Leon Sherman and Bunny Lincoln led off the festivities Dec 7 at the annual tree lighting ceremony that officially kicks off the Christmas celebration in the city of Eagle Point. A goodly crowd attended the ceremony, awaiting the arrival of the jolly old elf himself. Santa did appear, but his sleigh and reindeer had to remain at the North Pole and even his alternative ride, one of Fire District #3’s engines, scheduled as an escort, was scratched at the last minute due to an emergency call.
None of this however, dampened the spirits of the many youngsters—and adults—that crowded Main Street for the seven o’clock lighting of the tree. During the ceremony, the names of the City’s honored citizens who have passed away were read; names that many recognize as those of individuals exemplifying the spirit of Christmas—and the City of Eagle Point.
The memory program was begun several years ago by Eagle Point resident, Carol Mercer, who had shortly before lost her daughter Sara. As the names were read, the crowd listened intently for those of dear friends or loved ones and those who served with a true spirit of Christmas.
Just about the time the final names were read, a familiar figure, wearing a bright red suit and sporting a long white beard, appeared and a throng of youngsters gathered while adults snapped photos. Santa then led the procession down the center of the street, as can only happen in small town America, to the Ashpole Center at City Hall where even more youngsters awaited his appearance. While the Lions club served their belly-warming chili, the jolly old elf warmed the hearts of youngsters, many of whom brought Christmas lists just to cover all bases.
As usual, Bunny Lincoln had collected an amazing assortment of stuffed animals and after a visit with Santa; youngsters chose one of the fuzzy animals and made off into the cool evening with their parents in tow and a sporting a warm heart.
A special thanks to all who made the evening a success. It is touching to see the smiling faces of youth during this special season and that is the reason those volunteers do what they do. Merry Christmas to all.
Each year the tree is lit in honor of someone’s special service to the city of Eagle Point and this year was no different. But instead of just one person the tree lighting was dedicated to all who volunteer in the community to help make it the special place that it is.