weather icon Clear

Pahrump Community Christmas Tree lights up the night

Christmastime is officially in full swing and in Pahrump, the most wonderful time of the year is always welcomed to the valley with what has become a beloved tradition, the Community Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony.

Hosted Saturday, Nov. 30 in the parking lot of the Pahrump Nugget Hotel and Casino, the 6th Annual Community Christmas Tree Lighting once again attracted a big crowd of area residents and their families for what event organizer Karen Jackson of KNYE Radio hailed as the most outstanding lighting ceremony yet.

“This was our best lighting ever!” an obviously ecstatic Jackson raved following the event. “No wind, rain or snow. I was very happy with the turnout, everyone seemed to be enjoying the lighting.”

Bundled up in warm coats and jackets, scarves and gloves, the community headed out to take in the sights and sounds of the Christmas kickoff event, many sporting Santa hats and other holiday garb. While there, attendees were able to indulge in cookies and hot cocoa as they enjoyed classic holiday tunes sung by the Pahrump Community Choir.

The arrival of Santa on a shiny red fire engine sent a wave of anticipation through the throng as children surged toward the man in the red suit and his faithful elf companion, roles taken this year by Don Stout and Carey Stone. Beaming brightly with cheeks burnished red from the frosty weather, the youngsters approached merry Old Saint Nick to relay their Christmas wishes as their parents eagerly snapped keepsake pictures.

“It’s the most magical time of the year, when people seem more giving and understanding of others. Family and friends seem closer for this brief moment of the year,” Jackson said of her fondness for the Christmas season.

As for the reason behind the effort to bring the community Christmas tree to life each year, Jackson said, “Why do I do this? If more people would come watch the kids decorate our community Christmas tree, that would explain why I do this every year. The kids take ownership of that tree every year. It is heartwarming and reminds me of what Christmas is about. Then there are the less fortunate kids who won’t have a tree this year but they can come to the lighting and feel the spirit as well as talk to Santa.”

Jackson gave a shout-out of thanks to the many people and entities involved in making the Community Christmas Tree Lighting a success, including Valley Electric Association and Pahrump Nugget engineers, who worked together to erect the tree, as well as Pahrump Valley Fire and Rescue Service for escorting Santa Claus to the event.

Thanks also went out to the Pahrump Community Choir for their beautiful music, the Pahrump Nugget for the refreshments provided, the Pahrump Tourism Advisory Committee for the donation of new ornaments to decorate the tree and of course, to Stout and Stone for their work as Santa and his elf.

Though the lighting ceremony is undoubtedly a highlight of the Christmas season, the community Christmas tree is not just a gathering place for one brief night. Residents and visitors regularly stop by to enjoy the sight throughout the entire month. The tree makes a festive backdrop for photographs and Jackson said families are more than welcome to head over to capture their own special memories to cherish for years to come.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Exposure forces closure of Pahrump Justice Court

The Pahrump Justice Court announced Monday that it will be closed effective Tuesday, July 7 because of a COVID-19 exposure.

Tax deadline coming up on July 15

As the July 15 deadline for filing income taxes nears, the IRS is reminding taxpayers who have yet to file that IRS.gov has tools and services to help them meet their tax obligations.

Bars closed again in Nye, 6 other Nevada counties

Nye County was one of seven Nevada counties affected when the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services announced the elevated disease transmission criteria for determining whether a county must revert to Phase 1 of the state’s reopening plan for bars.

Appreciation Picnic honors Pahrump’s and Nye’s first responders

With red, white and blue decorations gracing tables, American flags and banners lining the fence and snapping in the breeze, balloons floating in the air and big smiles at the ready, area residents came together last week to honor the men and women who take on the duties of first responders for not just Pahrump but the entire county of Nye.

Pahrump pool season sinks amid lack of lifeguards

After the announcement that the 2020 Pahrump Community Pool season had been scrapped because of a lack of staffing applicants and the subsequent push to get more locals to apply for one one of the open positions that followed, the town of Pahrump was hoping that this year’s pool season would be saved.

UNR scientists make key advance in X-ray images

A team of scientists, led by University of Nevada, Reno’s Hiroshi Sawada, an associate professor of physics, demonstrated that numerical modeling accurately reproduces X-ray images using laser-produced X-rays. The images were obtained using the university’s chirped pulse amplification-based 50-terawatt Leopard laser at their Zebra Pulsed Power Lab.

Studies determine shutdown saved millions

Two separate research studies determined that shutdown orders prevented about 60 million coronavirus infections in the United States and saved about 3.1 million lives in 11 European countries.

Bicyclist dies after being struck by vehicle

A Pahrump man is dead after being struck by a vehicle while riding a bicycle Friday evening, July 3rd.

Camp Fire of 2018 leads to new wildfire research

Moved by the tragedy of the 2018 Camp Fire, a team of engineers and scientists are coming together in a new five-year project to develop a comprehensive computational, live digital platform to predict and monitor wildfire risk that can be used by wildfire managers, emergency responders and utility companies to plan for, respond to and remediate wildfires.