PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (WOWK) – The city of Portsmouth Ohio was full of smiling faces and holiday cheer for the annual Winterfest celebration kickoff.
The local non-profit organization known as Friends of Portsmouth started this event last year with the hopes of bringing the community together and highlighting one of their largest festivals of the season.
The community of Portsmouth was full of the Christmas spirit during the start of the month-long event. Winterfest brings with it an ice skating rink with real ice, a tubing inflatable slide, carriage rides, and local food and merchandise vendors.
This is the second year that Friends of Portsmouth has hosted this event and last year the festival caught the attention of a national television network. The Hallmark Channel has named the city of Portsmouth as its 2019 Hometown Christmas Town.
The streets of Portsmouth are decked out with holiday lights and other Christmas decorations in celebration of the seasonal event, including frequent visits from Ole Saint Nick. Residents tell us that Portsmouth is very much deserving of this honor as the city displays a Christmas town “vibe.”
When you come here, no matter what you’re doing you feel like you’re in a Hallmark movie. It just makes the holiday season so much better in Portsmouth.Heather Coleman
The Friends of Portsmouth group has been planning events like these for the past two years with the goal of revitalizing the city of Portsmouth and shining a light on positive aspects of the city.
The city was once deemed as “America’s Pill Mill” degrading the town and causing a drug epidemic. Now, residents who are still living in Portsmouth want to change the way the world views their city.
Friends of Portsmouth has hosted two world record-breaking events in the past two years and now they are hoping to add one more to their list. On December 14, 2019, the Portsmouth community will attempt to break the Guinness World Record of “Most people wrapping presents simultaneously.”
Information on the Friends of Portsmouth group as well as the Winterfest schedule can be found here.