Photos from White Christmas

5 Dec

Yesterday the Village of Webster hosted a White Christmas celebration like never before.

Faced with the multiple COVID-related challenges that caused last year’s White Christmas in the Village to be canceled entirely, this year the Business Improvement District partnered with the PTSA to bring the entire celebration outdoors to Gazebo Park.

Over several hours Saturday morning, a few dozen busy elves from the Webster BID, Webster PTSA and Webster Village transformed the park into an incredibly beautiful Santa’s Wonderland, which was great during the day but even more spectacular after sunset. When visitors arrived, they could enter through a light tunnel, walk down Candy Cane Lane to see Santa, then along Peppermint Lane to decorate a Christmas cookie, make a craft at the Toy Shop, and warm up with some hot cocoa. Even more volunteers arrived as the festivities began, assuring that everything ran very smoothly. I saw a lot of high school kids in Santa hats and elf hats — thanks to them for all their help.

The event officially began at 3 p.m., and it wasn’t long before the line to see Santa stretched all the way from the gazebo to the back of the park. The jolly old elf was definitely the biggest draw of the afternoon, but there was plenty more to do and see. Aside from the cookie, craft and hot chocolate tables, BID chairperson Elena Bernardi had lined up a whole afternoon of entertainment, including carolers in the park and on Main Street, and storytime with Jason Poole from the Webster Public Library.

Perhaps it was because most everything was concentrated in one place, but it seemed to me that there was a lot more participation in White Christmas this year than in years past. I think the BID definitely hit on a winning strategy this year, and I hope that at least some of its elements return every year — like Santa at the gazebo. That worked exceptionally well.

The only drawback I found to having everything in Gazebo Park was that many of our small businesses on Main Street didn’t benefit from the crowds of people walking past their doors. At one point in the evening, Rochester Rhapsody was caroling on Main Street, but it would be nice to see more activities up there next year to draw shoppers up to the four corners.

And then of course, there was the parade. As usual, it was a crowd-pleaser, and the reasonable temperatures helped make it a comfortable experience.

Thank you to everyone who made White Christmas and the Light Parade possible. It’s definitely my favorite day of the Village year.

Click here to see my usual gallery of photos, which begin with set-up in the morning. I’ve added some taken by my daughter, who was running around with me last night as my helper elf.

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One Response to “Photos from White Christmas”

  1. Jin Lockwood December 5, 2021 at 4:01 pm #

    Excellent event! Everything at Marmoreal Park was well organized large crowd. Of Course Santa & Mrs. Claus were a big hit. Lines were long but moved along smoothly. Late afternoon was quite cool and breezy but everyone looked bundled up. The parade was very exciting,the vehicles were well decorated. The parade seemed shorter this year but the turnout was great.

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