If you want to come out to a big holiday party at a downtown Greensboro park, this is your chance: Thursday evening, Dec. 13, when Greensboro Downtown Parks hosts its “Christmas at the Park” celebration in Center City Park.

The organizers of the free event, which will run from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday, managed somewhat unbelievably to book an absolutely huge name – Mrs. Claus – who, as one can imagine, is extraordinarily busy at this time of year.

Jenna Lacey, the programming and marketing manager for Greensboro Downtown Parks, didn’t reveal how the group managed to convince Mrs. Claus to make the trek down from the North Pole to Greensboro, but Lacey acknowledged that everyone is thrilled to have such a huge name on the slate.

Lacey said the event will open with Mrs. Claus reading a story at 6:30 pm.

Story time will last about a half an hour and will be followed by a holiday music concert – including caroling with the Season’s Best Carolers, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., which will in turn be followed by a performance from Fredd Reyes, a local singer/songwriter who’s a favorite among area music fans.  Reyes will sing until 9 p.m.

According to Lacey, a great time will be had by all at Christmas at the Park and she added that absolutely everyone is encouraged to come out since it will, of course, be very family friendly.

“Our events are always open to all ages,” she said.

After Reyes performs, people may choose to go home or stay downtown and continue celebrating in some less family friendly activities at local bars and nightclubs.

Lacey said the recent snowstorm did mean a need for some extra effort from work crews but she said the downtown parks will be ready.

“The City of Greensboro did plow for us,” she said. “Today the children’s area in LeBauer Park is still closed but the rest is open.”

Lacey said there will be something for everyone.

“It will be the final holiday event in the downtown parks of the year,” she said.  “There will be lots of people ice skating and there will be a lot of warmth around the tree.”