The businesses of Downtown Aiken are ringing the holidays in a bit early this year with their Christmas in July celebration from Monday through Saturday.

Windows will be decorated with Christmas displays, as one of Santa's elves visit and roam around. If the elf sees visitors shopping at one of the Christmas in July locations, she may even have a surprise for them to thank them for shopping locally.

All participating businesses will feature special Christmas-like bargains.

On Friday, beginning at 9:30 a.m., bluegrass band Cuttin' Grass will provide live entertainment at the ACTS Resale Store.

ACTS Operations Manager Karen Perry encourages all to come downtown and “see the deal of the day at ACTS Christmas in July Sale. All proceeds support ACTS ministry.”

Cyndi's Sweet Shoppe will be offering fine chocolate and nuts.

Aiken Performing Arts Group will have a table set up in The Alley offering information and ticket sales for their 2013-14 A Season of Music & Mirth.

“Downtown Aiken's Christmas in July is a wonderful opportunity to shop local, enjoy our beautiful downtown and take advantage of the special discounts and savings only offered at this time,” said Jennifer Webb, the administrative assistant of the Aiken Downtown Development Association.

Christmas in July locations along Laurens Street are Aiken Antique Mall, Aiken Center for the Arts, Aiken Dry Goods, Chris' Camera Center, Cyndi's Sweet Shoppe, Elk Eagle Originals, Equine Divine, Lionel Smith Ltd. and Return Engagement. Participating businesses off Laurens Street are ACTS on Hayne Avenue, Palmetto Package & Fine Wines on Park Avenue, The Gun Rack on Richland Avenue and Aiken Performing Arts Group in The Alley. Each participating location is a member of the Aiken Downtown Development Association.

For more information about Christmas in July, call the Aiken Downtown Development Association office at 803-649-2221, email or visit