Snellville Kicks Off the Holiday Season with the Christmas Tree Lighting Festival
A combination of perfect weather and community spirit got the Christmas season underway on November 26th, 2011 as thousands of area residents came together on the Towne Green to watch the 30th annual lighting of the city's Christmas tree.
Early attendees enjoyed working on crafts at the Lowe's tent, decorating Christmas ornaments at the Michael's tent or making Christmas cookies at the Rhodes Bakery tent. Others toasted s'mores by the campfire or watched the puppet shows and traveling carolers from Act Up Theater.
The line to Santa's tent was long, as children waited eagerly to give Santa their gift lists. Many people rode in the elegant horse and carriage, rode the Christmas Train, or enjoyed an old fashioned holiday hayride.
As dusk approached, the crowd gathered around the tree to listen to Christmas music from the All in Red band and enjoy performances by the Collins Hill Dance Company, the Snellville United Methodist Church Youth Chorus and the R.D. Head Elementary Chorus.
As snow began falling on the stage area, candles were handed out, and the crowd sang Silent Night. Then, Mayor Kelly Kautz escorted Santa to the stage for the countdown to the moment when the tree was finally lit.
Snellville Tourism & Trade President Don Britt said that the 2011 tree lighting was the best yet. He noted that when the tree was lit, there were more people on the Green than at any prior STAT event. And, he said that with the success of this year's event, the STAT board was already planning for a bigger and better Christmas Festival in 2012.
Enjoy these pictures from the festival: