MASON — It was a first in many years Thursday evening when the Town of Mason held a tree lighting ceremony in front of the town hall.
An annual event decades ago, Mason officials decided to resurrect the tradition this year.
The 15-foot Frazier Fir tree was donated by the Barnitz family, owners of Bob’s Market and Greenhouses, Inc. of Mason. Family patriarch Bob Barnitz threw the ceremonial switch to light the tree.
Mayor Donna Dennis welcomed those attending and thanked the Barnitz family for offering the tree. Barnitz said it was fortunate the business had a tree of that size on hand upon learning of the town’s intentions to hold the ceremony, and noted the tree’s original destination was the market’s Pittsburgh location.
Also recognized at the ceremony were the town employees who erected and decorated the tree with lights, and the office workers who planned the event and served refreshments.
Members of the Sassafras 4-H Club and Sassy Kids Cloverbuds sang Christmas carols prior to the tree lighting. Popcorn and hot chocolate were served at the conclusion.
The town will be bringing another old tradition back this year, it was decided at a later council meeting, when it holds a Christmas lighting contest.
Only those entering will be judged. Entry may be completed by calling the town hall at 304-773-5200 or stopping by, and giving your name and address prior to the Dec. 18 deadline. The contest is open only to those living in the municipal limits.
Judging will take place on Dec. 21 between the hours of 6 and 8 p.m. Winners will be awarded cash prizes on Tuesday, Dec. 22, at the top three winners’ homes, according to Mayor Dennis.
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing and lives in Mason County.