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Trail of Lights holiday greeters return
new trail of lights pic
Exhibits like the one shown will be part of Great Bends Trail of Lights, a seasonal tradition. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO


Great Bend continues to invite visitors to follow the Trail of Lights from one end of town to the other this holiday season. Folks at home can get involved as greeters on select evenings, said Sarah Krom with the holiday committee.

The Trail of Lights includes the Barton County Historical Society Museum and Village on south U.S. 281, "Wild Lights" at Brit Spaugh Park, a Christmas Nativity scene at 10th St. and K-96, and "The 12 Days of Christmas" at Veterans Park. These lighted displays will be featured from Nov. 24 through Dec. 30.

Travelers along the Trail of Lights will be greeted by smiles and waves as they enter Brit Spaugh Park, Krom said. On duty from 6-9 p.m., volunteer greeters hand out shopper packets, give directions and answer questions about the community.

Greeters were part of the tradition when the Trail of Lights began, but in recent years they had not been used. The practice was reinstated in 2009, and last year’s greeters had contact with visitors from Florida to Hawaii, Krom said. They greeted people in 1,848 vehicles in 13 nights. "We made an impact on quite a few people."

Businesses, civic clubs and families are needed to supply volunteer greeters this year. No special uniforms or equipment are needed, and volunteers are provided an area for shelter.

To volunteer, contact Krom at 620-792-1321 for scheduling.

Other holiday events include a free program on Holiday Traditions from Around the World, offered from noon to 1 p.m. today at the Great Bend Senior Center, 2005 Kansas Ave.; the annual Mission Bazaar, sponsored by the Dominican Sisters of Great Bend, from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 3600 Broadway Ave.; and a Winter Instrumental Concert, at 7:30 p.m. Monday at Barton Community College’s Fine Arts Auditorium. Beginning Monday, the college will also continue its tradition of having area grade school children decorate Christmas trees in its Shafer Gallery.

More seasonal activities include that start this month include free ice skating in the courthouse square. Skates will be provided at times to be announced. The first dates are Thursday and Friday, Nov. 25 and 26, from 4-8 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 27, from 1-8 p.m.; and Sunday, Nov. 28, from 1-5 p.m.

It all leads up to the Holiday Parade, at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 27, with the theme "Our Favorite Christmas Story." Krom is also the person to contact about getting an entry in the parade.