BRIEFS: Holiday parade, tree lighting on Friday

Lexington's Winter Festival and Holiday Market begins at 2 p.m. Friday in Triangle Park at the corner of Main Street and Broadway.

Arts and crafts vendors will show and sell their work until 8 p.m. Rudolph and Frosty the Snowman will walk around the park and there will be free entertainment. Seasonal food and drinks will be sold.

At 5:30 p.m. the annual Christmas Parade will begin at Midland Avenue and come down Main Street past Broadway and deliver Santa to Triangle Park, where he and Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry will turn the key that activates the Christmas lights on community trees at Triangle Park, the Robert F. Stephens Courthouse Plaza and the Kentucky Utilities Building on Quality Street.

After the 6:30 p.m. tree lighting, the Lexington Singers will perform holiday tunes. Free carriage rides will be available 7 to 10 p.m. Friday and again on Dec. 3, Dec. 10 and Dec. 17. Carriages will leave Triangle Park every 15 minutes.

For children, there will be Santa's Mailboxes in Triangle Park and Phoenix Park to take letters to Santa for express delivery to the North Pole.

Construction training

Applications for the Lexington Minority and Women Construction Training Program are now being accepted by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government. The program kicks off Jan. 11 with classes at the Government Center, 200 East Main Street.

"The program is designed to help minorities and women successfully compete in the construction industry," said Marilyn Clark, minority business enterprise liaison. "This is a serious commitment of time for the businesses who participate. Classes will meet for three hours once a week for ten weeks. We are pleased to have classes taught by Scott Arias, an Eastern Kentucky University professor well versed in construction management, as the primary instructor, along with other business experts."

Topics will include: business planning; business and contract law; insurance and surety bonds; accounting and financial management; drawings and specifications; estimating and bidding; planning and project safety; scheduling; cost management; project cash flow analysis; claims; alternative dispute resolution; administration, management and subcontracts; contracts and documentation. Boxed meals will be served each night.

"We are specifically targeting existing businesses that understand the nuts and bolts of their craft and want the technical, managerial and entrepreneurial skills to take their business to the next level. We know from past experience, the improvement of business management skills prevents potential problems and increases the likelihood of business success," said Dee Dee Harbut, director for special programs at the Kentucky Small Business Development Center.

Applications will be sent to women and minority-owned businesses listed in data bases maintained by Lexington's Urban County Government, the Bluegrass Airport, Fayette County Public Schools and the Small Business Development Center as well as other agencies that work with small business development or you can go to

The deadline for submitting an application is Dec. 10. The minimal cost to each participant chosen for the program is $50. The class is open to a maximum of 15 companies.

For more information, e-mail or call Clark at or (859) 258-3323 or Harbut at or (859) 257-7668.

Luggage for children

Foster and adoptive children need duffle bags, backpacks and luggage for moves from court to foster or group homes, back to birth families or between homes.

While luggage, backpacks or bags can be used, they should be in good condition.

Anyone who has luggage to donate may contact Don Pratt of Lexington, who volunteers to collect the luggage and distribute it throughout Kentucky.

You may reach Pratt at (859) 389-7694 or

Also, Rooster and Rose in Brannon Crossing shopping center in Jessamine County will accept donations during business hours. Call (859) 219-2221.