Christ­mas tree lights up

Waikato News - - Front Page - Gary Far­row

Hamil­ton’s fa­mous Christ­mas Tree will be in­stalled in Gar­den Place for the ninth year run­ning this De­cem­ber— and it will be re­splen­dent with new lights.

“We’re ex­cited to be turn­ing on a brand new light­ing sys­tem, not seen in New Zealand be­fore,” said Hamil­ton Christ­mas Char­i­ta­ble Trust chair­per­son Si­mon Scott.

The tree’s orig­i­nal light­ing had its el­e­ments re­placed for the past three to four years, with com­pa­nies InDe­serve re­spon­si­ble for the light­ing, and A-Z Rig­ging build­ing the tree.

But last year the trust de­cided to re­place all the light­ing with more up-to­date and ro­bust hard­ware, at a cost of $130,000.

“We are very thank­ful to the Grass­roots Trust and Glenice and John Gal­lagher Foun­da­tion for fund­ing the new lights,” said Scott.

The sys­tem is com­puter con­trolled, al­low­ing the op­er­a­tors to change it be­tween a va­ri­ety of flash­ing themes, cast­ing images, video ef­fects, lo­gos, text and ef­fects, as well as hav­ing the abil­ity to syn­chro­nise the lights with live mu­sic and sounds.

As it is the first year of us­ing the tech­nol­ogy, the trust has de­cided to keep things sim­ple, us­ing one pat­tern this year and then chang­ing it in 2018, in­tro­duc­ing new el­e­ments each year.

The tree lights will be switched on for the first time on De­cem­ber 3, with mayor An­drew King, Si­mon Scott and a child do­ing the honours.

A con­cert fea­tur­ing a brass band, gospel choir and var­i­ous Christ­mas singers will start at 7.30pm, and play un­til the lights are switched on at 9pm.

Shirley Mur­phy from InDe­serve (left) and Hamil­ton Christ­mas Char­i­ta­ble Trust chair Si­mon Scott with the new lights.

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