Downtown Christmas event draws big crowd for first year

Santa was brought to downtown Whiteville courtesy of the Whiteville Fire Department.
Santa was brought to downtown Whiteville courtesy of the Whiteville Fire Department.

Saturday’s kickoff of the Christmas season in Whiteville drew a larger crowd than anticipated for carriage rides, music and the official arrival of Santa Claus.
The Original Whiteville Santa wielded the special wand to turn on the new Christmas decorations as well as the tree and lights at Vineland Station.

The event was held in conjunction with Small Business Saturday, and most downtown businesses stayed open into the evening to welcome shoppers.

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Mayor Terry Mann (right) keeps an eye out for Santa’s arrival Saturday.
The Columbus Community Band entertained the crowd at Saturday’s event.
Having left his sleigh on the outskirts of town, Santa caught a ride with the
Whiteville Fire Department to officially start the holiday season downtown.
The crowd began gathering around 4:30 p.m. at Vineland Station.

Santa, wielding a special wand to light the downtown lights, fires up the crowd Saturday.
Santa began visiting with well-wishers almost before he exited the fire truck Saturday.
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Jefferson Weaver is the managing editor of columbuscountynews.com and news director for WTXY radio. He can be reached at 910.632.4965, or by email at jeffersonweaver@columbuscountynews.com.