For those needing a break from last minute gift shopping, there are plenty of events happening this weekend to relax and unwind while still engaging in holiday cheer. Bring the family (and the dog) to the Paws and Claws 5K Run/Walk, catch a Christmas movie at the park, or visit Santa for a photo opportunity. Check this listing for details on these and more.
The Paws and Claws 5K Run/Walk will be at 8 a.m. Dec. 18 at Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area’s Sierra Beachfront. Cost is free and open to all but registration is required by going to https://bit.ly/3IUgXXl by Dec. 17. Proof of up-to-date rabies vaccinations are required for participating pets.
The Texas A&M University-Central Texas Police Department is hosting its inaugural Winter Wonderland event from 6 to 8 p.m. Dec. 17 in the courtyard between Warrior Hall and Heritage Hall, 1001 Leadership Place, Killeen. There will be caroling, face painting, pictures with Santa, ornament decorating, story time, and more. The event is free and open to the community, but visitors are encouraged to bring canned goods to support the campus cupboard, or a toy to be donated to a local shelter.
The Lampasas Movies in the Park event will be at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 17 at W.M. Brook Park Amphitheater, 105 E.E. Ohnmeiss Drive. Admission is free and the featured movie will be “Home Alone.”
The Fort Hood Spouses’ Club is welcoming volunteers to join them for a Wreath Laying Ceremony to honor the graves of veterans at 11 a.m. Dec. 18 at the Killeen City Cemetery, 2408 E. Rancier Ave. To sign up as a volunteer, go to https://bit.ly/3sj0mGC.
The Fort Hood Animal Shelter is hosting a Santa Paws Adoption Event at 11 a.m. Dec. 18 at Petco, 201 E. Central Texas Expressway, Harker Heights. All on-site adoptions will be free at this time.
The Fort Hood Area Military Family Drive-Thru Food Distribution will be from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Dec. 18 at the Food Care Center, 210 N. 16th St., Killeen. Active-duty military, National Guard, Reserve, and veteran families will receive a free bundle of healthy, nutritious food at this event. Pre-registration is required and can be completed by going to https://bit.ly/3E0Iene.
The fifth annual Bend of the River Christmas will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 18 at Reuben D. Talasek Bend of the River, 8109 S. General Bruce Drive, Temple. There will be snow slides, Cowboy Santa, a snow party, treats, vendors, and more. Tickets are $5 per person and kids 2 and under are free. Go to https://bit.ly/3mbOqTj for tickets and more information.
The Real Gun Show will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 18 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 19 at the Bell County Expo Center, 301 W. Loop 121, Belton. There will be firearms dealers, hunting and fishing gear, camping supplies, and more available. Admission is $8 per person and those with a military ID or NRA membership will receive a $1 discount.
Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers will host an Ice-Skating Trip Dec. 22. Transportation will be provided; permission slips are required. Registration is $5 per person and can be completed at BOSS Headquarters, 9212 Old Ironsides Ave., …….