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Hills and Dales to pass out gingerbread making kits for free Saturday

Since 2012, Hills and Dales has hosted an annual gingerbread making event for families during the holiday season. This Saturday Hills and Dales is not hosting the event on its property but still plans to distribute kits for free. 

“This year will be very different in that our process is safety oriented but just as fun,” said Communications Manager Christy Gresley. “Families will still be able to decorate together from the comfort and safety of their own home and pick up kits without leaving their vehicle.”

Gresley said families can drive through the main entrance at 10 a.m. Saturday, and they’ll be directed around to the front of the Visitors Center, where staff will be waiting to hand out the free kits through the window. 

“Be sure your littles are present to receive their kit,” Gresley said. “Supplies are limited and will be handed out on a first come, first served basis of one kit per child.” 

More than 2,250 kits have been distributed since beginning the Children’s Christmas Celebration tradition in 2012. 

“We continued the tradition to honor the Callaway family’s legacy of hospitality and desire to enhance our community,” Gresley said. “Just because we aren’t able to provide indoor festivities as we have in years past such as photos with Santa and singing-a-long with Mama Jama this year, we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to help spread Christmas cheer. While remaining socially distant, of course.” 

Gresley said Hills and Dales has gone through more than 100 pounds of powdered sugar to make icing and more than 2,200 graham crackers to assemble the houses.  Although the event is not in person this year, Gresley said there still are other opportunities around the estate this year. 

“Holiday tours are in full swing here at the estate,” Gresley said. “You can watch a short film about the families who cultivated the garden and built the home, see our new exhibition “Spinning a Yarn: Unraveling the Callaway Mills Story,” stroll in the garden and tour the first floor of the Callaway family home fully decorated with fresh greenery for Christmas. Be sure to stop in the greenhouse to warm up and be mesmerized by the spectacular poinsettia tree.”