WHIPPANY, NJ - It's beginning to look a lot like . . . time for the Hanover Wind Symphony Christmas concert. As the days are growing shorter and the temperatures are plunging, the renowned Hanover Wind Symphony (HWS) will ring in the Christmas spirit with its 12th annual "Christmas Presence" concert on Sunday, Dec. 8, at 3 p.m., at Our Lady of Mercy Church, 90 Whippany Road, in Whippany.

Local area church choirs will join HWS musicians to usher in the holidays with this festive and highly anticipated concert.

"The Hanover Wind Symphony is so glad to be returning to Our Lady of Mercy Church for our 12th year of 'Christmas Presence,' " says Matthew Paterno of Parsippany, HWS musical director. "This fabulous tradition allows us to stay connected with our community and share both the Christmas spirit and our passion for making music with an audience who have become our friends. It just wouldn't feel like the Christmas season without this performance!"

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Among the holiday favorites being performed at this "Christmas Presence" concert will be the following:

* Fanfare Prelude on Adeste Fidelis, by Tim Johnson; arranged by Stephen Bulla

* Candlelight Carol, by John Rutter

* Angels We Have Heard on High, arranged by Jay Dawson

* A Christmas Carol, by Alan Silvestri; arranged by Robert Longfield

* Let the Light of Christmas Shine, setting by James Swearingen

* Sing We Now of Christmas, arranged by Larry Kerchner

* A Christmas Festival, by Leroy Anderson

* Toboggan Ride, by Stan Applebaum

* The March of the Wooden Soldiers, by Leon Jessell; arranged by John Morissey

* Old Scottish Melody (Auld Lang Syne), arranged by Charles Wiley

* It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, by Eddie Pola and George Wyle, arranged by Chris Sharp

A rousing Christmas Sing-Along will close out the joy-filled program.

Paterno will conduct the wind band for most of the pieces. However, Kurt Zimmermann of Rockaway, HWS associate music director, will conduct Old Scottish Melody (Auld Lang Syne).

The Hanover Wind Symphony is a unique extension of the great American tradition of adult music performance. One of only a handful of outstanding community-based adult wind bands in New Jersey, the Hanover Wind Symphony delights audiences of all ages by giving a contemporary twist to traditional favorites. The large orchestra, made up exclusively of woodwind, brass and percussion instruments, embraces as its mission bringing "music to people and people to music."

For more than three decades, the Hanover Wind Symphony has played to enthusiastic audiences. HWS members share a love for music as well as a passion for enriching the cultural fabric of the community with the thrill of live wind band performances.They also help mentor the next generation of wind musicians.

Tickets to the Christmas Presence concert are $18 for adults, $15 for senior citizens and students aged 10 to 18, and children under 10 are admitted free. To reserve tickets, call the church at 973-887-0050.

For further information about the Christmas Presence concert or other upcoming HWS concerts, visit www.hanoverwinds.org.