The sea­son be­gins

Court­house light­ing set for Thurs­day

The Covington News - - NEWTON @ PLAY - By Jenny Thompson

Ev­ery year Cov­ing­ton res­i­dents look for­ward to the an­nual Court­house and Christ­mas tree light­ing on the down­town square.

This year lu­mi­nar­ies and a Hol­i­day Fun Team will add to the familiar dec­o­ra­tions and car­riage rides.

Main Street Cov­ing­ton Di­rec­tor Josephine Kelley said Santa and his sleigh will ar­rive at 5 p.m. Thurs­day at his Vic­to­rian work­shop at Ram­sey’s Furniture An­nex on Clark Street.

“This year we’ve sort of re­done the work­shop and added new pieces to it,” Kelley said, “and this is the sixth year we’ve hosted Santa vis­its at Ram­sey’s on Thurs­days and Satur­days un­til Christ­mas.”

Com­pli­men­tary car­riage rides around the square start at 5:30 p.m. this Thurs­day and will con­tinue, spon­sored by a dif­fer­ent down­town busi­ness each week, from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Thurs­days un­til Christ­mas.

At 6 p.m. Thurs­day, the Court­house light­ing spon­sored by the Arts As­so­ci­a­tion in New­ton County and the New­ton County Board of Com­mis­sion­ers will take place.

“One of the spe­cial el­e­ments of the evening is when we an­nounce the per­son or per­sons who will light the court­house,” Kelley said.

In­di­vid­u­als or or­ga­ni­za­tions se­lected to light the court­house have to be nom­i­nated in a 500-word or less es­say and ex­hibit a ded­i­ca­tion to com­mu­nity ser­vice or lead­er­ship.

At­ten­dees also will en­joy can­dle­light shop­ping thanks to Lu­mi­nar­ies of Hope. Rep­re­sen­ta­tives will be on hand on the square dur­ing and af­ter the light­ing sell­ing the lu­mi­nar­ies.

Pro­ceeds from the lu­mi­nar­ies will ben­e­fit New­ton County Re­lay for Life and lo­cal breast can­cer aware­ness pro­grams.

“ Some­thing new we’re do­ing this year is a Hol­i­day Fun Team on the street giv­ing out bal­loons and tem­po­rary tat­toos as well as Main Street Bucks to spend down­town,” Kelley said.

Cov­ing­ton Pilot Club mem­bers will be present as well to sell tick­ets to Santa’s Down­town Break­fast Dec. 8 at the First Pres­by­te­rian Church of Cov­ing­ton.

Mem­bers of the Cov­ing­ton Ro­tary Club will also be­gin pro­mot­ing drop-off boxes in dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions around the county for their an­nual Empty Stock­ing Fund.

Cov­ing­ton Ro­tary Ser­vice Project Co­or­di­na­tor Dar­rell Tan­ner said the Empty Stock­ing Fund has pro­vided toys to the county’s needy chil­dren for more than 50 years.

Tan­ner said this is the first year drop-boxes have col­lected the toys. Pre­vi­ously Cov­ing­ton Cable col­lected the toys for a waiver of a hook-up fee, but Tan­ner said Ro­tary has not es­tab­lished a deal with Char­ter Com­mu­ni­ca­tions which bought Cov­ing­ton Cable this sum­mer.

Do­na­tions should be dropped off by Dec. 7. Tan­ner said gifts should be un­wrapped toys be­tween $15 and $20, but no gift would be re­fused.

“We would ac­cept a col­or­ing book just as quickly as we would ac­cept a bi­cy­cle,” Tan­ner said.

Fam­i­lies can sign up to re­ceive toys by bring­ing a valid driv­ers li­cense or other proof of res­i­dence as well as a so­cial se­cu­rity card for each child they would like to re­ceive a gift to the Salva- tion Army on Wash­ing­ton St. be­tween 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. un­til Fri­day.

Peo­ple may also sign up to have a fruit bas­ket or gro­cery store gift card de­liv­ered to el­derly fam­ily mem­bers.

Those re­ceiv­ing gifts must re­side in New­ton County.

For more in­for­ma­tion about down­town hol­i­day events or to pur­chase a Lu­mi­nary of Hope, call Main Street Cov­ing­ton at (770) 385-2077.

Sub­mit­ted photo

Last year: Xavier Canady, left, smiles as team­mate Bri­anne Parker, cen­ter, throws a pail of glit­ter into the air as she and The New­ton County Spe­cial Olympic Eques­trian Team of­fi­cially wel­come the Christ­mas sea­son to Cov­ing­ton by light­ing the His­toric Court­house for the 2006 hol­i­day sea­son.

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