Monument Lighting Ceremony Returns to Mt. Vernon This Thursday

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With Thanksgiving come and gone, you’ve probably seen neighbors putting up Christmas lights and decorations. You may have even had the chance to see the opening of Hampden’s dazzling light display on 34th Street this past weekend. Even so, one could argue the holidays won’t have officially arrived until the Washington Monument in Mt. Vernon has been lit up this Thursday night.

The 45th annual monument lighting falls on Dec. 1. Just like last year, the city will be lighting a colorful array of more than 16,000 LED lights emanating down from the top of the tower. But since that doesn’t happen until 7:45 p.m., those in attendance should take the time to enjoy the rest of the fanfare.

Starting at 5 p.m., the holiday market and a beer garden will be opening around the monument. The market is set to have more than 30 vendors, including lots of food (BricknFire Pizza Co., the Gypsy Queen Food Truck, The Verandah) and stalls for organizations and businesses like the Downtown Partnership, Domino Sugar and Center Stage.

Kids will have plenty to keep them busy and creative too, with arts and crafts activities provided by The Hippodrome Theatre and Art With a Heart, along with face painting and a so-called pixelated photobooth” with Santa Claus.

Beginning at 6 p.m., guests can catch performances the Morgan State Choir, Baltimore-based pop-rock trio Bravenoise and other acts, as well as a special homecoming set from vocal instrumentalist and ukelele virtuoso Victoria Vox, who moved out to California earlier this year.

Toward the end of the evening, Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith and a family from the Ronald McDonald House will lead the countdown to the lighting, the fireworks and the light show, all of which ends around 8 p.m.

Click here to read more about the festivities.

Ethan McLeod
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