Here’s the rundown of tree-lighting ceremonies for west Pierce County communities:
n DuPont, 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, Ross Plaza
The festivities begin when Candy Cane Lane opens at 4:30 p.m. Participating businesses on Wilmington Drive will open their doors to kids for a candy cane or other holiday treats. The lobby of the Community 1st Credit Union will open at 5 p.m. so holiday revelers can purchase menu selections from local DuPont restaurants for $5 per plate. There will be caroling and ornament making. DuPont Forza will host pictures with Santa for a fee.
n Fircrest, 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2, Alice Peers Park
Residents can enjoy caroling prior to the tree lighting. There will be entertainment and refreshments after the ceremony at the Roy H. Murphy Community Center, 555 Contra Costa Ave. Santa will be on hand so residents are encouraged to bring cameras for pictures.
n Fox Island, 6 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 2, Nichols Center
The festivities run until 9 p.m. and include music and entertainment.
n Gig Harbor, 5:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 1, Skansie Brothers Park
The annual event begins with live music by Rokkerbox at 5 p.m. and includes a live reindeer as well as a visit from Rhubarb, the Tacoma Rainiers mascot reindeer. Santa hats will be handed out to all the children, courtesy of CentryLink, and the Gig Harbor Historic Waterfront Association will provide free coffee, hot chocolate and cookies. Santa will be available at the park following the tree lighting to meet with each child to hear their holiday wishes.
n Lakewood, 4:45 p.m., Friday, Dec. 7, Lakewood City Hall
The festival before the tree lighting kicks off at 4 p.m. with a kiddie parade (children and those young at heart will assembled at 4:15 p.m. near the old GI Joe’s building across from City Hall), free children’s crafts, holiday music, refreshments and a visit with Santa. Visitors are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items for the Emergency Food Network.
The next morning at 9 a.m., the city will hold its first ever Jingle Bell Rock 5K run and walk at Lakewood City Hall. For more information or to register, click here or call 253-983-7827. The cost is $25 and includes chip timing and a long-sleeved T-shirt (for the first 200 participants). The after party features refreshments, music, crafts and activities for the kids.
n Steilacoom, 6:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 7, Steilacoom Town Hall
Following the tree-lighting ceremony, Santa will arrive with his elves for pictures. There will be a Christmas concert put on by Steilacoom High School students, craft projects and light refreshments.
n University Place, 6 p.m, Saturday, Dec. 1, Market Square (in front of the civic and library building)
Santa Paws kicks off the day in Windmill Village from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., followed by “Duck the Halls” caroling contest from 1 to 3 p.m. in Market Square, and school caroling from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Santa, who’s arriving promptly at 3 p.m., for fireside photos inside the atrium and there will be train rides, a bounce house, a silent auction and free cider and cookies. There will be activities for the kids, including gingerbread houses in the library, and musical performances from local schoolchildren and the 56th Army Band Holiday Brass.
Follow Christian Hill on Twitter @TNTchill