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Santa to visit Sidney, light downtown tree

Weekend festivities mark beginning of Christmas season


Shannon Ireland

The Christmas season in Sidney will kick off this weekend with lamplight tours Friday at the Fort Sidney Museum and a tree lighting ceremony at Hickory Street Square on Saturday.

The tree lighting events will take place from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the downtown area. Santa will arrive via fire truck to light the tree officially and then he'll head over to the Book & Corner to meet Sidney's youth.

"All the local kids are invited to bring their letters and wish lists and there will be photos available," said city manager Gary Person.

Chili, chips and brownies will be available for $5 at the Elks after the tree lighting while hot chocolate will be available at the square.

Shannon Ireland

The Historic Downtown Sidney organization, in partnership with the City of Sidney, decorated the Christmas tree in Hickory Square this week. New decorations will be added each week and events will be held for the community while the street is closed. The tree will stay up through the first of the year.

Many of the downtown businesses will be open during the events, Person said.

Several additional events have already been scheduled at the square during the rest of the holiday season including a performance from the dance team and another appearance by Santa.

After the city council stressed desire to see more activities at the square during the holiday season at its last meeting, community development director Megan McGown and Glenna Phelps-Aurich, director of the Cheyenne County Chamber of Commerce have worked very hard with various groups around town to make that happen, Person said.

Councilman Mark Nienhueser also thanked McGown for all the work she'd done to put together events at the square.

"I'd like to encourage our citizens to attend as many as they can to support our downtown businesses and all the work that goes into it," Nienhueser said.

Lamplight tours at the Fort Sidney Museum will take place this Friday from 6 p.m.-8 p.m.


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