Boys and girls of all ages gathered Friday night to spread Christmas cheer at the Village of East Williston’s annual Christmas tree lighting.
The crowd of hundreds of children and parents gathered around the tree on the lawn and looked on as Mayor David Tanner and trustees illuminated East Williston Avenue, singing Christmas carols. Though it was cold, the evening event was well attended, Tanner said. After a brief photo session, the crowd migrated to Village Hall for more holiday festivities.
A line wrapped around the building and children crowded the lobby waiting for their chance to sit on St. Nick’s lap and ask for their favorite gifts for Christmas. Cookies and hot chocolate were served in the firehouse down the block.
“The ceremony is a team effort,” Tanner said. “Anytime we can come together as a community, it’s a wonderful evening.”
Tanner also thanked the Village of Mineola for lending the village a boom lift for the festivities, praising the “intermunicipal cooperation.” The village’s Department of Public Works was responsible for most of the setting up and heavy lifting, Tanner said.
In spite of his busy holiday schedule, Santa spent hours listening to children’s wishes Friday night, and will be making house visits on Christmas Eve. For those interested in having Santa visit, information about Operation Santa is available on the village website.
Residents interested in volunteering to be a part of the operation Christmas Eve are encouraged to participate, Tanner said. Information about participation is available from the village office and Fire Department.