The Optimist’s guide to a holly, jolly Christmas

Do you hear those sleigh bells ringing but can’t think of anything to do for the holidays? Do you have the urge to rock around the Christmas tree but don’t know which songs would get you in the best holiday mood? With the help from the Optimist, you’ll be sure to have a holly, jolly Christmas. So grab a cup of hot cocoa, find your favorite pair of Christmas socks and be sure to bundle up with a fuzzy blanket, because baby, it’s cold outside.

Bloomington is known for its beautiful scenery, and that doesn’t change for the holidays. Downtown Bloomington is the best place to go to grab a warm drink from one of the cafes and see thousands of gorgeous Christmas lights. South junior Sofi Rife said she loves walking the downtown streets at night to see the lights.

“The sweaters on the trees really add to the holiday looks,” Rife said.

For more adventurous holiday lovers, the Frank Southern Ice Arena is a great place to spend the day. Jasper Kehoe, a sophomore at South, says his favorite time to go is during Lunar Skating hours.

“They always play really good music, and they use strobe lights and special effect lights in the arena,” Kehoe said.

Frank Southern Ice Arena is the best place to go to enjoy a fun-filled day of skating with friends and family.

The Indianapolis Zoo is also known for its holiday festivities and is very popular for people of all ages. It was the first zoo in the nation to host annual holiday festivities, and it has been a tradition for many people for over 50 years. Children can meet Santa in his barn under the Bicentennial Pavilion and pictures can be taken under the decorative arch with Santa. Another popular attraction is the tunnel of lights that leads guests from Santa’s Village to the rest of the park. Many of the zoo’s animals will be out to join the fun, and all of the indoor exhibits will be open as well.

While there are many awesome things to do during the holidays, some people would rather trade in the coat and gloves for a blanket and pajamas and cozy up by the fireplace to watch a classic Christmas movie. Rotten Tomatoes created a list of the top 50 best Christmas movies, including: White Christmas (76 percent Rotten Tomatoes), Home Alone (63 percent Rotten Tomatoes) and Mickey’s Christmas Carol (100 percent Rotten Tomatoes). Dee Lynch, a junior at South, says her favorite Christmas movie is Elf. Whereas South senior Sean Bridges agrees with Rotten Tomatoes on Home Alone.

“It’s the all time best Christmas movie,” Bridges said.  

As for holiday tunes, the variety of South student opinions highly contrasted with what the rest of the world had to say. Harper’s Bazaar ranked “All I Want For Christmas,”“Run Rudolph Run” and “Jingle Bell Rock” as some of the best Christmas songs ever. Juniors Dee Lynch and Citlali Ruvalcaba said that their favorite songs are “Last Christmas” by Wham! and “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” by Andy Williams.

The Optimist hopes you enjoy all of the festive activities Bloomington has to offer and wishes you a very merry holiday season!