Nothing quite says holiday spirit like Christmas lights and trees. On Saturday, two celebrations in Wilmington combined those very things and made for a day that would make even the Grinch smile from ear to ear.
Throughout the day the Women of Wilmington hosted their second annual Festival of Trees. The event, which began last year, has grown tremendously and, is well on its way to becoming a local holiday tradition.
This year the Festival took place over the course of two days and grew from 59 donations of trees, mini trees and baskets to 79. With just enough snow falling outside the windows to add a bit of character to the background, the festival offered locals an opportunity to purchase raffle tickets and take a chance on winning their favorite tree.
Trees, mini trees and baskets were donated by individuals and businesses all over town and featured everything from cash and lottery tickets to Taylor Swift Tickets and gift cards. Each one was beautifully decorated and offered people a chance to make a donation, potentially win a great prize and help support a great cause all at the same time.
“The Women of Wilmington (W.O.W.) did an outstanding job,” said local resident Jackie Rebeiro. “The trees were beautiful and it was very well run. It's a great tradition for the kids to go see the trees every year.”
Next on the list was Wilmington’s annual tree lighting ceremony. A much loved holiday tradition here in town, the tree lighting ceremony is yet another reminder of how important family and community really are.
As Former Town Manager Michael Caira said last year, “The ceremony is a long held tradition that seems to increase in popularity each year. It is yet another example of the strong community spirit that exists in our town. These are the kind of events that make Wilmington special.”
With hot chocolate, cookies, hayrides and, of course, the much loved annual ice sculpture, the ceremony is always a favorite for families all over town.
For younger residents, of course, nothing quite compares to seeing Santa arrive thanks to a ride from the Wilmington Fire Department. Ready to get the holiday celebration under way, Santa led the countdown to the moment the lights went on. Later in the evening he posed for photos with children inside the 4th of July Building.
Made possible by The 4th of July Committee along with a lot of hard work by Wilmington Town workers, the Tree Lighting was, once again, an evening to remember.
Check back with Wilmington Patch on Monday for photos from the holiday weekend.