Along with the sudden rush of winter weather and the accompanying flood of Ugg boots and North Face jackets, Baylor’s annual Christmas on 5th Street celebration will help usher in the holiday season from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m today.
The celebration includes several simultaneous activities at locations across campus, including Fountain Mall, Burleson Quadrangle, Traditions Plaza and the Bill Daniel Student Center.
Carriage rides in a horse-drawn buggie, concerts featuring talent from local bands and a national headliner, the lighting of the Baylor Christmas tree and other events, will be open to the public.
Some of these events include a petting zoo, taking pictures with and writing letters to Santa and Mrs. Claus, and a live Nativity scene.
The Christmas on 5th Marketplace, a vendors fair located on the third floor of the SUB is composed of around 30 vendors selling Christmas-related objects. It is the only aspect of Christmas on 5th that will cost money.
“It really is meant to be a community event, where Baylor becomes the center of Waco for one night and everybody comes to celebrate Christmas and celebrates together,” said Weslaco sophomore Carlos Gutierrez, a member of the Baylor Activities Council, which is one of the sponsors of the event.
Uproar Records, Baylor’s student-run record label, will be showcasing its talent in the SUB den.
Student artists performing under the label are The Derivatives, Dreamboat and Layne Lynch.
The Christmas tree lighting is one of the focal portions of the event. The tree was decorated and will be lit by the members of the Kappa Omega Tau fraternity.
“It’s kind of like a symbol of Christmas, that Christmas is finally here now that the tree is lit,” Gutierrez said.
Gutierrez said he expects close to 10,000 people to attend the event.
In the time surrounding the lighting of the grand Christmas tree, live bands will enter
tain the crowd.
The Kappa Pickers will start the concert series at 7 p.m., followed by Mockingbird Sun at 7:30 p.m. and then Mickey and the Motorcars at 8:30 p.m.
Then, after the lighting, headliner Dave Barnes, a Grammy nominated songwriter, will take the stage from 9:45 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Bryant said President Ken Starr usually makes an appearance during the Christmas tree lighting.
“Christmas on 5th is definitely a tradition that’s rooted here in Baylor and its something that not only Baylor faculty staff and
students, but the community alike look forward to,” Bryant said.
All of the festivities are scheduled to end around