Tune in: City of Cullman Christmas tree lighting tonight

The City of Cullman’s tree lighting ceremony is normally held at Depot Park with thousands of spectators. This year, due to COVID-19, the event will be virtual and streamed online at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4, 2020. (Cullman Tribune file photo)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The City of Cullman recently canceled its annual Christmas parade and Christmas tree lighting extravaganza, but the lighting will go on in virtual form tonight at 7 p.m., streamed on the websites of Cullman Parks, Recreation and Sports Tourism (CPRST) and The Cullman Tribune, and shared on The Tribune’s and CPRST’s Facebook pages.

CPRST Executive Director Zac Wood said, “2020 looks a little different, but we’re really excited to be able to bring the community together with a virtual tree lighting of Cullman’s beautiful tree. We want to invite everyone to tune into this really special broadcast that we know you’ll be proud of.”

“We’ll be kicking off the holiday season with a virtual tree-lighting extravaganza,” the department said in a media release. “In-person events for Christmas in Cullman were unfortunately canceled in an abundance of caution, but we are fortunate to be able to bring a virtual experience to the community. Unlike a typical tree-lighting ceremony, this year’s production will feature a full story that you’ll have to tune in to the online broadcast to see. In the production, we’ll be traveling all over Cullman to try and keep our Christmas spirit alive, and we’ll end with a live tree lighting at Depot Park.

“All week long, we’ve been asking for kids and families to send in their Christmas wishes on social media or in our special red mailbox at Festhalle, and Santa will be granting one child’s wish live during the ceremony! You’ll want to tune in to see if yours is granted!

“The broadcast will take place at 7pm at ChristmasInCullman.com or on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/ChristmasInCullman, and we’re hoping that everyone helps spread Christmas cheer on their own through social media by using the hashtag #ChristmasInCullman.

“While Depot Park will be open and the tree will be lit, the way to get the full tree-lighting experience this year will be to tune in live at 7 p.m. for the virtual ceremony.”

CPRST Marketing Coordinator Jasef Wisener said, “During the event, we want to see the ways that our community is helping to spread Christmas cheer in their own ways! Whether it’s posting a picture of your favorite ornament, sharing a photo of who you’re watching the tree-lighting with, showing off the decorations at your house or anything else that celebrates the spirit of Christmas, we want to see it! All you have to do is use the hashtag #ChristmasInCullman, and your photos may be featured during the production!”

CPRST Recreational Development Director Christy Turner said, “This holiday season is definitely a different one for all of us! We believe that this tree lighting can be a fun time for the entire community to enjoy. We hope that you can join us as we light our Christmas tree and celebrate the magic of the season while we reflect on our many blessings.”

Pop-up shopping Saturday

In its statement, CPRST also reported, “We’re also excited to be bringing a few Christmas Pop-Up Shops to the Cullman Wellness & Aquatic Center on select Saturdays in December beginning with Initial Impression on Saturday, Dec. 5 from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m.”

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W.C. Mann