HUGHESTOWN — Holiday cheer filled the chilly air outside of the borough building Sunday evening for the town’s first annual Christmas tree-lighting event.
Dozens of families turned out for the lighting of an ornament-adorned tree, hot chocolate, candy canes and even an early visit from Santa Claus.
Marian Quick, a member of the Hughestown Parks and Recreation Board, was handing out hot beverages to the crowd before the tree lighting began.
“This is going to be our first year doing the event, trying to see if we can get the community together and things like that,” Quick explained. “It’s nice because the communities are all trying to get together to do things, like Pittston City, Duryea, Dupont, West Pittston all have things going on tonight, so it’s nice to have a home town type of feeling for people and bring more families back.”
Fellow board member Mary Golya agreed.
“There’s so many things going on in all the different towns that we’re hoping that all of our Hughestown community comes to our event,” she said.
Despite events in other locales, the parking lot of the borough building was still crowded with kids and kids-at-heart, enjoying the community event.
“It gives a sense of family. It makes a family-safe zone where anyone can feel free to stop by,” Quick said.
After Santa arrived in the Hughestown ambulance, he flipped the switch to light the tree and invited the children to sit on his lap to recite their wish lists.
Gabe Keezer, 9, of Hughestown, told Santa that he wanted a Nerf gun. His brother, Connor Dymond, 6, asked for money so he “could become a millionaire.”
“It was awesome,” said Jason Keezer, a lifelong resident of Hughestown. “Hughestown does a lot of nice events in the summer for the kids. For Easter and Halloween too.”
As for other seasonal events in Hughestown, St. Peter’s Lutheran Church on Rock Street is having a caroling session at 3 p.m. on Sunday, and the hose company is having a breakfast with Santa on December 17. After the breakfast, Santa will ride on the back of a firetruck to hand out candy canes and collect food pantry donations across town.
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