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35 Years of Creating Home-Town Holiday Memories
Christmas is in the air. Snow is falling, music is playing, and Hallmark movies are on 24 hours a day. Your Candlelight Walk committee and chamber board are busy just like the elves at the North Pole preparing for a milestone event. I can’t believe that it has been 35 years since Bonnie Ebenhoeh and the Boulevard Association started our quaint tradition. The numerous luminaries, twinkling lights, Christmas music, and decorated businesses put the sparkle of Christmas in Chesaning. Taking a stroll through our village streets is like taking a stroll back in time. We have many great new amenities in our town, but the one thing that time can’t change is good ole fashioned customer service, smiling faces and family ties. You can feel the love and appreciation of being a part of the family of the Chesaning community with every hello, wave and smile from your neighbors.
We are constantly changing and trying to re-invent the festival to keep it alive and fresh. 20 years ago, Darlene Valentine came up with the idea of the “Festival of Trees”, where locals would decorate a tree and you could bid on it and hopefully win your favorite. This, too, has changed a little, it now has become a raffle and we have added wreaths and gifts over the years.
Luminaries, carriage rides, gingerbread houses, roasted chestnuts, carolers, craft shows, and local shopping has become a Thanksgiving weekend tradition in Chesaning. Some new things you will see this year are reindeer (revisited from the past), a petting zoo and Kringle’s Krossing. At Kringle’s Krossing you can do some shopping or participate in children’s activities.
Don’t forget the best part: Stroll down the boulevard amongst the luminaries or hop on a carriage and enjoy the romance of the season with the soft music and the twinkling lights. If you close your eyes and listen carefully you might be able to feel the heartbeat of Christmas past in Chesaning.
We can’t say thank you enough to all of the donors, volunteers and visitors who make the annual Christmas Candlelight Walk a possibility every year. We estimate that it takes thousands of volunteer hours all year long to make this event happen, along with thousands of dollars of financial support. It’s truly a community event, by and for generations of residents in the Chesaning area and visitors alike.
Looking forward to seeing you all on Thanksgiving weekend!
Roberta McIntyre, Chairperson
Candlelight Walk Committee