2011 is nearing its completion. So much transpires during a year, some good, some bad. We never know what each day will bring, let alone each year. Every year has a fullness and richness that have a cumulative and exponential effect as it goes by.
To help celebrate 2011 and the beginning of the holiday season, the Chamber is hosting its fourth annual Downtown Holiday Lighting. This event will take place at 5:30 p.m. Monday at the corner of Central Avenue and Ninth Street (please note the new location) with activities to follow in the Trolley Center. Highlights of this event include:
Santa will arrive by fire truck,
Official lighting of the tree by Mayor Matt Bemrich,
Cider, cocoa and cookies,
Free kids photos with Santa,
Schedule at a glance:
5:45 to 6;15 p.m. - Harmony Brigade
6;15 to 6:45 p.m. - Fort Dodge Senior High Choi
6:45 to 7:15 p.m. - St. Edmond Choir
7:15 to 7:45 p.m. - Riley Bird's Band
7:45 to 8:10 p.m. - FDSH String Ensemble
8:10 to 8:30 p.m. - Ernie Kersten acoustical guitar music
Write and mail letters to Santa,
Multicultural kids activities,
Temporary holiday tattoos,
Live holiday music (Harmony Brigades, string quartet, Ernie Kersten on acoustical guitar, Fort Dodge Senior High and St. Edmond choirs),
Kids winter mini-golf and
Central Avenue hayrack rides with voting for your favorite Winter Window Wonderland displays.
Mayor Bemrich will light the tree as soon as Santa arrives around 5:30. Crafts, holiday music, entertainment, cookies, cocoa, hot cider, crafts for children and much more will be in the Trolley Center until 8:30 pm. Free photos with Santa are also available for attendees. This event is free and open to the public.
It's a time for reflection and a time for resolution, a time to slow down, spend time with those most dear to you, and let some of the static go by the wayside. The Holiday Lighting is a perfect way to be together with your family, friends and our community.
This is the time of year that can get to be a little hectic and chaotic. Remember to take the time to allow yourself to have some silence that will refresh and rejuvenate your spirit. Make sure you prioritize this - this serenity will hold you in good stead during life's ups and downs.
We hope you will enjoy the peacefulness of the winter night at the Holiday Lighting; its darkness, its serenity and the feeling of togetherness with one another. Reach out to those who need sustenance - express gratitude for your blessings. Resolve to make the remainder of 2011 and the new year the best they can be.
Amy Bruno is executive director of the Fort Dodge Area Chamber of Commerce.