FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The best time of the year in Fort Wayne begins on April 17thNS annual “Christmas on Broadway”.
This year’s celebration will take place on Friday, November 19 from 5:30 p.m. on Broadway Plaza.
The celebrations include a parade on Broadway with Santa and Mrs. Claus performing aboard the popular 1976 classic Pierce Fire Engine. It will be led by members of this summer’s Tokyo Paralympics Team who trained at Turnstone, along with cast members from the Fort Wayne Ballet’s Nutcracker performance and the Fort Wayne Community Schools’ b Instrumental program.
Turnstone is a local organization that empowers people with disabilities to reach their maximum potential by providing comprehensive services and programs. The “b Instrumental” program is designed to benefit students with access to music during their years of training.
The Parade Route begins on Broadway and Creighton and heads south to Broadway Plaza. Attendees are asked to line either side of Broadway along the parade route and then go to Broadway Plaza, where Mr. and Mrs. Claus will be handing out Christmas hats and stockings to all children present.
The spectacular 12-meter-high Colorado Blue Spruce is illuminated by participants of the Tokyo Paralympics who trained at Turnstone. Together with the tree lighting, a brilliant fireworks display will take place on Broadway Plaza in the heart of the “07” district in front of the Shine & Hardin Building.
This year’s tree was donated by Keith and Darla Baughman of Fort Wayne. The Baughmans planted the tree in their front yard in the mid-1980s when it was less than four feet tall. The majestic blue spruce has grown to a height of 12 m and will make a great presence on the course.
Thanks to the renovation work on the fountain on Broadway Plaza at the beginning of the year, the computer program that controls the different color patterns for the fountain in spring, summer and autumn enables a multitude of lighting scenarios to be lit every evening when the tree is up .
“Since its inception 17 years ago, when only 150 people gathered to see the lights for the thousands of crowds today, we have been proud to continue the tradition of this family-oriented event that marks the official start of the Fort Wayne vacation. Season, ”said legal partners Steve Shine and Tom Hardin of Shine & Hardin, LLP, the creators and organizers of this event.
Every year, Mudrack Tree Services puts the tree in its safe place: a large Christmas tree stand built by teams from Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. – Indiana / Kentucky Chapter. The tree is supplied with electricity by Custom Control and Machine, with the tree itself being decorated by A Yard Apart. Vision Scapes will take care of further preparations for the site.
This year the Christmas tree will be lowered on Monday morning November 15th at 5:30 a.m. During the entire week of November 15th, the crews of A Yard Apart will place the 40,000 lights on the tree and prepare the space for the expected thousands of spectators.
Longstanding corporate sponsors this year include Indiana’s largest health network, IU Health. Fort Wayne Komets – ECHL Kelly Cup winners – will pay for the fireworks display and join other corporate sponsors including Lake City Bank, Chuck and Lisa Surack of Sweetwater, Prairie Farms Dairy and Trinity English Lutheran Church, all of whom have come together to give this Christmas present to the community.
Brian Bauer, President of IU Health Fort Wayne and owner of the fire truck that took part in the parade, said he was delighted that both he and IU Health are making the holidays for those who otherwise may not have the opportunity to enjoy the holidays outside celebrate, make your neighborhood more beautiful. “We want to make the holidays as happy as possible for everyone in northeast Indiana, and our participation in Christmas on Broadway is helping us achieve that goal.”
Radio station WOWO (1190AM / 107.5FM) starts its 74thNS Annual Penny Pitch on the Pat Miller Show from 3:00 p.m. tree lighting afternoon, broadcast live from the square. Penny Pitch is the longest running local charity benefiting families in the area.
Gary Erdos, senior pastor at Trinity English Lutheran Church, commented that attending Christmas on Broadway helps make the holidays brighter for the community. “Throughout its long history, Trinity English has been a leader in the Fort Wayne community through its music and arts programs, child and youth work, and benevolent public outreach. Trinity English continues to be a dynamic, vibrant church ready to devote its vast resources to the spiritual growth of its people and the greater well-being of the city we call home, ”said Pastor Erdos.
“There’s nothing more spectacular than traveling Broadway every Christmas season to see the wonder and magic that the twinkling lights on the Christmas tree bring to the seven neighborhoods that border Broadway Plaza,” said Shine & Hardin. The seven neighborhoods are Creighton-Home, Historic South Wayne, Historic Oakdale, Fairfield, Illsley Place, Williams-Woodland, and West Rudisill.
“Christmas on Broadway, like the Fort Wayne Comets, has become a holiday tradition where family, friends, and neighbors gather in a neighborhood to marvel at Fort Wayne’s largest natural Christmas tree,” said Michael and Richard Franke , Members of the Franke family who own the Fort Wayne Comet. “The Komets are proud to be part of this event that symbolizes the unity and spirit of our community.” Fort Wayne Komets sponsor the fireworks portion of the tree lighting event, which sees both the Christmas tree and the fireworks lit at the same time in a spectacular display vivid colors that light up the sky.
Broadway Plaza is in the middle of the Broadway Corridor, the latter of which has become Fort Wayne’s main street corridor. The Broadway Corridor claims this title as the home of the largest neighborhood redevelopment project in the city’s history: the Electric Works.
However, Shine and Hardin stated that the most important element of the Broadway corridor is the thousands of families who call it home and have chosen to live in this thriving neighborhood.
Shine and Hardin also recognized Sweetwater’s Chuck and Lisa Surack for their significant financial contribution to the revitalized Quimby Village, which houses The Clyde and the adjoining Club Room. Your substantial financial commitment to the south end of Broadway Corridor has helped bring the surrounding neighborhoods to life and breathed new life into the urban community.
Christmas attendees on Broadway will be treated to Christmas drinks from Prairie Farms Dairy, including hot chocolate and eggnog. Santa’s reindeer will be present at the tree lighting, as will the “Polar Express”, a miniature train ride for the little ones to get on and enjoy.
“These wonderful corporate sponsors are making it possible for families who might otherwise not have the opportunity to enjoy the holiday season to attend the Christmas party right in the heart of their neighborhood,” said Shine and Hardin.