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Fri, Oct. 18

Christmas event planning kicks off

(Matt Hinshaw/The Daily Courier, file)

(Matt Hinshaw/The Daily Courier, file)

It always seems to sneak up on us, but it's time to start your plans for Christmas!

The Prescott Chamber of Commerce is involved in two events - the 32nd annual Christmas parade held 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 6, followed by the 60th annual Courthouse Christmas Lighting ceremony at 6 p.m. the same day.

The season officially kicks off the Saturday prior (Nov. 29) with the Electric Light Parade sponsored by the Prescott Downtown Partnership.

This year's Christmas parade will have the theme of "150 Years of Christmas Memories," in honor of the city's sesquicentennial year. Applications for parade entries will be available by mid-August and will be posted on the chamber's website. Completed applications, along with a $25 entry fee, must be received by the chamber no later than Friday, Nov. 14.

The Courthouse Lighting is a Christmas classic. For the 10th consecutive year, the chamber and PDP work together on planning the lighting, which showcases the courthouse building and plaza for a seven-week period. The brief ceremony leads to the first official time that the lights are illuminated. Children from throughout the community line the courthouse steps and sing Christmas carols as the Christmas story is read.

The lighting costs are paid for each year by the public and private sectors. All donations are paid to the Prescott Chamber Foundation, the 501(c)(3) charitable arm of the Prescott Chamber of Commerce. One hundred percent of funds collected through the foundation are spent on the costs involved in lighting the courthouse and plaza. In recent years, 100 trees have been lit - a far cry from the 25 to 30 trees that used to be partially lit!

Donations are accepted at any time throughout the year. Be sure to make your check payable to the Prescott Chamber Foundation and send them to the Chamber, 117 W. Goodwin St., Prescott, AZ 86303.

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