Friday night we bundled up and headed downtown for the annual tree lighting ceremony. This was the first time that either of us had ever been to the tree lighting and we had a lot of fun, despite the cold (I should say that I was cold because I wore flats...flats that did not cover my entire feet because I was dumb and didn't wear boots...). One of the many cool things about the night was that Central Market open just for that evening, in addition to their usual 6am-2pm hours, they were also open from 5pm-8pm. We got downtown around 6pm so we had some time to mill around market before the main festivities started in The Square at 6:30. Seth treated himself to a mocha from a local coffee shop that has a stand in market and also had a hot waffle smothered in chocolate syrup and powdered sugar for "dinner."
At 6:30 we headed to The Square, the streets were blocked off so there was plenty of standing room near the tree, and a local theater company put on a little Christmas show which was a lot of fun. Then Santa showed up and curtesy of the local fire company, arrived in a cherry picker on a firetruck and scaled up the hotel that you can see behind the tree and ended up climbing out of the cherry picker and onto the balcony. That only made me slightly nervous. Ha. Then they finally turned the tree lights on.
I am pretty impressed with the city's Christmas tree this year. Last year it was tiny and a bit sparse and badly decorated so really anything would be an improvement but they made a big improvement this year. We had so much fun at the tree lighting, it was great to be out in the community to kick off the Christmas season. We plan on making this a a family tradition as a way to kick off the Christmas season.
How do you and your family kick off the Christmas season? Do you have a similar tree lighting ceremony in your little (or not so little) city?