Diners enjoy conversation and good food at the St. Patrick Catholic Church Altar Society bazaar in Vale, held last Friday and Saturday. (The Enterprise/Kristine de Leon)

VALE – Shoppers kicked off the holiday season last Friday with Moonlight Madness, thronging through downtown Vale businesses for an evening of shopping and socializing.

But the shopping action was just a first course, as the holiday events menu continue into the weekend with more events into December.

This Thursday, Thanksgiving Day happenings start early for some hardy residents participating in the annual Thanksgiving Day Bob McAlpine Memorial Turkey Trot at Treasure Valley Community College. 

One of the more popular races in the valley, runners will take to the course at 9 a.m. from the TVCC gymnasium. The cost to enter is $25, or $30 the day of the event, with T-shirts for participants.

Spectators can expect to see a few turkey hats and other colorful costume touches in the crowd. 

Proceeds go to the TVCC cross country teams. For information, contact Blas Guerra at 541-216-1020 or Dawnita Anderson, 541-216-1722.

Even those who don’t burn off calories with a run may want to fuel up at holiday meals in Malheur County. Among the offerings on Thursday:

• The Starlite Café in Vale will hold a free community breakfast from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. at 152 Clark St. 

• From noon to 2:30 p.m., there will be a free community dinner at the Nyssa Senior Center, 316 Good Ave.

• The First Christian Church at 180 N.W. 1st St., in Ontario will hold a free dinner from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday.

The holiday weekend events continue Friday and Saturday, as the Ontario Boulevard Grange hosts a Christmas Bazaar from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The grange is at 3890 Oregon Highway 201.

Next Monday, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce forum will present the Winter Wonderland Queen coronation at noon at the Clarion Inn, 1249 Tapadera Ave.

If you are looking to enjoy some holiday sounds, the Treasure Valley Instrumental Bands will present “A Fireside Christmas” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27, at the Meyer-McLean Theater in Four Rivers Cultural Center. 

Friday, Nov. 30, the Ontario Elks Lodge’s annual Santa breakfast begins at 6:45 a.m., at 20 S.W. 3rd Street Ontario.

 Also Nov. 30 there will be a Christmas Spirit and Lighting Ceremony at Four Rivers Cultural Center from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Santa will stop by for photos with the children, and the event will feature caroling, a Readers Theater Performance, a light show, and refreshments for purchase.

Leroy Anderson’s “A Festive Christmas” concert will fill the Meyer-McLean Theatre with holiday music at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30. The concert will feature the Treasure Valley Chorale, TVCC Center Choir, the Nyssa 6th grade choir and the Treasure Valley Symphony and Weiser Youth Symphony. The ticket office opens at 6:45 p.m. For more information, call 541-881-5950.

The Malheur County Fairgrounds will host a Holiday Bazaar over two weekends – Nov. 30 – Dec. 1, and Dec. 7-8 – in the commercial building at 795 N. W. 9th St.

A highlight of the season each year is the Winter Wonderland Parade, set for 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, in downtown Ontario. “Sweet Nutcracker Christmas” is the theme for the event, presented by the Ontario Area Chamber of Commerce and parade sponsor Malheur Enterprise.