UPDATE, December 6, 2013: The Ram Pasture tree lighting has been postponed to Wednesday, December 11, due to the weather of Friday, December 6. Same schedule (festivities to begin at 6:30, tree lighting at 7 pm).
Newtown will host three tree lighting events this weekend.
The 29th Annual Ram Pasture Tree Lighting will be Friday, December 6; Sandy Hook Village will host its 12th Annual event on Saturday night; and the Fourth Annual Hawleyville Tree Lighting will wrap up the weekend on Sunday.
The Ram Pasture event is centered around the trees at the corner of Elm Drive and Hawley Lane. Hundreds of luminarias will again surround Hawley Pond and line streets in the immediate vicinity, leading those who are walking from nearby roads (and homes, for some) to the trees.
Members of Newtown Juggling & Circus Arts Club are planning to be at the historic property prior to 6:30, to welcome the earliest attendees with their entertainment.
“They were there last year to entertain the crowd,” Tree Lighting Committee Co-Chair Diana Johnson said. “We can’t wait to see them again.”
Caroling and live music led by the Newtown High School Singers, and a dance performance by the NHS Dance Team will begin at 6:30. Students from Lathrop School of Dance will also participate in the celebration.
The tree lighting will also include, for the first time, a performance by The XY Chromotones, a vocal group based at Newtown High School.
The tree will be lit by at 7, with First Selectman Pat Llodra tapped to be this year’s official tree lighter.
“This is not a political thing,” said Mrs Johnson, of the committee’s decision to offer Mrs Llodra the honorary title. “We asked her to do this because of the leadership she has shown in this town this past year. It’s just remarkable, and this is our way of thanking her.”
No one else was considered for the honor, said Mrs Johnson. “Not this year,” she said.
The evening will continue with visits from Santa and Mrs Claus. Cider and donuts, courtesy of People’s Bank and Union Savings Bank, will be served once the tree is lit.
Sponsored by Sandy Hook Organization for Prosperity (SHOP), the December 7 events in Sandy Hook Center will begin at 4 pm, leading to the lighting of two trees at 6.
This year’s event will include the lighting of the longstanding tree within The Glen, at 2 Washington Avenue, as well as a Norway spruce that was planted in May. The new tree on the opposite corner of The Glen, is at 2 Riverside Road. It was planted behind a brand-new retaining wall and sidewalk, all part of the Sandy Hook streetscape project.
The new tree will reportedly be covered with green and white lights, while The Glen tree will have its traditional multicolored bulbs.
For two hours before the trees are lit, however, visitors to the area of Church Hill Road, Washington Avenue, Riverside Road, and Glen Road will have plenty of activities to choose from.
Among the participants this year will be The Children’s Adventure Center, which will be handing out holiday postcards; Faith At Newtown, with hot cider, holiday trees, and crafts for the kids, offered from the church’s new location at 2 Riverside Road; Family Fun Kuts and Fun Kids Consignments, with $5 hair feathers, temporary tattoos, discount coupons, and refreshments; The Graceful Planet, sponsoring karaoke Christmas carols and holiday songs by the trees.
The Iron Bridge at 100 Church Hill Road will offer raffles of a boy’s and girl’s bike, and drink and food specials; labels and tags will be offering 15 percent off clothing for men, women, and children all weekend; Porco’s Academy of Karate will have an interactive open house; Sabrina Style, offering 10 percent off selected items; Sandy Hook Wine & Liquor, with wine tastings and wine specials; The Toy Tree will be offering 20 percent discounts off most of its inventory, and also handing out 3-D glasses to view the tree lightings; The Villa Restaurant, which will have a Kids Menu for free dinners with the purchase of an adult meal (limited to two per family or group); Village Perk Café, with drink specials; Wesley Learning Center will be handing out jingle bell bracelets; and Wishing Well, with an open house and food samples.
Also, Santa Claus will be hanging out at PJ’s Laudromat.
Members of Sandy Hook Fire & Rescue will provide additional lighting and traffic safety. Firefighters will also be handing out reflective blinkers for children in the crowd.
Hawleyville will host its Fourth Annual Tree Lighting event on Sunday, December 8. It will run from 5:30 to 6:30 pm in the plaza at the corner of Barnabas Road and Hawleyville Road.
Stony Hill Four Corners Association is again organizing and sponsoring the event. Santa and Mrs Claus will be arriving in style, rolling in on one of Hawleyville Volunteer Fire Company’s engines.
Holiday music will be provided by Sound Center for Arts & Mindfulness, and refreshments provided by Papa Al’s Pizza, Hawleyville Wine & Liquor, New Main Moon Restaurant, and hot chocolate courtesy of Big Buddha Cigar Lounge and Hawleyville Post Office.
In the spirit of the season, organizers are also encouraging attendees to spread the joy. Unwrapped gifts and toys for The Newtown Fund are requested.