Downtown Napanee will have the cure for the early darkness of Daylight Savings when the town flips the switch to another season of the Big Bright Lights on Nov. 17.
The Town of Greater Napanee will mark the occasion with their official launch party, shutting down vehicle traffic on Dundas Street from East Street and Robert Street between 6 and 7:30 p.m. At 7 p.m. the switch will be flipped and over 170,000 tiny coloured LED light bulbs dangling from the storefronts will illuminate the downtown core.
“We’re actually doing our final testing and getting the timer up and ready to go,” said Bethany Lessard, youth program and special events assistant with Greater Napanee. “Next week we’re going to plug away at doing all the extension cords on all the displays in the parks.”
Along with the downtown core, Christmas- and winter-themed light displays will once again be placed along the riverfront trail.
The timing for the launch couldn’t be much better. Not only does it get darker earlier, but the winter weather is just beginning to creep in.
“It’ll certainly feel like Christmas is coming on (Nov.) 17 when we launch everything,” said Lessard. “If we could get a few flurries to set the mood that would be good, but not too cold that’s for sure.”
Local band Trilogy will provide the entertainment throughout the night and Santa Claus is expected to be on site throughout the night for photos.
The event is presented by the town, Napanee BIA, TransCanada and D&D Electrocraft.
The town will also be hosting a food drive that night and encourages anyone who attends to bring a bag of nonperishable food to be dropped off at TD Canada Trust. The food will be distributed to those in need this holiday season.
Following the official launch, the lights will come on every night throughout the end of January. This will mark the sixth year of the Big Bright Lights.
Once again the town will also be hosting the Big Bright Light Home Contest, where residents can submit an online form to have their own holiday display judged by a panel of volunteers and municipal staff. They’ll be judged on visual charm, originality, variety of decorations used and overall impact. This year there will be two categories: Classy Christmas and Chaotic Christmas.
Participants must fill out an online form on the town’s website by Dec. 15 and judging will take place during the evening hours of Dec. 20. The winners will be contact via e-mail.