The Kalona Chamber of Commerce is planning exciting events for its annual Christmas in Kalona festival (CIK) on Saturday, December 7.  Most activities will be at the Kalona Community Building/YMCA with other activities throughout the Downtown area.

“We are really excited about this year’s Christmas in Kalona festival and hope everyone who attends enjoys the day,” commented Jody Larimer,CBI  Bank & Trust Banking Center manager and CIK chair.

Craft/Vendor Show

The Kalona Area Chamber of Commerce and the Kalona Historical Village are teaming up to host the annual Handcrafted and Product Vendor Show on both levels of the YMCA/Rec Center at 511 C Avenue from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. 10 product vendors will be on the second floor (you can take stairs or elevator). Over 20 booths of handcrafters will be on the gym floor.

Mission Market

The annual Mission Market (alternative giving), sponsored by the Mid-Prairie Council of Churches, will be held in the Y from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

There will be Christmas music played in the Y throughout the day.

Walking Stockings

The Walking Stocking returns to the annual event and children can pick up stockings at the Kalona Chamber office, 514 B Avenue, Dec. 7 through Dec. 24. Children can take this special stocking around to participating merchants to get a special holiday gift. Watch for the special stocking poster in the windows of the participating merchants.

Children activities

Santa will arrive on the Kalona Volunteer Fire Department’s firetruck at 12 noon at the west entrance of the Y.

Youngsters will be able to get photos with Santa from 12 noon until 2 pm. 

  Other Children’s activities in the Y/Rec Center include

  • Face painting – to 1 p.m.
  • Ornament and cookie decorating – sponsored by Hills Bank and CBI Bank & Trust – 12 noon to 2 p.m.
  • Gaga Ball in the Racquet ball room from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Cookie Walk

The annual Cookie Walk will again be held in the Velma Skola meeting room at the Kalona Public Library from 12 noon to 2 p.m.

There will be piano music played in the Library during the Cookie Walk.

Kalona Auto Used Cars & Trucks, 110 1st St. (Highway 1), will be having a toy drive all day Saturday, Dec. 7.


Visitors are encouraged to dress in holiday attire if interested in participating in the Christmas Costume contest. There will be a station where participants can take photos and submit for judging. Entries will need to be submitted by 2 p.m. Winners will be announced at 3 p.m. Share your photo with #ChristmasInKalona to enter.

 Kalona merchants are again asked to decorate their store windows if they would like to participate in the Holiday Window Decorating contest. Windows will be judged with winners announced at 3 p.m.

Selected stores are participating in the Christmas Bingo. Pick up your Bingo cards at any one of the participating stores.

Firepits & S’mores

There will be four firepits, where visitors can warm up and enjoy some s’mores as they walk throughout the downtown area,   will be placed in the following locations from noon to 6 p.m

  • Kalona Area Chamber of Commerce, 514 B Avenue, s’mores and wine tasting from Wooden Wheel Vineyards.
  • Kalona General Store, 121 5th Street – S’mores and hot apple cider.
  • Kalona Chocolates, 221 5th Street – S’mores and hot cocoa.
  • Kalona Brewing Company, 405 B Avenue – S’mores and beer samples.

The Kalona Brewing Company will also be showing A Christmas Story inside the restaurant from 4 to 6 p.m.

Free Carriage Rides

Warren and Paula Miller of the Tuscan Moon are again offering Free horse drawn carriage rides from 6 to 8 p.m. to conclude a fun filled Christmas in Kalona Day.

They will also be serving free hot chocolate and cookies to everyone who stops by for a ride.

“Save the date and bring the entire family to downtown Kalona for a fun filled Christmas in Kalona celebration,” Chamber Director Ben Curtis.

Peanuts & Popcorn

Plan to come back to Kalona Dec. 12, 13 and 14th for Yotty’s Ace Hardware annual Popcorn and Peanuts Days and Christmas season sale. There will be free popcorn and peanuts and you can throw the peanut shells on the floor those 3 days.

Check out the specials at the other stores throughout Kalona from now until Christmas. The Kalona merchants are looking forward to greeting and serving you.


The Kalona Area Chamber of Commerce would like to thank the following businesses for their sponsorship or in-kind services for the 2019 event.

Capper Automotive, CBI Bank & Trust, Kalona Auto, Kalona Brewing Company, KCTC, Kalona Chocolates, Kalona General Store & Eatery, Kalona Creamery, Kalona YMCA Recreation Center, Gingerich Well & Pump Service, Hills Bank, The News, Southeast Iowa Insurance, and Stitch N Sew Cottage.