A new Christmas tradition has been established at Indian Lake. The annual Christmas Tree Lighting at the Bridge is in its second year.
“Last year was the inaugural lighting and at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 3, the second annual lighting will take place,” said John Coleman, president of the Indian Lake Area Historical Society.
Sponsored by the historical society, the tree lighting will kick off the Christmas season, striving to engage the whole Indian Lake community to gather for the celebration. “We wanted to do something special for the community to celebrate and kick-off the holiday season,” said Board Member and Trustee Julie Schrader. Schrader was instrumental in the creation and development of this new tradition.
“The bridge will light up with a total of 156 lights, 100 on the top rail of the bridge and 56 on the bottom rail,” said Coleman. The iconic Christmas tree at the very top of the bridge will not be lit until that evening. Symbolizing the beginning of the Christmas season.
The event will take place at the Sandy Beach Bridge, located at Russells Point Harbor across from The Donut Shop.
Pastor Jim Ellington will be the emcee and members of the Indian Lake Middle School Choir, under the direction of Joyce King, will entertain with Christmas carols. The Donut Shop will be open for the event selling Christmas cookies & hot chocolate. Also available under a portable tent, to be erected for the event, will be Indian Lake themed Christmas ornaments for sale.
This year’s ornament being offered for sale is the “Our Lady of Fátima” ornament. “It’s the 100th anniversary of the Miracle at Fátima, which this ornament celebrates.
The very first ornament, offered in 2015, was a replica of the Sandy Beach Bridge and in 2016 it was a directional Indian Head.
The ornament fundraiser was developed three years ago to provide funds for the Historical Society’s projects.
“We are trying to preserve what we have from the past and bridge it to the future,” added Coleman.
The event festivities start at 5:30 with Christmas carols to be sung by the middle school, followed by opening statements by Jim Ellington. Between 5:50 – 6:00 the lighting of the bridge will take place.
Ron Brohm is a regular contributor to this newspaper.