Naugatuck, Prospect, and Beacon Falls will kick the holiday season into gear over the next few days with an array of festivities.
This year’s tree lighting festivities will be extra bright as downtown businesses decorate their storefronts for the holidays. The Naugatuck Parks and Recreation Commission is hoping to reignite some friendly competition in a decorating contest to spotlight local businesses.
“We figured if we can get people to decorate going down through town, it will be even nicer,” said Parks and Recreation Commission Chair Pat Wagner.
The party on the Town Green will kick off at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 5 with free refreshments, a bonfire, and chestnuts for sale, with Santa and his pals Frosty and Rudolf arriving by fire engine at 6:30 p.m.
Horse-drawn carriages will take riders through downtown to the Naugatuck Savings Bank, where the United Way of Naugatuck and Beacon Falls will hold its annual Festival of Trees.
Naugatuck residents and commissioners can also take a stroll downtown and vote for the best-decorated business.
Any business that wishes to participate can call the Parks and Recreation office at (203) 720-7043 to sign up.
The commission hopes to spread the holiday cheer a little further this year. It is partnering with Dolly Lengyl of the hair salon Personal to raise funds for Naugatuck’s local military unit stationed on Rubber Avenue.
They hope to raise enough money to buy a personal care kit for each member of the 142nd Medical Unit of the Connecticut Army National Guard, which was recently deployed to Afghanistan.
Wagner said some businesses have already donated money to the cause.
There will be a tent and Humvee at the tree lighting ceremony to encourage donations. The kits cost $15 each.
As part of the festivities, the borough will also be sponsoring a military tree.
A tree on the gazebo will be dedicated to members of military. Anyone can come down on Monday and hang an ornament on the tree to honor service men and women.
The 9th Annual Holiday Light Parade will kick off on the Town Green at 5 p.m. Dec. 4. Decorated vehicles will wind down to Town Hall, along Waterbury Road, Old School House Road, and Route 68 before heading back to the town center.
The tree lighting ceremony will follow at 6 p.m. with everyone invited back to the fire house for refreshments and awards in categories including vehicle with the most lights, best dump truck, best decorated Christmas scene, and best decorated trailer.
The Son Birds from the Senior Center will lead a carol sing.
Anyone who wishes to participate in the parade should show up at 4:30 p.m. No registration is required.
“It’s very imaginative, very unique floats and it’s just something different,” Prospect Mayor Robert Chatfield said.
Beacon Hose Company No. 1 will host a tree lighting ceremony Dec. 3 beginning at 6 p.m.
Caroling will begin at Town Hall at Town Hall Maple Avenue and proceed to St. Michael’s Church and Beacon Falls Congregational Church. After the Christmas lights are illuminated, the celebration will continue at the Tracey Lewis House on Wolfe Avenue, where there will be a bon fire and free hay rides. Free hot chocolate, hot cider and hot dogs will be served.