Town of Chapin holds annual tree lighting ceremony Sunday
Chapin, SC (Paul Kirby) – The Town of Chapin held its annual Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony at the town hall on Columbia Avenue Sunday evening. Even though the weather outside was frightful, inside it was absolutely delightful as Santa’s helpers in the form of town employees, business leaders and their employees, and lots of others came together to make it a memorable evening for everyone who attended. The official lighting of the tree was the only part of the program that was held outside, and even though it was drizzling rain, very cold, and the wind was bone chilling, the spirit of those in attendance was warmth enough to keep everyone comfortable. Once the crowd did make it outside, there were a few short speeches, a countdown from five by the crowd, and then the town’s tree lit up with beautiful bulbs of many colors as children and adults alike cheered.
Inside the community room prior to the lighting, children had the opportunity to make crafts, enjoy treats of all kinds, and sip decadent cups of hot cocoa as they strolled among the crowd. Many got into the game of entertaining the tykes as there was lots to see and do so that the little ones, even the ones with the shortest attention spans, were enthralled with the hustle and bustle of the room that was more of a Christmas workshop than a town hall. Eventually, Mayor David Knight got into the spirit and read a Christmas story while sitting in a comfortable chair atop the stage that had been transformed into something more like a den. The only people who seemed to be having more fun than the children were some of Chapin’s more senior citizens. For instance, the large contingent in attendance from the area’s American Legion Post all had smiles as the children scampered around the room gazing in wonder as they giggled, ate, and played. Later, Santa himself stopped by with a special elf to say hello and have pictures taken with the children. Only a few of the smallest balked at a personal visit with the jolly old elf himself. The youngest in attendance, a five-week-old newborn, seemed more intent on napping than enjoying his first visit with Santa as parents and other family members snapped pictures in earnest.
After lots of socializing and photographs, the crowd retired to the lobby for caroling with a local duo before heading outside to finally light the tree. Chapin’s Mayor David Knight thanked the staff of the town hall and their community business partners, especially Nicholle Burroughs, for their part in making it such a wonderful night. “Christmas in a small town is always special,” the mayor said. “Perhaps I’m a bit biased, but Christmas in the small town of Chapin is one of the most special times of all,” he concluded.
Businesses and community groups that helped make the celebration a success included Palmetto Enclosures, Caldwell Banker, Ole Oak Barn, Lee Lee Photography, The Lexington Ledger, the Chapin Police Department, Vive Church, The American Legion, The Dutch Fork Historical Association, and the Chapin Garden Club.