OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) - While many cities have canceled holiday events, Ocean Springs went ahead with its annual Christmas Tree Lighting. Additional measures were taken, however, to keep the event as safe as possible for those who attended.
Just a few hours before lighting the Christmas tree, Mayor Shea Dobson held a special call City Council meeting to discuss how to safely host the Thursday night Christmas celebration.
“We’re going to have some hand sanitizing stations as well and we’ve limited the amount of stuff in the program regarding the choir and other attractions,” said Dobson. “We believe we can still go forward with this in a safe manner.”
And so that’s what the city did.
Cheers rang out as Santa Claus made an appearance and the tree lit up in beautiful twinkling lights. Many families were in attendance and some small business owners were downtown to see the Christmas lights and the tree.
“We do want to make sure that everybody spaces out so we are just asking everybody that is in a certain family unit, stay with that family unit, and try to social distance from others,” said Ocean Springs Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Cynthia Sutton. “In addition to that, we have signage out there kind of reminding everybody to socially distance and of course as always it’s also a personal responsibility.”
For local business owners, the event was appreciated.
“I’m just super grateful that the City of Ocean Springs has worked so hard to make these events happen while also being safe, especially because of COVID and everything that has happened this year, all the hardships that all the businesses and the community itself has faced,” said Brosh. “We’re just grateful to be able to get together and have these special events.”
The next holiday celebration on the Coast is happening Saturday night at Gautier’s Lights and Lagniappe on the Bayou, which will include a drive-in movie, tree lighting, and fireworks, all viewable from a person’s vehicle.
To see other holiday events happening along the Coast, visit Gulf Coast Weekend.