Warsaw holds candlelighting and parade

| November 27, 2017

The first candles were lit at the annual Warsaw Candlelighting held Nov. 26 at the gazebo in the village. A large crowd gathered for the candlelighting, parade and the chance to meet Santa. Jen Jones | Beacon

WARSAW – Warsaw Business Association sponsored the annual parade and candlelighting at the gazebo in Warsaw on Nov. 26. The weather made for a perfect evening for the crowd to enjoy the start of the Christmas season. The Lions Club provided the candles for the event.

The fifth and sixth grade Honor Choir, under the direction of Les Widder, provided the music to start the evening. The students sang a mixture of Christmas classics and newer songs to entertain everyone.

Reverend Phil Gibson shared the message for the night. He read from the Gospel of St. Luke and how the same closed-mindedness that kept Joseph and Mary from finding a room in an inn is what Jesus battled as an adult. Gibson urged everyone to open their minds and hearts to Jesus.

Tom Roahrig, president of the Warsaw Business Association, said the candlelighting and parade have been going on as long as he can remember. “Santa does a wonderful job every year. The kids are amazed that he often knows their names and their parents.”

Roahrig introduced Steve Kempf as the honorary candle lighter for the evening. “Steve does a lot of the community – both what people see and a lot behind the scenes.” Kempf said, “I want to thank everyone for coming and thank you for asking me to be the candle lighter for 2017.” After his candle was lit, he shared his light with others and soon, candle light surrounded the gazebo. The Honor Choir sang “Silent Night” and then everyone was asked to join in singing.

The loud blasts of the fire trucks pulled the crowd to the street to watch several fire trucks and other emergency vehicles cruise down Main Street. As they pulled into the fire department, Santa appeared and caught the attention of the children in the crowd.

Each child who visited Santa was given a treat bag and fruit after they shared what they wanted for Christmas with him. The desired gifts included iPhones, Xboxes, video games and a doll. Santa reminded the children to be good and be sure to leave him cookies on Christmas Eve.

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