Thanksgiving is nearly here and that means our city’s utility workers are busy dressing up WaKeeney to get ready for the 65th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony!
The installation of the tree and its avenue of lights is a big process but every year it turns our little town into the Christmas City of the High Plains. As a point of pride for our town, these decorations have been on display every year since 1950 when they were first designed and created by former town leaders, Jake Heckman and Art Keraus. Throughout the decades hundreds of local volunteers have pitched in to keep the Christmas sparkle in the 6,800 colored lights and 1100 yards of garlands with fresh paint and repairs made to the bells, wreaths, and stars before they go up along the four square block area of downtown WaKeeney.
As a kid growing up in WaKeeney I remember the anticipation that went along with watching the days long installation process of our 35-foot Christmas tree. It was the official start to theseason for me and watching the linemen and city workers stringing those lights each year made me think of the elves working so hard in Santa’s workshop to get all the kid’s presents ready for his big trip around the world.
WaKeeney’s Christmas display is known as the largest between Kansas City and Denver and this year the Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony will be celebrating its 65th anniversary with a live nativity scene, caroling, horse-drawn wagon rides and hot cocoa and treats for children of all ages. Please join us in Downtown Wakeeney on Saturday, November 28 at 6pm. There’ll be activities for the whole family and you can kick start your Christmas shopping at many of our local businesses. And you can bet Santa and Mrs. Claus will be making an appearance in the Christmas City of the High Plains, WaKeeney, Kansas.