Join family and friends at 5:00pm on Sunday, December 6th, for the annual Lighting of the Boca Grande Community Christmas Tree. Sponsored by the Boca Grande Woman’s Club, the event is held across the street from Hudson’s Grocery. This ceremony dates back to 1954, when the Woman’s Club first planted the tree on this site.
In keeping with CDC guidelines for safe gatherings, the 2020 ceremony will be somewhat different than in previous years. Everyone attending should wear masks and maintain a safe distance from those not in your own family. Instead of group caroling, the event will feature a solo performance of “O Holy Night,” by Julia Pierce. Rather than setting out open trays of cookies, Woman’s Club volunteers will pass out bags of Christmas candy.
Despite those changes necessitated by Covid-19 protocol, some Tree Lighting traditions will remain the same. Members of the Boca Grande Clergy will offer readings and the timeless message of Christmas. Children from The Island School will participate in a live nativity scene.
Each year the BGWC designates an organization or individual to serve as Honorary Tree Lighter for the ceremony. This year the Woman’s Club has chosen four individuals to honor as our “Heroes of the Pandemic” for their extraordinary efforts in helping Boca Grande stay safe and active during the Covid-19 crisis. The 2020 Honorary Tree Lighters will be Dr. Lauren Hana, Mary O’Bannon, Jean Thompson and Joe Wier.
Dr. Hana, Medical Director of the Boca Grande Health Clinic, has been working throughout the pandemic to keep our community healthy and safe, including initiating the Boca Grande pledge for all residents and businesses. Mary O’Bannon chaired the task force of the BGWC Emergency Relief Fund, which provided critical financial assistance to local workers and businesses. Jean Thompson, Director of the Island School, was able to set up a virtual educational experience for students last spring and then planned and executed safe in-person classes for students this fall. Joe Wier, of the Lee County Parks and Recreation Department, has worked tirelessly to enable campers to have programs over the summer and to accommodate all of the groups that use the Community Center throughout the year. The Boca Grande Woman’s Club wishes to recognize the contributions all of these individuals have made to our community by naming them our Honorary Tree Lighters!
Come and take part in this festive start to the Christmas season!