Downtown’s annual tree-lighting ceremony takes place despite rain


Sean Brown

The tree-lighting ceremony brightened up Main Street with a festive mood.

Sean Brown, Staff Writer

The Pleasanton tree-lighting ceremony is a time-honored event that kicks off the holiday season every December. This year, the tradition took place at the Museum on Main on December 3, bringing people together to celebrate.

“I think it’s a fun event that brings the community together. It’s always fun to see the tree floats and the beautiful tree lighting at the end of the night,” said Sarah Schafer, an employee at Pleasanton’s Museum on Main.

This year’s ceremony was unlike previous years due to excessive rain, which caused the annual Hometown Holiday parade to be canceled. Yet despite the weather,  event planners and Pleasanton residents carried on with the tree-lighting.

“It’s great that despite the bad weather, we still pushed through and lit up the tree. It’s a beautiful tradition I look forward to every year. The rain only showed us all how important this tradition is to all of us,” said Noreen Brown.

The tree-lighting tradition dates back to the early 1900s, when the town first began to celebrate Christmas as a community. At the time, the ceremony was much simpler, with a small tree being lit up in the town square.

“They recently got rid of the old tree and got a new tree planted. And so the orientation has changed from previous years. They haven’t been putting ornaments on because the tree is still too young,” said Schafer.

The tree has grown since last year, and with it, the number of Pleasanton residents participating in the event. The ceremony has remained a beloved tradition enjoyed by people of all ages around town.

“I think the tree lighting ceremony is important to all families and generations in Pleasanton. It’s a tradition that just keeps growing, and something I hope to show my future children,” said Kelly Brown.