SPARTA, NJ - New Jersey’s largest German Christmas Market is only a few days away to opening, but already the stunning scenery of Lake Mohawk and its beautiful Boardwalk has become a bustling nerve center of excitement as the village of volunteers go about their set up.

Run and operated by a volunteer committee of local ladies, the Christmas Market brings Sparta together in a way that no other event accomplishes throughout the year.

There is no entry fee but donations are encouraged as the mission of the market is to raise funds for local charities. The German Christmas Market is open to the public on Saturday, December 2 from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. and on Sunday, December 3 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

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Park and Ride is available from Sparta Middle School, Blue Heron Park & Ride and Sparta Train Station on Station Road beginning at 9:30 a.m. This service is provided for free though market organizers suggest a $1 donation to support the local charities associated with the market.

The entertainment schedule for this year's market:

Saturday, December 2, 2017

10:30 am             Hopatcong Schools Holiday Ensemble

11:30 am             Garden State International Folk Dancers

1:00 pm               Acting-a-Part

2:00 pm               Vernon HS Meistersingers

3:00 pm               No Strings A’Capella

4:00 pm               German Language School of Morris County

5:00 pm               Anyway Studios

6:00 pm               Sparta Middle School German classes

7:00 pm               Sparta High School German Classes

8:00 PM               The Alley Kats

Sunday, December 3, 2017

11:00 am             Sussex County Community College Campus choir

12:00 pm             Harmony in Motion

1:00 pm               Lenape Valley German Folk Club

2:00 pm               Children’s Chorus of Sussex County Concert Choir & Young Men’s    Ensemble

3:00 pm              OPEN

4:00 pm               Morris Hills HS Musikanten

Planning begins much earlier in the year and culminates with local builders donating their time to erect the charming Huts that greet everyone at the boardwalk entrance. This huge undertaking is orchestrated through Ron Donner of Donner Construction, T Love of the Sogihuggles Children’s Foundation as the team leaders who are in turn aided by the Home Depot of Newton using the opportunity as a team building day, while the Sussex County Sherriff’s Department brings folks that need to complete community service & Knoll Heights properties send their Facilities crew to support the community. Additional muscles are at hand from the Sparta Athletic Club.

 

 

Once the Huts are up, the rest of the preparations for the Market can get ahead.

The Sparta Kiwanis decorate the boardwalk with festive lighting as Regi Phillips with his crew of Elves set the garland (loaned by Nesters Greenhouse,) as the Master Gardeners of Sussex County decorate the main Huts with garland.  

Meanwhile Shawn Delahanty of Delahanty Construction erects the Santa Hut & Barn Candy takes on the responsibility of turning the Santa Hut into a magical grotto welcoming excited children. The Santa Hut is this year sponsored by the Nicholson Family.

As all of this takes place Ideal Farms of Lafayette delivers & donates trees to add the finishing touches to the Boardwalks transformation. These trees are then in turn picked up at the end of the Market on Sunday night and get  distributed by United Way around the County to those in need . Meanwhile Carl form Rev it Up totally donates the use of a U-Haul truck for transporting the Committee’s authentic German Merchandise.

As the day approaches, the Entertainment tent goes up – this year the warmth is being donated from Suburban Propane, keeping the performers and their eager audiences toasty warm from the elements.

Behind the scenes and away from the excitement building on the Boardwalk the Sussex County Technical School Bake Shop is busy assembling traditional German Linzer tarts that will be sold to raise funding toward the charities that the Christmas Market Foundation committee will be supporting.

Additionally, Sparta Township and the Sparta Train Station are setting out traffic displays advising folks to use the three Parke & Ride locations. The Sparta Train Station is a new location this year and lends its self perfectly to being a partner of the German Christmas Market  as the Toys for Tots Santa Train will be making a scheduled stop there on Saturday afternoon.

For more information on this weekends truly magical Market that is right on your back doorstep, identified as one of the top things to do in the State, please visit www.lakemohawkgermanchristmasmarket.com