PAWLING KICKS OFF DECEMBERFEST WITH TREE LIGHTING EVENT

Decemberfest was recently celebrated with bright lights, hot soup and warm hats and gloves in Pawling.

Staff from The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Pawling Rehabilitation and Nursing served more than 450 bowls of hot chicken noodle soup and bacon cheeseburger soup while donating winter hats and gloves to all attendees Dec. 2 during Pawling Chamber of Commerce’s annual December tree-lighting festivities, according to a written release.

The full day and evening of activities for local residents culminated in the arrival of Santa Claus and a ceremony for the illumination of the tree was held at the apron of the Pawling Chamber of Commerce Building and Welcome Center. The tree-lighting is one of the highlights of the Pawling Chamber’s calendar year and kicks off the month-long celebration known as Decemberfest, according to the release.

“As the weather gets a bit colder, we want to ensure that all Pawling residents feel a bit warmer – both inside and out – especially as they patiently wait with joyful expectations for the lighting of the Pawling tree and the arrival of Santa Claus,” Dan Muskin, regional administrator of The Grand Healthcare System, operators of The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Pawling Rehabilitation and Nursing, said in the release. “Decemberfest is a time when all of Pawling comes together to celebrate the holidays and the community as a whole.”

Santa Claus distributed gifts to children, and Chamber members donated and served cookies, hot dogs and hot chocolate. Approximately 50 students from Trinity Pawling School’s Trinitones and Pawling Central School also serenaded guests with a medley of carols before the tree lighting ceremony.

“Pawling’s Decemberfest and Tree Lighting event brings families and friends together to kick off the holiday season,” Peter Cris, president of the Pawling Chamber of Commerce, said in the release. “The warmth and friendliness of this special community are on full display at the tree lighting. We invite everyone to shop local during this holiday season and throughout the year, and we’re very thankful of our merchants’ support.”

The tree lighting event is made possible with the help of volunteers from the December Tree Lighting Committee, Pawling schools and local businesses. Throughout the month, businesses hold sales, offer special events and demonstrations within the village. The Tree Lighting ceremony, which began 20 years ago, is supported by the Chamber and individual donations from the community.

Also in attendance at the tree lighting were numerous local officials including: Pawling Mayor Robert Liffland, Pawling Town Supervisor David P. Kelly, state Sen. Terrence Murphy, Dutchess County Legislator John Thomes, Duchess County Clerk Bradford Kendall and Dutchess County Sheriff Butch Anderson.

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