Aurora/East Aurora

Main Street shopping district will begin stepping out for the Christmas holidays next week with extended weekend and evening hours and top-hatted high school volunteers opening doors and collecting donations for the Rural Outreach Center on Saturdays.

The “doorman” project, in its second year, is intended to make people feel special as students open shop doors looking formal and dressy in hats and overcoats.

“It creates an atmosphere that people enjoy,” said Gary Grote, executive director of the Greater East Aurora Chamber of Commerce.

Businesses along Main Street district and beyond will begin to stay open longer on “Black Friday” after Thanksgiving: On Thursdays and Fridays many stores will stay open till 8 p.m. Sunday hours for some will go from noon to 4 p.m. Look for open-house-style welcomes of music and refreshments on the “Small Business” Saturday that follows.

Also on that Saturday – Nov. 30 – the Absolute Care nursing home will host its 4th annual tree lighting with horse drawn carriage rides, caroling, photos with Santa, kids crafts, face painting and hot cocoa and cookies starting at 7 p.m. at Aurora Park, 292 Main.

A new Chamber-sponsored holiday shopping encouragement this year is this “buy local” initiative: For every $25 shoppers spend, they can fill out a slip at the Chamber’s office at 652 Main for a raffle drawing of gift certificates worth as much as $200.

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Also this week:

• The Aurora Town Board meets at 7 p.m. Monday at the Southside Municipal Center, 300 Gleed Avenue.

• The last of this season’s farmer’s market will be held from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., Wednesday at the Aurora Village Shopping Center, 123 Grey St.