Making Memories and Spreading Cheer: NRCA’s Christmas Tree Lighting

Making Memories and Spreading Cheer: NRCA’s Christmas Tree Lighting

By: Parker Hodgson, Shield Editor

    As students returned from their week off for Thanksgiving break, NRCA families gathered for the annual Christmas tree lighting. This year was the fourth anniversary of the event and served as a great time for fellowship. 

     The ceremony helps unite families, as well as get the holiday spirit going in full effect. “During the tree lighting, members of my class and the Student Leadership Academy serve hot chocolate, Christmas cookies, and candy canes to all that arrive,” Alumni and Student Relations Director Tiffany Benson said. 

     This year, the Honors Ensemble also sang, and the handbell choir performed. NRCA wanted students and their families to create community memories like the ones that happened at the tree lighting. 

     “I had the idea of adding this community-building event one night and then presented the idea to Dr. Mathes,” Benson said. “We researched different commercial Christmas tree companies and ended up deciding to order a 19-foot tree.” The tree was extended six additional feet to make it 25 feet tall in honor of the school’s 25th anniversary during the 2020 Christmas season.  

     The event seems to go almost perfectly each year because there is much work and preparation behind the scenes. The tree takes around 4-5 hours to fully install and requires more than 20 people to set up. “My Event Planning and Management class helps put up the tree, along with our maintenance crew and members of the basketball team,” Benson said. 

     Perhaps the best part of the event came before the lighting. Superintendent Dr. Kevin Mathes read Luke 2 as all gathered around to listen. Following the Scripture reading, the Dial family had the honor of lighting the tree as everyone counted down.  

     After the tree lit up, fake snow fell to the ground, and little children gathered around to play.