Tree Lighting, Christmas Parade usher in holidays this weekend
The holidays officially get popping in Uptown this weekend.
The annual Westerville Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1.
And this year, the Tree Lighting comes wrapped in an expanded Uptown event.
The Tree Lighting will expand to a full evening of Holiday Celebration, from 6-8:30 p.m. Dec. 1. State Street will be closed between East Park and West Home Streets from 5:30-9 p.m. to accommodate foot traffic.
New this year is a Parade of Lights, featuring City vehicles and entertainment decked out in dazzling lights. The parade steps off at 6:30 p.m. Friday from the Home and State streets parking lot, and will travel south to Walnut Street.
Santa will light the tree at 7 p.m. with a touch of holiday magic at Westerville City Hall, 21 S. State St. Strolling entertainers will perform near City Hall through 8 p.m.
Uptown merchants and restaurants will be open for holiday shopping and dining.
Head to Winter Street to enjoy free entertainment, cookies and hot chocolate, courtesy of the City of Westerville.
Holiday pop-up vendors will be available thanks to Uptown Westerville Inc.
Live tree lot on East College
Topping off the Friday events will be a Christmas tree lot on East Main Street for residents to find the perfect tree for their homes.
UWI has partnered with Sambuca’s Market and Greenhouse to bring the tree lot Uptown, to be set up near Cardinal Pizza. You can even preorder your Frasier fir tree now for pickup at the Uptown lot Friday, in sizes ranging from 5 to 14 feet, at the this link. Write “Pick up Westerville” in the special instructions.
Christmas Parade and Rudolph Run
The Rudolph Run begins at St. Paul’s Church, 313 N. State St., at 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Participants first travel south on State, then turn back north at Electric Avenue, to complete the race where they started, at St. Paul’s.
Meanwhile, the parade featuring another appearance by Santa, stages at Westerville South High School. The procession steps off heading north on State Street when the last Rudolph Run participants make the turn at Electric, about 3-3:15 p.m. The parade also concludes at St. Paul’s Church.
State Street again will be closed to vehicular traffic for the Sunday events, from 2-4 p.m., between County Line Road and Electric Avenue.
Start the Holidays Uptown
Lynn Aventino, executive director of Uptown Westerville Inc., said this weekend’s collaborative events give residents a great chance to kick off the season right here in Westerville.
Visit historic Uptown for both events and launch your holidays in style.
“Come to the Tree Lighting, and enjoy the entertainment, shopping, and dining,” Aventino said. “Then select your tree, decorate it, and come back Sunday for the Lions Club’s Childrens Christmas Parade and Rudolph Run.”