Tree lighting ceremony heralds holiday season


Idaho Falls is preparing its annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at Civitan Plaza. 

The lighting ceremony is organized by the Idaho Falls Downtown Development Corp. and the city of Idaho Falls. The ceremony starts at 4 p.m. Saturday with holiday carols and a performance by the Kori Bird Kidz Company Choir Show will perform.

At 5 p.m. Idaho Falls Mayor Rebecca Casper will arrive with Santa Claus via horse-drawn carriage to turn on the lights. The main tree will be surrounded by 17 Christmas trees decorated by local schools and other groups. Guests will be served hot cocoa, and horse-drawn trolley rides will be available before the event. The ceremony is expected to draw a crowd of 300 to 500 people.

“We really want to bring awareness to what a wonderful downtown we have,” said Catherine Smith, executive director of the Idaho Falls Downtown Development Corp. “It really is the cultural hub of Idaho Falls.”

Carmen Peters will sing the National Anthem after the Color Guard posts the colors.

A news release states the tree is decorated to honor the men and women of Idaho who have served or are serving in the military, with an ornament dedicated to each branch of service, an ornament for each battalion of the Idaho Army National Guard and an ornament for each Idaho Gold Star soldier since Sept. 11, 2001, and a purple ribbon for every Idaho service member killed in action.

Reporter Johnathan Hogan can be reached at 208-542-6746.