'Tis the season for Christmas programs around the area. Just about every school system and a number of community organizations are staging programs and concerts of one kind or another in the coming weeks.

One that is happening Saturday night is the Mark Twain Chorale's annual Christmas concert. This is the 53rd year the Chorale has presented a holiday concert.

Something unique about this year's offering is the inclusion of the new Hannibal-LaGrange University String Orchestra as the Chorale's special guests.

This year's concert begins at 7 p.m. Saturday in the Parker Theatre in the Roland Fine Arts Center at H-LGU. Admission is by free will donation.

The Chorale is directed by Lori Scott, with Bonnie Campbell serving as accompanist. The Orchestra is directed by Jane Griffen.

I've had the opportunity to attend and record several MTC Christmas concerts for playback on KHMO in recent years, and they always do a wonderful job in presenting the music of the season, some of which you've probably heard before, but some you may not have.

If you're not doing anything Saturday night and need a good dose of holiday cheer, here's your chance.