The holiday season will officially kick off Friday night in Jefferson when Santa arrives for the annual tree lighting.
Several hundred residents are expected to attend the holiday celebration that will take place at 7 p.m. at the gazebo at the Jefferson Township Municipal Building.
The trees all around the municipal complex will be lit in addition to the Christmas tree in the gazebo that arrived to the township on Monday.
On Wedneday, about a dozen Red Hat Society members—a volunteer group of women in the township—decorated the tree and prepped the gazebo for the big night.
On Friday night, the trees will be lit by this year's Citizens of the Year winners, Eileen Grady and John Focacci. The two residents were recognized by Mayor Russell Felter in July at Jefferson Township Day for their outstanding community service.
"It's a nice evening, and it's really amazing," Recreation Program Coordinator Carol Punturieri said. "They do a countdown, pull the switch, and everything lights up. It's just really beautiful."
Once the lights are on, the children will gather for reading of the "The Night Before Christmas" by Jefferson Township Council President Richard Yocum as they await the arrival of Santa Claus.
The night will also be filled with holiday music performances by local DJ Matt Scognamiglio and the Jefferson Township Middle School Chorus.
Refreshments including hot chocolate, cookies, and snacks will be provided by the Recreation Department inside the Municipal Building at the end of the event.
The tree lighting kicks off a weekend full of holiday events. Christmas in the Village will take place all day on Saturday, and there will be several activities going on Sunday including a performance of “Miracle on 34th Street” at the Senior Center.