Santa is again coming to Springfield. And this year, he’s bringing a bag stuffed with new attractions.
The annual municipal tree lighting ceremony, set for Sunday, Dec. 2, will feature its traditional mainstays of lighting the tree, a dramatic Santa appearance and children singing holiday songs. But this year, the event has been supersized with new features, including a petting zoo, hayrides and more.
“After last year, the office staff and I discussed all year about expanding the event a bit,” Springfield recreation director Mike Tennaro said in an email, adding that they were looking “to create a better community event for all to enjoy."
The tree lighting will again be held outside town hall at Town Hall Lawn and North Trivett Avenue. In the past, the event, was held in the early evenings on a weeknight. To accommodate the added activities, the ceremony’s start time has been moved up two hours to 4 p.m. and re-positioned in the week.
“We are also having the event at Town Hall on a Sunday hoping more families can attend together,” Tennaro said.
Santa Claus will again come to town to make himself available to children following a daredevil descent from the municipal building’s roof via a fire engine ladder. In addition, the afternoon will have hayrides, a petting zoo and an edible craft tables for children.
Tennaro said the expanded program required the expanded program required the assistance of many local organizations, and noted that
Public Works; the fire department, the police force, the FMBA, PBA, the Springfield First Aid Squad; the Office of Emergency Management, the Chamber of Commerce, the Springfield Municipal Alliance, the Rotary Club, volunteers form throughout the town and businesses including the Ice Hut and Mack Camera.
And for those looking to give, local charity Springfield H.O.P.E will be collecting new unwrapped toys and Barnes and Noble gift cards.