Eighth Annual Festival of Lights Brings Cheer and Joy to Stockbridge Residents

article and photos by Hope Salyer

Christmas music flows through the breeze of the crisp winter air in downtown Stockbridge. The Stockbridge Township Hall is lit up with white Christmas lights. The smell of freshly made kettle corn travels through the air as residents from all around fill the streets awaiting the highly anticipated eighth annual Festival of Lights parade and Christmas tree lighting on Saturday, November 30.

Gordie Kunzelman, the emcee of the night, sparked excitement as The Electric Parade entries arrived at the SAESA building. Local businesses and residents entered into the 2019 Light Parade. The twinkling lights and festive holiday music dazzled a downtown crowd of 600 to 800 attendees. More than 200 Children came away from their visits with Santa in high spirits, as his “nice” list was long this year.

Multiple brightly lit floats, including one from Juel Childcare and Granger, along with Howell Jr Football, rolled past the crowd on downtown Main Street. Floats featured tiny, lighted houses, Disney’s Olaf from Frozen I and II and a painted snow plow. Hot air balloon-fueled heaters on trucks flamed into the sky and warmed the crowd. Local juniors and seniors proudly carried banners declaring the winners of various categories:

• Best equipment: “Lack of interest” Fire department
• Most Comical: Ingham County Road Dept-Western Garage
• Most Original: Livingston Circuit United Methodist Plainfield & Trinity Church
• Most Detailed: Juel Childcare
• Most Creative: Gordie’s Power Equipment
• Best Effort: C & C Micro-Farm

Santa and Mrs. Claus close out the Electric Parade.

Then came another highlight: Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived in a horse-drawn white carriage—a spectacular sight. Santa wished all a Merry Christmas, and the joy of the season could be read on the faces of all in attendance. Children of all ages ended the evening with a lighter heart and refreshed community spirit.

Stockbridge Chamber of Commerce member Geri Uihlein said, “This was made Possible by the Stockbridge downtown development Authority (DDA), Stockbridge Area Chamber of Commerce, Village of Stockbridge and the Stockbridge Township working together. Look for more of these collaborative community events. With this working collaboration our community can achieve anything.”

 

My Body Shop

Grand Marshalls John and Cindy

Stockbridge Police Department lead the parade

The Stockbridge Township Hall lit up for the season.

The smell of freshly made kettle corn fills the air at the eighth annual Festival of Lights in downtown Stockbridge.

Children play with the ice following the judging of the ice sculpture contest.

Johnny and Henry Salyer prior to the start of the parade.

Children and families alike gather on Main Street to watch the parade.

The Salyer and Wireman families stand in front of Cravingz as they wait for the Electric Parade to begin.

Amelia Fletcher awaits the start of the parade.

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2 Comments

  • Geri Uihlein Geri Uihlein says:

    Thank you Hope Salyer for taking the time to write this piece and what I believe is a really strong message From my Heart ….”This was made Possible by the Stockbridge downtown development Authority (DDA), Stockbridge Area Chamber of Commerce, Village of Stockbridge and the Stockbridge Township working together. Look for more of these collaborative community events. With this working collaboration our community can achieve anything.”🙌

  • Bill Wild Bill Wild says:

    Stockbridge will always be home and so good to see this kind of activity. Very nice.

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