Starlighting 2016

Stephanie Rottman, Newspaper Staffer

The lighting of the Castle Rock star is one of the oldest and well known traditions throughout Colorado. Dating back to the original star lighting in 1936. Its definitely a staple event for many families around this time of year. As individuals and families from Castle Rock and surrounding areas gathered around downtown, there was no denying the festive spirit in the air.

With Santa and his elves taking Christmas present requests from young children, kids were certainly in for a treat that night. Children of all ages took part in several different activities throughout the night, the drinking of hot cocoa after a nice skate on the newly reopened ice rink, singing of christmas carols around the square, waving around a light up toy that they had convinced their parent to buy, and of course counting down the minutes until the star would be lit for all of Castle Rock to see.  

The annual star lighting event brought crowds to celebrate the 80-year old tradition started during the Great-Depression as a way to bring hope to the residents of castle rock at a time that the future looked so dreary. The town decided to put the star on top of the rock as a sign of hope and prosperity for the future. Hoping that it would help the community get through the hardships that were upon them. This event now symbolizes the start of the holiday season and a reason for the community to get together.

As the minutes ticked down people began to gather around the square, where the main stage was set up, with several different speakers talking about the holiday season  and upcoming events taking place within Castle Rock. A special visit from Santa himself on the stage, let many children giddy and excited to see the famous lighting of the tree and star. After a few Christmas carols it was finally time for the final countdown to light the star. As the crowd unanimously chanted down from five, they became louder and louder each number.

Instead of stopping after one the crowd continued and yelled out towards the top of the rock, “LIGHT THAT STAR”. Once the star was lit, it sent excitement through the crowd causing shrieks of happiness from many of the young children.