Hundreds of people gathered in Fountain Square Tuesday evening for the traditional holiday tree lighting ceremony sponsored by the city and Downtown Evanston.

With a winter chill in the air, Santa was quick to point the crowd to the cafeteria at the nearby Rotary International building.

It seemed nobody was too young for a first audience with St. Nick …

…  who had quite a crowd of young admirers … 

and grown-ups who wanted pictures of the occasion …

while others warmed up with hot chocolate and sugary treats sure to keep the kids wired.

Back outside, the tree and streets full of decorations served as a reminder of holiday shopping and celebrations yet to come. 

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

Join the Conversation


  1. Where is the Creche?

    Evanston has a diverse and vibrant Christian Churches.  Whether alone or through ecumenical councils, these Churches advocate on many issues from nuclear free zones, immigration, social justice, global warming, homelessness to name a few.

    For all their good work, why have these Churches failed to put a Creche in Fountain Square?  Appropriately, the square hosts both the Menorah and Kawnza displays to celebrate the season.  Is it too much to ask our Christian Churches to dislay the Creche? 

    The Christmas tree is not a religous symbol. The US Supreme Court as ruled that Santa Claus and the Christmas Tree are secular symbols.  Would it be to much to ask these Churches to display a fundemental religous symbol that is the reason for the season.


    1. Here is why

      There is no Creche for the same reason you cannot say:

      Merry Chirstmas

      Radical Islam

      … etc.

      Get my drift? 

      Look around you.  Look left for the answer.

Leave a comment
The goal of our comment policy is to make the comments section a vibrant yet civil space. Treat each other with respect — even the people you disagree with. Whenever possible, provide links to credible documentary evidence to back up your factual claims.

Your email address will not be published.