Community comes together for caroling

Published 12:01 am Monday, December 17, 2007

NATCHEZ — Between verses of “Frosty the Snowman,” parents bundled with kids and sweethearts embraced as the community came together for caroling in Memorial Park on Sunday night.

As candlelit faces sang a full repertoire of Christmas standards, the feeling of the season radiated through the air.

Christmas was practically palpable.

Email newsletter signup

The event’s coordinator, Kathy Sizemore, said she rallied the community 11 years ago because she missed the caroling she was used to seeing in New Orleans’ Jackson Square.

“It’s here for everyone to enjoy,” she said. “It just gets everyone in the spirit.”

And just a few songs into the sing along everyone looked to be in the spirit.

One by one the non-singers joined the singers and any residual grinchiness in the crowd just melted away.

Wearing matching Santa hats and sporting their own makeshift candleholders constructed from used two-liter bottles, Mary and Curtis Gibson personified the spirit behind the event.

“We’ve been coming here since the first year they had it,” Curtis said. “It’s wonderful; it’s Christmasy.”

That Christmasy feel was made even stronger by a cold snap that blew into Natchez on Saturday evening.

On Saturday afternoon it was 70 degrees.

On Sunday night it was in the 40s.

“The weather really helps the atmosphere,” Gibson said.

But its not just the weather that makes the event, Gibson said.

“Just to be here with the city and to be here with friends and family, that’s what this is about,” he said.

Jennifer Ross attended the event with her children and echoed Gibson’s holiday sentiments.

“This is about family,” she said. “Something like this really sets the mood for the whole week before Christmas, it gets you ready.”

Russ and her friends also liked the colder weather.

As Russ’ friend packed an armload of blankets and babies back to the car she shouted, “This is good caroling weather.”