Annual tree lighting kicks off Natchez season

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 7, 2002

NATCHEZ &045; A tree Š a few strings of lights Š a tin star Š a chilly night. They’re not much on their own, but together, they create a Christmas gestalt.

And when the city Christmas tree was lit up Friday, no one could doubt that the yuletide season had begun.

&uot;It looks like Christmas,&uot; said 7-year-old Chaz Jackson as he admired the tree.

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Diane Landers, who braved the nippy evening with her two daughters, Sarah and Stacy, said watching the lighting of the tree is a longstanding tradition for her family.

&uot;I always watch it,&uot; she said. &uot;I think it’s really great.&uot;

Landers said the event also gives her a chance to see old friends.

&uot;It’s a nice gathering place,&uot; she said, adding that it was nice to walk around on a few blocks of Main and Commerce streets without worrying about oncoming traffic. &uot;It’s one the few times you can stand out in the street without getting in trouble.&uot;

This year’s tree, a 35-foot cedar, was donated by Natchezian Caroline Doughty. It was plucked from several trees she planted in her yard 25 years ago for use in her home.

Ferriday’s Christmas parade begins at 10 a.m. today, while Natchez will continue to celebrate the Christmas season from 5 to 9 p.m. today with the Victorian Christmas Candlelight Tour of Homes and Sunday with a community parade, which will begin at 3 p.m.