Dazzling Display of Lights Marks 2023’s Tree Lighting Ceremony in Prince Albert

Bailey Sutherland/Daily Herald The Prince Albert Children's Choir leads the crowd with Christmas carols during the Tree Lighting Ceremony outside City Hall on December 5, 2023. The choir was one of many attractions as residents flocked downtown for the ceremony.

Downtown Prince Albert came alive with festive cheer as close to 1000 visitors gathered outside City Hall on Tuesday, December 5, to witness this year’s Tree Lighting Ceremony. The event illuminated the city with a breathtaking display of over 8,000 Christmas lights, generously sponsored by Beau “Lac” Funeral Home.

Marianne Turcotte, co-owner of Beau “Lac” Funeral Home, said the response from the community was overwhelming.

“We were immensely surprised and delighted at the turnout, thinking possibly a few hundred may attend,” she said, adding that they are grateful to everyone for their participation and support.

“We have always placed great importance on giving back to our community, and this was a wonderful opportunity to provide a free, fun-filled evening for all ages to enjoy together.”

The Prince Albert Children’s Choir set the stage for the event with renditions of classic Christmas carols, creating a festive ambiance that resonated throughout the square.

“Nobody looks forward to Christmas more than children and it was so special to see the excitement that the magic of the season brings to them,” said Turcotte.

Turcotte, who had the honor of flipping the switch Tuesday evening, shared the significance of the Tree Lighting Ceremony in the community.

“The lighting of the tree represented far more than just the upcoming holidays,” said Turcotte. “The tree is a tangible focus of inspiration and hope, of community and connection and an uplifting of our spirits.”

The funeral home’s involvement added a special touch to this year’s celebration. Turcotte expressed their commitment to community engagement and the joy of giving back during the holiday season.

“We were able to shine a positive light on the city of Prince Albert,” said Turcotte. “We recognize the very basic human need for connection and the evening provided an opportunity for a time of renewal, and a spirit of kinship for so many of our families and neighbours.”

Aside from the lighting of the tree, visitors enjoyed hot cocoa and homemade treats courtesy of the city’s Ukrainian community, writing letters to Santa Claus in the City Hall foyer, horse drawn sleigh rides by River North Ranch, and the opportunity to see The Grinch, who made a special appearance to spread holiday cheer.

The event provided an opportunity for the community to come together, celebrate the season, and create lasting memories.

“We are already looking forward to next year’s Tree Lighting Ceremony,” said Turcotte. “The addition of more lights to the tree, and a few other “top secret” plans are already in the works.”

Turcotte added that any local groups or organizations that are interested in participating in next year’s event are more than welcome.

“We would love to have you join us”.