A big thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate Lights Up! the holiday lighting event the evening of December 7. A great community event only happens with community involvement, and Piedmont really showed up, from the youngsters lined up in front of the tree to the young at heart who have been coming to this event for almost 60 years.
We should all be proud of the youth organizations that participated: the student-led Troubadours, who gave us all a beautiful musical performance including a sing-a-long; the Girl Scouts who helped with the interactive project “How do you shine your light”; the Boy Scouts weaving their way in and out of the crowd an hour after the ceremony to make sure everyone had some warm cider (generously donated by Dave Larson at Piedmont Grocery). We even had the a few elves from the Venture Crew to help Terri Ashton, who coordinated the ceremony this year, keep things running smoothly.
Thank you to Sari Kaplan for kicking off the event by singing and playing her guitar, followed by Mayor Teddy King who provided a rousing welcome and was our emcee for the evening.
I’d like to thank Chabad of Oakland for loaning the menorah and bringing warm and savory latkes. I heard one young man exclaim, “These are the real thing!” Also thank you to the Heafey Baum Group for the special hot chocolate, complete with whipped cream and holiday sprinkles. Thank you to Sophia Suciu, recipient of the Make-A-Wish Foundation for lighting the tree, menorah, and lights around the park. And we can’t forget Santa and his elf for making a special appearance.
Especially impressive, and deserving a special thank you, was the commitment of the Public Works and Recreation Departments and all employees of the city that came to make sure the event was special for everyone. And I wouldn’t want to forget to thank the members of the Piedmont Garden Club for helping with the lights on the tree. If you missed this wonderful Piedmont tradition, make sure you drive by the main park and see all the beautiful lights, and mark your calendar for next year — the first Wednesday in December!
Enjoy the holidays!
P.S. Watch your mail this week for our Holiday Greeting!