Milton readying for WinterFest

Brenda Reeder, co-chair of the Milton WinterFest committee, said the festivities will continue this December, although on a modified basis due to COVID-19.

MILTON — As she sat recently on a bench in Lincoln Park — bundled up in a heavy winter coat, hat and gloves — Brenda Reeder noted it was appropriate she picked the coldest day of the season thus far to talk about Milton WinterFest.

Reeder is co-chair of the Milton WinterFest committee, along with Derek Longan. She said it was important to the committee to offer some holiday activities in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We wanted to do something, even though COVID seems to be ramping up,” Reeder said. “Most of our events have been canceled. Our breakfast with St. Nicholas, we decided there is no safe way to do that.”

Milton’s annual holiday tree lighting ceremony will continue, although in a different format than previous years.

“The tree lighting will be Dec. 4 (in Lincoln Park),” Reeder said. “Santa and Mrs. Claus will be riding the fire truck from 5:30 to 6 (p.m.).”

The Milton Fire Department will be escorting the visitors from the North Pole throughout the borough prior to the tree lighting ceremony.

Reeder said families are encouraged to go onto their porches and wave as Santa and the fire trucks pass by.

She shared the path Santa will travel on Dec. 4. After leaving the Milton Fire Department, the procession will travel on the following streets: Race Street, Front Street, Mahoning Street, Shakespeare, Vertie Lane, Old Orchard Road, Sycamore Lane, through the Milton Area High School to Mahoning Street, Brown Aveue, Center Street, Poplar Avenue, Park Lane, Park Avenue, Link Drive, Wilson Circle, Derr Drive, Spottswood Drive, Golf Course Road, Cardnial Drive, Red Hill Road, Rolling Ridge Drive, Golf Course Road, Locust Street, Lincoln Street, Ninth Street and Front Street to Lincoln Park.

“Santa will light the (borough Christmas) tree from the fire truck, by magic,” Reeder explained.

She said any children who do come to Lincoln Park for the tree lighting will receive a small gift.

On Saturday, Dec. 5, the committee will be holding its second annual Sleigh Run, along Bound Avenue. Registration will take place between 2 and 3 p.m., with the race starting at 3.

According to Reeder, teams of three to five people will compete in sleighs made to be pushed along the roadway.

“It can not be automatically powered or store bought,” Reeder said, stressing that the sleighs must be homemade.

Small prizes will be awarded.

The committee’s final activity to be held this year will be a snowflake hunt, taking place Dec. 7-23.

A snowflake will be placed in the window of various Milton businesses. Individuals who spot the snowflake should take a selfie with it, and post it to the Milton WinterFest Facebook page. Small prizes will be awarded.

For this holiday season, Reeder said the committee purchased 10 new holiday lights, which will place older ones to be placed throughout Milton by the borough’s Department of Public Works.

The lights are in addition to 10 other new lights which the committee purchased in 2019. According to Reeder, the new lights cost approximately $400 each.

She said the new lights were purchased as the result of a fundraiser the committee held last year. No fundraisers were able to be held this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Those attending Milton WinterFest activities this year should wear a mask and practice social distancing.

Staff writer Kevin Mertz can be reached at 570-742-9671 or email kevin@standard-journal.com.

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