With glad tidings and holiday cheer, Supervisor Anthony J. Santino and members of the Town Board along with the Hempstead Town family kicked off the holiday season today with the annual lighting of the Christmas Tree, Hanukkah Menorah and Kwanzaa Kinara. The ceremony also featured bundles of toys collected for economically disadvantaged children.
Gracing the town with his presence was a very special visitor from the North Pole known for his presents. Although he left his sleigh and reindeer with the Mrs., Santa Claus was riding in style atop a 1951 Ahrens Fox Fire Truck driven and maintained by the Baldwin Fire Department. His entrance was hailed by a chorus of singers from Jackson Main Elementary School. Joining in with the holiday entertainment was Oneg Shemesh and Peter Rapanaro.
“Though it may be a hectic time of year, the holiday season gives us the opportunity to show our loved ones how much we care,” said Santino. “There’s no better home for the holidays than Hempstead Town.”
Hempstead Town officials have symbolized the spirit of giving by partnering with CSEA Local 880 and the Salvation Army to sponsor its annual Angel Tree Donation drive in an effort to help economically disadvantaged children during the holidays. Toys were collected by the town’s Department of Highways and attendees of the ceremony had an opportunity to donate an unwrapped toy to the cause. The Angel Tree Drive will continue to accept donations up until December 12th.
Hempstead Town’s Animal Shelter joined in on the festivities along with a few of their furry friends. The cheery pups and cats enjoyed a meet-and-greet with many merrymakers and brought the kind of holiday joy only found in man’s best friend.
“I’d like to thank the Jackson Main Elementary School chorus and our special guests Oneg Shemesh and Peter Rapanaro for making our holiday extra special,” concluded Santino. “I’d also like to thank my good friend Santa Claus for taking the time out of his busy schedule to be here and celebrate with us. I wish everyone a happy, healthy holiday season filled with love and joy.”