Tree lighting becomes end-of-semester tradition at WU

It happens around this time every year. Toys in every store, a pair of hopalong boots, a toy pistol that shoots blanks and a lit up tree outside of Roberts Chapel. Student Senate hosted the annual Christmas Tree lighting Nov. 27. There was hot chocolate, singing and even the man himself showed up in his red suit. 

Waynesburg University’s President Douglas Lee was also in attendance of the annual tree lighting, helping sing along to carols and taking in the scene of students spending time together. 

“I just love the atmosphere and the enthusiasm of the students singing the Christmas carols, just a great fellowship moment that we have here together,” Lee said. 

Although Lee has been to many Christmas tree lightings, they never cease to amaze him as he believes every year was better than the last. 

“I think it gets better every year,” Lee said. “I mean this year we were blessed with snow which made a special atmosphere and a special moment.” 

The planning for the annual tree lighting starts weeks before to ensure everything can go smoothly, but often the planning comes natural. Student Senate President Tyler McCoy, said this event to happen each year, so putting it together is quite simple. 

“We have pretty much been planning this since harvest fest,” McCoy said. “As tradition it comes together pretty easily because people are expecting it, the choir they expect us to reach out to them. Eddie [Powers] is always Santa Clause so it works out really well and comes together really easily.” 

Throughout the night, music was played, including at the end of the night when the piano player stopped playing and the crowd became the instrument. The singing of ‘Silent Night’ concluded the night as people began taking pictures with jolly ole’ Saint Nick and the newly lit Christmas tree. 

Thomas Faye, junior youth ministry major, has been to every tree lighting since coming to Waynesburg. He still loves coming out every year to take part in this annual tradition of the lighting and singing along with fellow students. 

“I enjoy the tree lighting like every year and love singing Christmas Carols,” said Faye, “Everyone getting together to enjoy the festivities even though it’s not Christmas yet.” 

For both President Lee and McCoy, this time of year always bring great tidings for all to enjoy as the Christmas season approaches. 

“It’s always a fun time to have everyone sing together sing fun Christmas songs also the traditional carols and that’s a great time,” McCoy said, “of course lighting up the campus is a highlight but singing is also a highlight.”