Up & Coming Weekly

November 30, 2021

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

Issue link: http://www.epageflip.net/i/1433510

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Page 16 of 24

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM 16 UCW NOVEMBER -28, 2021 Fort Bragg soldiers prepare for Christmas season by HANNAH LEE Annual Christmas Tree Lighting e annual Christmas Tree Light- ing will help kick off the Christmas season on Fort Bragg. In addition to the Christmas tree lighting, the Family of the Year will be announced at the new Family of the Year celebration. Fort Bragg will be kicking off the Christmas Tree Lighting and all of the activities that come with it after the Family of e Year celebration. Each year, Fort Bragg's Army Com- munity Service accepts applications for the Family of the Year which honors soldiers and families that have provided exceptional service throughout the year. is year 21 ap- plications were received. e tree lighting will have an aerial demonstration by the Golden Knights, a visit from Santa, holiday entertainment by the 82nd Airborne Division Band and Chorus and of course holiday lights and inflatable displays. Cookie decorating and a trackless train are two of many activities that will be available to the children attending the event. e Christmas tree for this year's Christmas Tree Lighting celebra- tion arrived at the Main Post Parade Field last week. e tree came from Mistletoe Meadows Farm, located in the Blue Ridge Mountains. e tree is a 24-foot Fraser Fir. "We are very excited to see every- one for this year's in-person event," eresa Smith, Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, said. "e holidays are such a special time for everyone and we love being able to kick off the season with this event." e Christmas Tree Lighting and Family of the Year celebration will take place on Dec. 3 from 4 to 8 p.m. Santa will make his appearance around 5:30 p.m. Food and drinks will be available for sale as well. e event will take place at the Main Post Parade Field. Trees for Troops Service members can get a real and free Christmas tree this year at the annual Trees for Troops event. e program is for Active Duty families who are E-6 and below, and for Reservists on Active Orders. 450 trees are available on a first- come, first-serve basis. In order to get a tree, a voucher will need to be picked up at the Fort Bragg Leisure Travel Services. ey will be available through Dec. 3 or until they are all gone. Pick-up will be on Dec. 3 from 8 to 10 a.m. at the Smith Lake Recre- ation Area. To pick up the tree, the recipient needs to bring both the voucher and their DoD ID Card. ose who did not get a chance to pick up a voucher can try and pick up a tree. If there are any trees leftover, they will be given out first- come, first-serve to service mem- bers who are E-6 and below. "Not only are service members re- ceiving a free, real tree for the holi- days; it's a chance to bring cheer to those who may not be able to go home for the holidays," said Staff Sgt. Jakoby Mallory, President of the Fort Bragg Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers. "e abundance of support from volunteers from around the com- munity also shows service members the family they have here, at Fort Bragg." Over the past 16 years, the Christ- mas Spirit Foundation has delivered a total of 262,265 real Christmas trees throughout the country for service members and their families. Trees for Troops is a nationwide program that delivers trees to 75 dif- ferent military bases and installations. HANNAH LEE, Assistant Editor. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomin- gweekly.com. 910-484-6200. EVENTS Fort Bragg family members collect trees at Smith Lake Recreation Area as part of the annual Trees for Troops tree giveaway. (Photo courtesy of Fort Bragg Command Information.) Holiday Lights in the Garden set to open for eleventh year by ELAINA J. MARTIN e holidays are upon us and the Cape Fear Botanical Garden will be bringing in crowds with Holiday Lights in the Garden. is is the eleventh year that the event has been held. "We started preparing in July … staff members have been working out in the Garden one to two days a week to prepare for BOO-tanical and Holiday Lights," said Meghan Woolbright, marketing coordina- tor, Cape Fear Botanical Garden. Holiday Lights in the Garden include more than one million lights displayed throughout the botanical gardens. More than simply walking through the lights, there are activities for everyone. Cape Fear Botanical Garden's glowing light maze is constructed with cool white lights. "Our team hit the ground run- ning with the light maze con- struction and it was a huge hit for BOO-tanical [event] this year and we're sure it will be for Holiday Lights as well. It'll be like your own winter wonderland," Wool- bright said. Santa will also be on the scene ready to hear requests from chil- dren. Joining Santa, the Grinch will also be found among the lights. Visitors may purchase photos with Santa, but selfies with the Grinch are free. Visitors are invited to enjoy dinner and snacks from local food trucks to include Howell N' Dawgs, Hollywood Java, House- hold 6 Catering, and Gloria's. Visitors can also warm themselves with hot cocoa and s'mores. Entertainment will be sched- uled on select evenings and free crafts for children will be pro- vided. ere will be live entertainment including the Fayetteville Techni- cal Community College Jazz-Or- chestra Ensemble, Highland Brass Players from Snyder Memorial Baptist Church, Fayetteville Jazz Orchestra, Gilbert eater GLEE, Berean Baptist Choir, and Cham- pion Davis Saint – Amand. If visitors have last-minute Christmas shopping they can check items off their list in the Garden Gift Shop, which will be open each evening. Parking will be free but it is lim- ited. On Dec. 17 and 18, Holiday Lights visitors can park downtown and ride the Can-Do Coldwell Banker Trolley to the Cape Fear Botanical Gardens; tickets to ride will be $5 and can be purchased on Eventbrite. e trolley will be picking up and dropping off between Cool Springs Downtown District office and Cape Fear Botanical Garden every 20 minutes. A Member Preview Night is scheduled for Dec. 2, which will be free to all Cape Fear Botani- cal Garden members and they can welcome one guest at normal admission price. Members can pay for guest tickets at the Garden Gift Shop. For more information or to pur- chase tickets visit https://www. capefearbg.org/event/holiday- lights-in-the-garden-2/. Santa waves to visitors at Cape Fear Botanical Gardens Holiday Lights in the Gardens event. (Photo courtesy of Cape Fear Botanical Gardens.) ELAINA J. MARTIN, Staff Writer. COMMENTS? editor@upandcomingweekly. com. 910-484-6200.

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