And A Surprise Visit by Santa and Mrs. Claus
On Monday evening, November 30, St. Anthony Community Hospital hosted a tree lighting ceremony to celebrate the start of the Christmas season with members of the community and staff.
It was a truly joyous celebration with traditional Christmas carols performed by the Warwick Valley High School Meistersingers. And there were welcoming wishes for the holiday season by Bon Secours Charity Health System CEO Dr. Mary Leahy. Special guests, Town of Warwick Supervisor Michael Sweeton and Mayor Michael Newhard were introduced to those attending.
Before heading outside for the tree lighting ceremony there were invocations and blessings of the tree by Chaplain Tracy Kessler and Sister Mary Spano. Then came the surprise.
As the group gathered outside and the Meistersingers continued their caroling, a Warwick Police Department vehicle and motorcycle escort, with lights flashing and sirens sounding, pulled up to the main entrance of the hospital. And, to the delight of the children as well as the adults, out stepped Santa and Mrs. Claus.
Santa then read a special tree lighting poem. The tree lights were turned on and everyone was invited back inside the hospital’s main lobby to enjoy a reception and refreshments featuring cookies, hot chocolate and apple cider. And during the celebration Santa and Mrs. Claus graciously posed for photographs and distributed gifts to the children.