Santa needs helpers for tree lighting

Santa Claus needs helpers again this year to light the holiday tree on Fountain Square, and Downtown Evanston is inviting them all to the tree lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 23.

The celebration includes an outdoor performance of holiday carols by the Music Institute of Chicago Youth Choir and a visit from Santa Claus who’ll arrive on an Evanston fire truck.

The tree again this year will not only be green itself but also will be decorated in a "green" environmentally-conscious style with thousands of energy-efficient, reusable LED lights.

Right after the ceremony, Rotary International will host a warm-up reception with holiday goodies in the cafe at One Rotary Center, 1560 Sherman Ave., just south of Fountain Square.

In the spirit of holiday giving, warm essentials including socks, long underwear, gloves and hats will be accepted for donation to Hilda’s Place, Evanston’s emergency housing and support services for the homeless.

Free parking is available after 5 p.m. in the One Rotary Center Building garage, with entry on Grove Street just west of Sherman Avenue.

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