For generations, the Springfield Regional Chamber of Commerce has been proudly hosting Springfield’s Downtown Holiday Program – lighting the poles, hanging the banners, putting up the tree, coordinating music and caroling for the Tree Lighting Ceremony, and, of course, bringing Santa to town! In recent years, we’ve been happy to team up with Springfield On The Move (SOM) to expand the offerings and bring even more cheer and festivity to the event. The Holiday Program continues to grow, and it truly takes a village to pull the whole thing off!
This year’s program kicked off at 4pm on Friday, December 6th with SOM’s Sticker Map Treasure Hunt. Holiday music filled the air as children and their families explored the luminary-lined streets of downtown, visiting participating businesses and organizations to collect the stickers to complete their maps (and also receive some treats). Once completed, the maps were turned in at SOM in exchange for a holiday surprise! Thank you to Shirley Cooper and Lori Graves Maseda for donating wonderful handmade mittens and hats.
At 5:30, the Springfield Community Band launched into a myriad of festive tunes for carolers, to entertain the crowds in People’s United Bank lot as they eagerly anticipated Santa’s arrival. And then, Hark! The distant sound of sirens could be heard, as Santa’s Firetruck and Police escort made their way to the center of town. Kids ooohed and ahhhed as the flashing vehicles came to a halt, and cheers erupted as Santa himself emerged to greet the crowd with high-fives and “Ho, Ho, Hos.” He made his merry way through the masses to Santa’s House, where he chose a lucky little child to help him flip the magic switch to light the holiday tree. With a flash, and another cheer, the twinkling lights burst on to illuminate the tree, and the shining faces of the waiting people.
Then Santa settled himself in the house to receive his long line of visitors, checking twice to be sure of who was naughty or nice, and giving presents to all the girls and boys. When asked what he wants for Christmas, Turner Shute (age 5) announced “Legos!”
We’d like to offer our gratitude to all the folks who helped to make this year’s event such a success! A huge thank you to HB Energy Solutions for lighting the poles, hanging the banners, and putting up the magnificent tree, donated by Chris and Vanessa Bishop of Christmas Trees At Bishop Farm! Thank you to our partners at SOM for helping to provide family-friendly fun for the community. Thanks to People’s United Bank for providing a safe space for the festivities. Thank you to CERT and the volunteers who helped with directing traffic to keep everyone safe! Thank you to Mascoma Bank for supporting this year’s program. Thank you to Dragonfly Designs for sponsoring free hot cocoa at Flying Crow Coffee Co. Thank you to the Town of Springfield for supporting repairs to the light poles. Thank you to Springfield Police Department for escorting Santa in his exciting firetruck entrance, courtesy of Springfield Fire Department. Thank you to the Springfield Community Band for providing the lively entertainment. Thank you to our friends at Springfield Community Players Theater for assisting in making spirits bright! Thank you to all the businesses and organizations that decorated their windows with enthusiasm and participated in this great event! Thank you to all the individuals who contributed time and effort in so many ways! Thank you to Santa for coming to town, lighting our tree, and visiting with all the girls and boys! And thank you to everyone who came out last Friday night to participate and share in the fun!
Santa will have additional visiting hours at his house in the People’s United Bank lot on Thursday, December 12th, Thursday, December 19th, and Monday December 23rd, 4-7pm, courtesy of the Springfield Regional Chamber of Commerce.