Karen Mal at Door County Christmas Market

Karen Mal & Friends

Daily Performances:

 Fridays & Saturdays
(Nov. 26-27, Dec. 3-4, Dec. 10-11):
1:00-2:00 pm and 5:00-6:00 pm

(Nov. 28, Dec. 5, Dec. 12):
1:00 pm

Christkindlmarkt Door County is privileged to announce that Karen Mal & Friends will perform live Holiday music on-stage twice a day on Fridays and Saturdays — and once a day on Sundays — in our Koessl Food Barn. From ancient carols to the modern classics, come sing along or make a request. Karen’s special guests will include Zephyr Ciesar, Jeanne Kuhns and Maegan Daniels.

“I love Christmas music. Enthusiastically and unapologetically. In our home we start listening to Christmas music on Thanksgiving, and earlier if I can get away with it. I never get tired of it. People roll their eyes when I say that, but I don’t care. I love it. I love it all. Religious and secular. From the oldest medieval carols to Vince Guaraldi’s “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Bing Crosby and Perry Como. Nat King Cole and Robert Goulet. I will even admit that I listen to the Partridge Family Christmas album.

“I grew up in a troubled household, but Christmas was my mother’s happy time. So we were all happy. She transformed into an artist during the holiday season, and she positively glowed. She decorated our house with an elegant, gorgeous fervor that I’ve never seen in any other home. Even the presents under the tree were wrapped and arranged magnificently. The tree was artificial and perfect, and mystifyingly, it looked exactly the same every year, with delicate glass sparkly ornaments spaced carefully. My mother had absolute veto power on ornament placement. Lots of twinkly lights, only the tiny ones, and never, ever any tinsel. The mess would have been unacceptable.

“She would start baking in early December. I can still see her now, with her tidy hair, a dish towel over her shoulder, humming the carols day and night. She baked at least 6 varieties of cookies, arranged painstakingly on tin foil-wrapped cardboard platters, for gifts. The kitchen was warm and the air smelled like cookies and Christmas music, played by a needle on vinyl on our gigantic stereo in the sunken living room.

“To me, Christmas music is one of the few folk music traditions we have in our culture. And to this day, it still feels like a soundtrack to well-being and family, and the uncrushable hope for peace, both on Earth, and within our homes.”