Palmerton residents can expect the holiday season to arrive a little early this year.
That's because a Christmas in the Park event will be held from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, in the borough park.
The event will be hosted by the Palmerton Holiday Lighting Committee, which plans to decorate the park with new lights in time for Christmas.
Committee member Michele O' Neil said the goal of the event "is to have families, businesses, and various organizations sponsor live Christmas trees in the park."
O'Neill said the trees will line the walkways of the park and will be lit and decorated by the sponsor. Each tree will be unique and will have the sponsor noted on a plaque by their tree, said O'Neil, who added the trees will remain up through the holiday season for all to come and enjoy. "Christmas in the Park will be the kick off of the holiday season with the lighting of the new park lights and the Christmas trees,"O'Neil said. "We will be coordinating with Santa visiting the park, along with various groups providing holiday music, and we also hope to have some local vendors selling holiday goodies."
More information as to whom will provide entertainment and the vendors is to come, she said.
Earlier this month, the committee received several more contributions during a gathering at First Northern Bank & Trust, Palmerton.
Those donations included $1,000 from the Carbon Chamber & Economic Development Corporation; $1,008 from First Northern Bank & Trust, Palmerton; and $352 from First Northern Bank & Trust, Gilbert.
Last month, the committee ordered 29 silhouette snowflake lights, as well as colored string lights, that will appear around the park along Third Street, Fourth Street, and Lafayette Avenue in time for Christmas.
In June, the committee sent out a donation form to households, businesses, and organizations within the Palmerton area to solicit community support to help underwrite the cost to purchase new decorations for the borough park in time for Christmas.
Mailings were made to Aquashicola, Bowmanstown, Kunkletown, Lehighton, and Palmerton area homes all within the Palmerton Area School District.
About 1,800 people were expected to get their solicitation as part of their quarterly sewage and water bill from the borough, at which time the committee will make additional donation forms available at the three banks in town, the Palmerton Area Library, and the Palmerton Memorial Pool.
Anyone who would like to contribute may mail their donations to Holiday Lighting Committee, 410 Delaware Ave. Palmerton, Pa. 18071. Those who send in a donation will receive a thank-you letter.
The lights around the park along Delaware Avenue are expected to be ready by Christmas of 2014.
At a Palmerton Chamber luncheon in March, Joe Federanich, committee chairman, said the borough would like to have new Christmas decorations throughout its downtown by 2014. The town committee was formed to pick the decorations, and help raise money to afford them.
Palmerton Area Chamber of Commerce president Peter Kern previously noted that the original decorations were put up in the 1990s, and refurbished about 10 years ago.
The next meeting of the Palmerton Holiday Lighting Committee will be held at 6 p.m. in the Palmerton Borough Hall.