Talk about serendipity! I casually decided to take a detour down Main Street this afternoon and found there was only an hour left before the Huntington Beach Second Annual Christmas Tree Lighting.
Of course I stayed and waited, and it was worth it. The Marina High School Vocal Arts group (or choir?) sang several carols, mostly traditional, and encouraged the crowd to sing along. The choir was good. Audience participation was a bit sparse, though "Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer" got a good response. I especially enjoyed the choir's rendition of "Carol of the Bells" (Which I did not sing) and "Joy to the World" (which I did). I especially liked the fact that they sang all the verses to the different songs. Most songs were meant to be sung in their entirety, and few people trouble to.
Singing or not, everyone seemed to be having a good time and there were plenty of takers for the free cookies and cocoa as well as a high demand for the popcorn the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory was giving for a donation to the Huntington Beach Youth Shelter.
After the choir sang for close to an hour, Santa came and helped the mayor light the tree which then played music for the audience, synchronizing its lights with the music. Santa stayed to one side to meet the children, then, while Aloha Radio played.
It was definitely an event worth waiting for, and I hope there are many more annual Christmas Tree Lightings in the city's future.