The Royal Oak Downtown Development Authority (DDA) is spreading holiday cheer this year with the city’s Jolly Days event, which will feature shopping deals, special guests, and seasonal happenings on select days throughout December.
It all kicks off on Dec. 1 with the launch of the annual Downtown Dollars Buy-One-Get-One Program to help support the small businesses in the downtown area.
To participate, shoppers can purchase a Downtown Dollars gift card, which is redeemable at 70 participating area restaurants, bars, retail stores, coffee shops, entertainment venues, and other locations, and receive a bonus gift card of equal value in denominations of $25, $50, and $100. Gift cards are limited to one per person.
Santa will also arrive in town on Dec. 1 and will host meet-and-greets at his Mini House on W. Fifth St. every Friday from 5-9 p.m. through Christmas.
The next day, Dec. 2, sees the return of the popular Royal Oak cookie crawl from noon-6 p.m. During this event, two dozen businesses will be giving a locally sourced cookie to participants who visit their shops.
Tickets for the cookie crawl are $25 a person and are available online.
“Many small businesses see top sales during the holiday season, and we want to do everything we can to encourage visitors to Downtown Royal Oak and shop locally to support small businesses,” Daniel Solomon, Royal Oak’s downtown manager, said in a press release.
“Their success is vital to the economic development in the Downtown Development District, and they help make Downtown Royal Oak the vibrant community it is, and one that residents and visitors continue to enjoy.”
In addition to the events supporting small businesses, horse-drawn carriage rides will be available from 5-9 p.m. on select days. The carriage wagons, which depart from the community’s Holiday Tree, hold up to 16 people and run every 30 minutes.
You can make a reservation for the carriage rides online for a $2 donation.
Free validated parking is available at any of the city-owned parking garages. You can have it validated at any participating retailers, all of which are located within five minutes from the garages.
All profits from the DDA’s Jolly Days will be donated to an area nonprofit, which hasn’t yet been announced.