SOUTHINGTON - Horse-drawn carriages clip-clopped down streets, songs of the season filled the air and festive lights were all around Friday at White Christmas in ihe Community.
Families gathered around the town green, bundled up and drinking hot chocolate. Christmas songs sung by Elvis Presley played - with an occasional bleat contributed by Bradley Mountain Farms’ “Goat Ambassadors” dressed in sweaters and Santa hats.
The crowd awaited the lighting of the green and greetings from town leaders.
Dawn Miceli, a town councilor and one of the organizers, took the stage accompanied by fellow Councilors Chris Palmieri and Chris Poulos. She thanked the committee members and sponsors who made the event possible at no cost to taxpayers.
“A lot of work went into this event,” she said. “We have so much going on tonight so make sure to try everything there is to do. We have ornament making at SoCCA (Southington Community Cultural Arts), the Chamber is doing a scavenger hunt, LEAF (Lewis Educational Agriculture Farms) is doing wreath making and we have an ice sculptor. There are hayrides, trolley rides and horse-drawn carriages. There are activities and deals at most businesses and Santa is here, too. Along our Linear Trail, we have an awesome new lighted figure of a nine foot prancing horse.”
Miceli then introduced Tyler Johnson, a 7-year-old who won a townwide contest for the privilege of turning on the green’s lights. After a countdown and a push of a button, reindeer lights and Christmas trees came to life.
“Merry Christmas, happy holidays and God bless you all,” said Miceli.
Families then fanned out to check out the activities around town. In addition to those previously mentioned, the high school’s cheerleaders sang carols from the town green’s gazebo and other carolers sang from the steps of First Congregational Church.
Warren Adams took pictures of his 5-year-old daughter, Peyton, with her face painted as a tiger while she posed near a lighted reindeer.
“We have been living in town for four years and going to all the community events,” said Adams. “This is our second year here. It is a fantastic event for kids and for the whole family. We’re going to go see Santa and we’re looking forward to going on the trolley and making ornaments.”
Melissa and Scott Mulrooney brought their 9-year-old son Nicholas and 8-year-old son Andrew out for a night of fun.
“I love seeing the goats and the tree lighting,” said Melissa Mulrooney. “One of my friends is also doing karaoke here.”
Madison and Michael and their grandmother, Carol, came out to the event for the first year.
“I have lived in town for 45 years and I’ve never been down here,” said Carol. “My grandchildren used to live in Cheshire but since coming here they have been all excited about it. Everyone has been talking about it in school.”
Deanna Cinami brought her 8-year-old daughter, Jenna.
“This is the first time we’ve come to the Southington part of the festival,” she said. “We’ve been to it in Plantsville. We’re excited to see the goats and the carolers.”
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-974-1806 or .