off those extra holiday calories by signing up for the 28th annual Hilton Head Hospital Jingle Jingle 5K Run & Health Walk. The race is set for 8 a.m., Dec. 24 and loops around Main Street and the Hilton Head Hospital campus. Holiday prizes will be given to the top finishers in each category. Santa is scheduled to make an appearance at the after party.


Give back

Sandalwood Food Drive

The holiday spirit is all about giving. What better way to spread some cheer than by giving back through serving, giving, volunteering or donating to those in need? Custom Audio Video is hosting a food drive to support Sandalwood Food Pantry, Dec. 1-18. Find donation boxes outside the store in Bluffton. Other great ways to give back include the annual Toy Drive for Bluffton Self Help and the Deep Well Santa Shop.