Gardiner kicks off the holiday season Friday, December 6

Last year’s tree lighting in Gardiner. Pictured (L-R): Jodi Lundi, Linda Egan and Marlene Magnanini. (Photo by Lauren Thomas)

Each year, Gardinerites gather outside Town Hall for a Tree-Lighting Ceremony, preceded by a parade through the hamlet with a fire engine blaring carols over a loudspeaker and a performance by the students of Take the Leap Dance Company upon arrival. This year, event sponsorships by Tantillo’s Farm Market and the Walden Savings Bank are making it possible for Santa and Mrs. Claus to lead the parade in a horse-drawn wagon. And Majestic’s Hardware will host a free photobooth at the town hall, 2340 State Route 44/55.

Marchers will assemble at 7 p.m. this Friday evening, December 6 at Gardiner Gables, where kids can pick up free glow-sticks to wave as they walk along. The parade route has been extended slightly this year, with the turnaround point at the Gardiner Animal Hospital’s parking lot instead of the Reformed Church. Back at Town Hall, dancers will cavort and the tree will be officially lit. This year the Gardiner Day Committee is dedicating the tree-lighting to the town’s Highway Department, in gratitude for its employees’ assistance in hanging Christmas lights and decorations throughout the hamlet in time for the event.


Afterwards, kids can take their Christmas wishes to Santa as he holds court on the bench in front of Town Hall, while baked treats and hot cocoa are offered inside the building. Voluntary cash donations will be requested to help support this and other Gardiner Day events throughout the year, and donations of baked goods are also welcomed. There will be a collection box for new, unwrapped gifts for the Toys for Tots charitable program.

Attendees are encouraged to bring a flashlight. To learn more, visit