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Welcoming the holiday season

Area towns plan Christmas tree lighting events

Santa arrived at the intersection of Main and Elm streets in Southbridge by fire engine last year in order to preside over the Tree Lighting with Santa event. (click for larger version)
November 21, 2010
Even though Santa and Mrs. Claus are always quite busy this time of year, they will be making a stop at area town commons as soon as the leftover Thanksgiving turkey has cooled.

The Jolly Old Elf will kick off the season in Southbridge at the town's Tree Lighting with Santa at 5 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 28. Sponsored by The Future of Southbridge, the event is still in need of carolers to participate. School groups, church choirs, civic organizations or just groups of friends are welcome to join the harmony and urged to call Denise Clemence at 508-277-4494 or Monique Manna at 774-230-0156.

In Sturbridge the annual tree lighting on the Town Common — sponsored by the Sturbridge Recreation Committee — will begin at 6 p.m., Friday, Dec. 3 and will include holiday music by Tim Harrington of Tall Heights and Tim Hart of Macy and Heart. A performance by Debbie Sichol's Dance Center will be featured and the Sturbridge Fire Department will provide refreshments. Boy Scout Troop 161 will also be on hand to act as Santa's "security team."

In addition to watching the lighting ceremony, guests may also pick up maps and information pertaining to the Winter Tree Scavenger Hunt presented by the Sturbridge Conservation Commission. Between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, fourteen trees will be decorated on the three Heins Farm Trails and two Camp Robinson Caruso trails, so be sure to pick up a map to help you discover them. People who take pictures of themselves standing in front of all fourteen trees and submit those pictures to the Conservation Commission will be automatically entered into a drawing for gift certificates to local establishments.

Members of the REAS Foundation will also be in attendance to distribute information about energy assistance to people whose loved ones are having trouble staying warm as the temperatures continue to drop. REAS is in the process of promoting its 1K challenge, and all donations sent in response to the challenge will be matched by an anonymous donor.

For more information about the tree lighting ceremony, contact the Sturbridge Recreation Committee at 508-347-2041.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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