By TRAVIS HANDY
Pulaski’s Christmas activities are getting lined up for this Thursday night, when the holidays will be welcomed by the lighting of the town Christmas tree, immediately before the annual Pulaski Christmas parade, which will step off at 7 p.m.
Festivities will begin at 5:30 in Jackson Park. Entertainment will be provided by the Golden Cougar Marching Band, Pulaski Middle School choir, The Sweet Adelines and others. Santa will make an appearance and everyone will have an opportunity to decorate cookies and roast marshmallows before the Christmas tree is lit at 6:45.
Then everyone is invited to line Main Street to enjoy the Christmas parade. This year’s Grand Marshals will be Marine Staff Sergeant Jeremy Austin and his family. Parade goers are encouraged to bring American flags in a show of support for SSgt. Austin, and small flags will be passed out to children along the parade route.
According to Lin Martin, parade coordinator for Pulaski Jaycees, there are 45 entries in this year’s parade, which will include the high school marching band, cheerleaders, homecoming queen, several area churches, Boy and Girl Scout troops, a number of area businesses, the Kazim Characters and everybody’s favorite “Jolly Old Elf,” Santa Claus.
Also on Dec. 6 at 5:45 the Fine Arts Center for the New River Valley will hold its annual tree lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. at the Fine Arts Center Annex on Fourth Street. This year’s theme is “Sounds of the Season.”
The trees will be unveiled to the public at the Lighting of the Trees, at which time a program will be represented by fourth and fifth grade students of Snowville Elementary School, and students from Snowville will also decorate the spotlight tree.
This year’s participants include Beans & Rice Inc., Big Brothers Big Sisters, CASA, Medi Home Health and Hospice, Pulaski Friendship Café, Pulaski Library, Pulaski Theatre and Dionysus Theatre Company, Relay for Life, Snowville Elementary, Sunset Hills Garden Club and United Way. Mantles will be decorated by members of the Hoe and Hope Garden Club.
The Fine Arts Center event is free and open to the public. After the lighting program and introductions of participating groups, those attending are invited to enjoy refreshments and get a closer look at the decorated trees.