SOMERVILLE, NJ - The stage is set for the official arrival of Santa Claus Nov. 25 with the borough's official Christmas tree decorated, with lights strung and ready to be lit on the Division Street pedestrian mall.
No snow yet, but with crisp temperatures and brisk winds blowing down Division Street, it's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas; a few merchants have already begun trimming their windows with holiday decorations.
Chip Yannetta, who works for Somerville's Downtown Somerville Alliance and his crew had the tree set up Tuesday, and by early Wednesday morning, he was checking the electrical connections to make sure the tree will light up when Santa arrives to launch the holiday season.
A crowd will begin to gather late in the afternoon for the borough's Holiday Jubilee, with the festivities scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. on the Division Street Plaza with musical entertainment. Santa will arrive around 5:45 p.m. on Engine 5, a 1942 pumper maintained and driven by Rich O'Neil of the Somerville Fire Department.
Santa will light the tree, with other activities scheduled through the evening. Stores will be open for shopping and restaurants will be serving dinner.
5:15 p.m. – Music and dancers at Division Street Plaza
5:45 p.m. – Arrival of Santa for tree lighting and welcome from Somerville Mayor Brian Gallagher at Division Street Plaza
6 p.m. – Horse drawn carriage rides beginning at Division Street Plaza extending through 9 p.m.
6:15 p.m. – Free photos with Santa on the front lawn of the United Reformed Church, 100 West Main Street
Rev. Paul Janssen, pastor of the United Reformed Church located in the heart of Downtown Somerville at 100 W. Main St., will host Santa for photos, serve free hot cocoa, and entertain visitors with Christmas and holiday songs performed by a bell choir comprised of members and friends of the church.
For more information visit www.downtownsomerville.com.