Hollyvale. Any Place in North Dakota will do



Hi there,

Imagine you are looking for Hollyvale, North Dakota, the town that hoped to put the Christmas spirit back into Kate so she wouldn’t lose her job as a morning talk show host.

Well, the town doesn’t really exist, but the spirit of Hollyvale can be found everywhere in North Dakota – from its small Hollyvale-like towns to its larger cities where you are still treated like a neighbor.

If you are like Kate from the Hallmark movie “Every Christmas has a Story,” then you might truly find many ways to be brought back into the Christmas-loving flock this holiday season. 


Tired of the rat race, you look for a change in a quaint town that epitomizes Main Street - Hollyvale or any number of small towns that dot the North Dakota map. It's Christmas everywhere and, like you, people are coming home to be with friends and family. Nightfall comes early in the winter and shops and stores are aglow as snow falls lightly, illuminated by decorated streetlights. You peer inside the window of mom-and-pop shop and see two people you haven't seen for years enjoying a warm drink and sharing a laugh by the fireplace. Join them, and all your troubles melt away, lost in the stories of days gone by.

Afterward, you take advantage of late shopping hours to find the perfect gift because you are reminded of what the season truly is about - giving. You make your way back home or to your friend's place or even a unique bed and breakfast, wrap your gift and put it under the tree. Then you wait for the big day, making sure to connect with something you lost years ago - the holiday spirit.

Traditions, friends and families run deep here and people can find those traits in many places. Even the most cynical person will come out of their shell after watching one of the holiday parades of lights. Watch some floats, head into a local eatery with friends and the cold winter night just doesn’t seem so cold anymore.

Maybe Tiny Tim can put Scrooge in the holiday spirit. The town of Garrison transforms into an English hamlet for three weekends each November and December. At Dickens Village Festival, guests get food and drink from street vendors and ride around town on a double-decker bus before taking in “A Christmas Carol.” The town of Medora puts a holiday spin on the Old West with Cowboy Christmas. There you are likely to rub elbows with real cowboys and their take on the holidays.

 Some winters, it might seem like the Siberian Express is rolling through the state, but it’s really the lighted Canadian Pacific Holiday Train that will make six stops in North Dakota, December 13 and 14, in the cities of: Hankinson, Enderlin, Carrington, Harvey, Minot and Kenmare. Each stop includes live music, donations for local food banks and thousands of lights, everything that makes the season special.

Of course, gift-giving is also a big part of the season. Can’t find a Turboman? Look harder at one of the 

many season arts and crafts and holiday gift shows like The Big One Art and Craft Fairs and Pride of Dakota Holiday Showcases.

Finally, the greatest thing about the holiday season is spending time with loved ones. They bring joy to the season and help you reconnect with what’s most important – friends and family. Even Kate found her Christmas spirit – in Hollyvale.

But if these don’t send your heart soaring and get you back into the Christmas spirit, head back to Google and type Whoville. It’s not far from Hollyvale, and not even the Grinch could resist what he found there.