And so the festive celebrations begin this weekend, with Mansfield hosting a fun-filled day on Sunday from 10 am. The entertainment reaches its climax with a stage show on the Market Place at 3 pm.
The town’s Christmas Market also gets under way on Saturday and runs right through to Wednesday, December 21.
After the success of Sutton’s switch-on last week, it’s the turn in Ashfield of Kirkby on Thursday when a 3D feature light switch-on is the highlight of an evening to remember from 4.30 pm to 7.30 pm.
And let’s not forget Mansfield’s Ladybrook Estate, where its own lights switch-on takes place, with Santa’s help, on Saturday evening.
A host of other Christmas events are also taking place this weekend, so our weekly guide to things to do and places to go has a very festive feel to it.
The places to go include Mansfield’s Palace Theatre, where the annual panto gets under way, Rufford Abbey Country Park, Newstead Abbey, Creswell Crags, Mansfield Museum and the Welbeck Estate.
Before you set off, please check the individual websites of each venue for opening times and admission prices.
1. Christmas party day
This was the scene in Mansfield town centre for the big Christmas switch-on in 2019. And more of the same is promised on Sunday when a fun-filled day of entertainment kicks off at 10 am and leads to a big event on stage on the Market Place from 3 pm to 5 pm. It's a Christmas party day with live music from the likes of East 17, Suki Soul and Ollie Hayes, street entertainment, a dance competition, Santa, Sonic the hedgehog, a snow globe, karaoke and fireworks. Don't miss it! Photo: Rachel Atkins
2. Oh yes it is! It's panto time
The stars line up outside Mansfield's Palace Theatre, ready for the start of its annual panto, 'Peter Pan', on Saturday. Join a star-studded cast for a completely new version of the timeless classic, with the dastardly Captain Hook (played by Marc Baylis, of 'Coronation Street' fame) returning to Neverland and determined to get his ship back. The show, which runs until New Year's Eve, also features Sarah Jane Buckley, who played crazy Kathy Barnes in 'Hollyoaks'. Photo: Brian Eyre
3. Santa belongs in Kirkby
Let's light up Kirkby, says Santa, who will be the VIP star guest at the annual Christmas switch-on in the town on Thursday (4.30 pm to 7.30 pm). The event, organised by Ashfield District Council, will feature live entertainment, funfair rides and a bustling festive market with more than 30 stalls selling a range of food, drinks and gifts. The 3D feature lights switch-on will be at 7 pm. Photo: Chris Etchells
4. Christmas in the courtyard
Every weekend from now until December 18, the twinkle-lit courtyard at Rufford Abbey Country Park will be staging its ever-popular Christmas market. Soak up the festive spirit with the sound of carols and the smell and taste of mulled wine and mince pies while you stroll round a number of craft and gift stalls. The kids can also visit Santa's grotto from 11 am to 4 pm each day. Photo: Submitted