The annual lighting of the Christmas tree in Frank Fetch Park, one of the most time-honored traditions in German Village, will be at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6.
"It's one of the most social things," said Jerry Glick, a member of Friends of Frank Fetch Park and the German Village Garten Club, both of which tend to the park.
Residents pack the park to mingle, nibble on cookies and sip hot chocolate and hot spiced cider.
Pelznickel, a German character who cautions children to behave, will hand out candy. Pelznickel's visit will precede Santa Claus, who will arrive with a police escort at 7:15 p.m.
Glick said thousands of new lights will decorate the 40-foot fir tree. The real-estate firm of Vutech and Ruff will help decorate the park on Beck Street between Fifth and Sixth streets.
The Christmas tree lighting usually precedes Village Lights for a weekend of Christmas revelry, but this year's calendar dictated otherwise. Village Lights -- which was held Sunday, Dec. 1 -- is always the first Sunday in December and the tree lighting is the first Friday.
On a related note, the Garten Club has decorated 19 trees along Third Street, some of which have been dedicated to pets and loved ones.
Also, residents have honored the late Jo Plunkett, an ardent supporter of Frank Fetch Park who died Oct. 10.
A tree has been dedicated in her honor at the Meeting Haus and decorated with ornaments bearing Plunkett's image.