Tree lighting a bright success

Santa ditched his traditional reindeer-powered transportation in favour of making a far grander entrance via helicopter sleigh at Governors Square’s annual Christmas Tree Lighting extravaganza last Saturday.

The mall was awash with young families who had flocked there to see Father Christmas, listen to carols sung by the combined St Ignatius School and Church Choirs, watch the impressive tree lighting in the square’s central car park and enjoy the holiday dance show performed by the instructors and students of The Dance Studio.

Well over 800 people attended the event, many of whom stood patiently in line to have their photo taken with Santa and to tell him what they wanted for Christmas this year. Santa handed out small presents to all the children who sought his lap and his ear, and he didn’t seem to be bothered by the heat despite being decked out in his traditional fur-trimmed red coat, trousers, cap and black boots.

The event’s organisers put a lot of effort into making the event memorable and included plenty of free activities: two bouncy castles, covered kids’ craft tables where youngsters could make their own Christmas ornaments, an inflatable slide and a face-painting booth.

Eggnog, appetisers and popcorn where also in plentiful supply, adding to the festive cheer.

Many attendees entered into the free raffle for a chance to win the sackfuls of impressive prizes, and one of Santa’s elves, Lisa Uggeri, announced a fresh draw every 10 minutes. Prizes, donated by many of the Govenors Square merchants, included 150 square feet of Cayman Walnut prefinished engineered flooring from Stafford Flooring, a tournament-size domino set from The Hobby Shop, two bottles of Veuve Cliquot champagne from West Indies Brokers, a $100 gift certificate from Cost U Less and a 7-foot live Christmas tree from Governors Square.

On behalf of the organisers, Ms Uggeri said, “We were thrilled to see so many here enjoying the holiday festivities. A special thanks to our wonderful tenants and all of those who participated to make this event a huge success.”

The third annual Governors Square tree lighting was also attended by both the Cayman Islands Humane Society and Cayman Animal Rescue. Both organisations brought along rescue animals for the crowds to see and gave out pet gifts and calendars. Monies raised by the two animal welfare groups will go toward assisting animals in need locally.

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