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Waynesboro lights up for Christmas season

December 02, 2007|By ASHLEY HARTMAN

WAYNESBORO, PA. - Santa Claus came to Waynesboro on Saturday night to illuminate the three trees clustered on each corner of the square.

Waynesboro's annual tree-lighting ceremony, "Yuletide in Waynesboro," included entertainment, giveaways, kettle corn, hot chocolate and a 7-foot candy cane.

"It's just a way for people to come down and get the holidays off on the right foot," said Carole Malin, manager of Mainstreet Waynesboro Inc.

She said a Christmas committee made up of people from Mainstreet Waynesboro Inc. and the Greater Waynesboro Chamber of Commerce decided to have three trees on each corner of the square.

"Last year, we had one tree on each quadrant and people complained there weren't enough lights," Malin said. "We chose cedar trees because they are very old fashioned."

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Emceed by Bob Steele of 104.7 WAYZ, the ceremony began with entertainment from the Wayneaires, a choral group from Waynesboro Area Senior High School, directed by Eric Griffith.

"It's just a lot of fun to be involved with community events," Griffith said. "We thought we'd come down to usher in the holiday season."

The group's show is called "Yule be Swinging" and is a medley of Christmas tunes, Griffith said.

Other entertainment included Kaleigh Smith, a senior at Waynesboro Area Senior High School, singing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" and "Santa Baby," Christmas favorites from the Ladies of Song at St. Paul's AME Church and readings from the Rev. Clay Moyer of Trinity United Church of Christ and radio show performer John Shindledecker.

"It's a nice mix of entertainment," said Debby Hampton, who has lived in Waynesboro her whole life. "I think Mainstreet Waynesboro Inc. has done a really good job."

Although the three trees on each corner of the square are a change from last year, Hampton said "people just need to come out and be supportive."

"I just like to come out and listen to the Christmas music and enjoy the spirit of the season," Hampton said.

Hampton's granddaughter, Kaitie Hampton, 7, said she liked the song "Santa Claus is Coming to Town."

"She's waiting for the candy cane and Santa," Hampton said.

The 30-pound candy cane was courtesy of Zoe's Chocolate Company of Waynesboro. At the end of the ceremony, children were given the opportunity to hammer a piece off the candy cane.

"I have six hammers, and we'll just hand them around," Malin said.

Jean Simmers, a lifelong Waynesboro resident, attends the tree-lighting ceremony each year.

"We always enjoy pizza and then we come out for the ceremonies," said Simmers, who had five of her seven grandchildren with her at the ceremony. "I'm anxious to see (the trees) lit and see how pretty they are."

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