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Williamstown lights up for holiday

Williamstown Santa: Santa Claus prepares to hop on the trailer and ride around Williamstown to say hello to children and their families in preparation for Christmas. (Photo Provided)

Williamstown celebrated the spirit of the holidays and gave back with its first Light Up The Town socially-distanced celebration on Thursday.

Santa, his elves and even the Grinch rode around town in an escort led by the fire and police departments to wave to residents and encourage joy amidst the pandemic.

Residents were encouraged to turn on their holiday and porch lights to take part in the event and donations were accepted for the Williamstown Food Pantry.

Registered houses, churches and businesses also were judged for the Light Up The Town light decoration contest directed by Mayor Paul Jordan.

“I was so excited and we are very fortunate in this community,” Jordan said.

Light Up The Night was held in lieu of the annual Christmas parade, which was canceled due to coronavirus concerns.

“This year has been tough on so many people,” Jordan said. “We really wanted to honor the community.”

The event extended past Williamstown and was aided with the assistance of another area community.

“The city of Vienna came up and helped the area (with emergency services) while the fire trucks were held up,” Jordan said.

The event also honored and remembered former Councilman Jim Parker, who passed away in November from complications due to the coronavirus.

“He loved the Christmas parade,” Jordan said. “We also wanted to make sure to do something to honor him.”

Jordan hopes to grow the event next year and he was thrilled with the community involvement and reception.

“Everybody involved was able to get to every street so Santa could wave to all the kids and all the households,” Jordan said.

In terms of pantry donations, Jordan was excited about the amount collected.

“I was absolutely blown away,” Jordan said. “We filled up an entire 30 by 40 foot room with all the boxes of donations.”

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