FAIRFIELD — It seemed as if the rain held out just long enough for the tree lighting Friday evening.
On a mild, quiet and mostly dry evening a crowd gathered around Fairfield’s towering Christmas tree.
The tree stood dim at Texas and Madison streets for the first half of event, but attendees didn’t seem to mind. Although the predictions of downpour, flooding and other rain-related catastrophes kept some people away, a sizable crowd took a chance and came out for the annual tree lighting.
Other cities in Solano County postponed their holiday events because of the weather. Fairfield hosted its main event as planned but postponed some other activities for a day. The city will offer train rides, “Candyland,” a scavenger hunt and free raffles from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday on the lawn between Jefferson and Texas streets. Pepperbellys will host a free showing of the movie “Elf” at 4 p.m.
Friday evening began with a preview showing of the local production “Little Shop of Horrors” at the Downtown Theatre and ended with performances from Dance-Sing Stars Studio, Chapkis Dance and the Crystal Middle School Band and Choir.
But the highlight of the evening came from a special visitor.
Crowds surrounded the stage at Madison Street singing Christmas carols led by Barbara McFadden while using the dim light of candles to read from a song book.
When McFadden finished “Jingle Bells” children and adults looked toward the sky as they heard something coming their way.
Most turned their heads down when they realized Santa was not coming in his sleigh but a Fairfield fire truck. The enthusiasm remained.
“Welcome to Fairfield,” McFadden announced as she hugged Santa Claus.
Moments later, the Christmas tree finally lit up, eliciting gasps and cheers from an enchanted audience.
Cheryl Clower, Leah Maynes and her children, Ella and Lucas, were among the enamored audience. Maynes’ newest child, 2-month-old Elizabeth, got to enjoy her first tree lighting and visit from Santa.
“It’s becoming a family tradition,” Clower said.
Reach Heather Ah San at 427-6977 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/HeatherMalia.