City tree lighting, fireworks going virtual

Pictured above in this file photo downtown Oswego is lit up for a previous year's Christmas tree lighting and fireworks celebration. Officials announced Wednesday the event would change due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Popular downtown kickoff to holiday season will stream 5 p.m. Nov. 28

OSWEGO — Mayor Billy Barlow announced Wednesday the 33rd annual Christmas tree lighting celebration will be broadcast live online with musical acts, a magician, dancing and remarks from Santa Claus.

The popular downtown event will be held Saturday, Nov. 28, beginning at 5 p.m. with the lighting of the tree in Donald Hill Memorial Plaza outside City Hall at roughly 6 p.m. followed immediately by fireworks being launched from the First Streets/Utica Street pedestrian bridge  

Traditionally, the tree lighting event has been a day-long affair full of activities and entertainment but due to COVID-19 and social distancing guidelines, the city has cancelled many of the day events.

“While cancelling the tree lighting event may have been the easiest thing to do, we’ve successfully worked to creatively transition our annual tree lighting celebration into an event that can easily be live-streamed from home and still be exciting,” said Mayor Billy Barlow.  “We still expect to have an evening filled with energy as we decorate our downtown, light our tree, and launch fireworks to appropriately kick off the holiday season in downtown Oswego.”

The city of Oswego at 5 p.m. will commence its “professionally produced program special with live entertainment” leading up to the tree lighting, according to the mayor’s office.

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