A world of Christmas traditions

Ever feel as though you’re lacking in culture? When you think of Christmas, do you only think of holiday hams, sugar plum fairies, snow-covered landscapes and that jolly fat guy who wears all the red? Then you need to diversify. Make yourself culture hip and learn about Christmas around the world—or simply enlighten yourself to the diverse holiday traditions that can be found throughout the winter wonderland streets of Reno and Sparks. The 16th Annual Hometowne Christmas event at Victorian Square in Sparks is a shining example of cultural diversity. “You can shop for Native American and Honduran art, meet the Honorary Consul of Ireland, learn about African mask making and more,” says Gabriel Ornelas, a special events coordinator for the city of Sparks. The event runs 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Dec. 7. A parade begins at 1 p.m. The celebration showcases colorful costumes, authentic foods from around the world and dance and musical performances featuring Irish, Filipino, African, Native American and Folklorico groups. For the kids, there’ll beThe Peanut Cracker-The Story in a Nutshell, as well as craft activities. The event wraps up with the lighting of a 60-foot community Christmas tree.