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Fort readies for Winterfest

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Choir, family band among groups performing ninth annual event at rec center

By Ben Wiebesiek

FORT LUPTON — The holiday season hasn’t arrived locally until the ol’ tannenbaum is glowing outside the recreation center, the centerpiece event of the city’s Winterfest.
    Visitors enjoying the tree lighting at 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, will also be treated to the holiday music from several church choirs.

    Monty Schuman, director of the city’s parks and recreation department, said this year’s event, now in its ninth year, will have plenty for the ears and the eyes from noon to 6 p.m.
    “We’re having quite a bit more music features this year,” Schuman said. “There’s a couple different groups that are going to be coming in.”
    Schuman said the seventh and eighth graders from the Fort Lupton Middle School band will be one of the performing acts, along with a family band and musicians from Mezzo Muzique, a new music school opening this year.
    “We’re trying it on a different day this year,” Schuman said. “In the past we’ve done it on Sunday afternoons, and we are moving it to a Saturday this year, trying to avoid some of the conflicts with some of the football games that are being played. We think that’s hurt us a bit in the past.”
    Active Adults & Special Events Coordinator Elena Metro said children can look forward to a ride on Spike the Train.
    “And there will also be carriage rides with Dolly, a paint [draft horse],” Metro said. “Dolly is with Hearts and Tails Carriage Company.”
    Inside the rec center, visitors will find a Christmas movies playing, carnival in the gymnasium, games of bingo — with turkeys and movies awarded as prizes – and, of course, Santa.
    “There will be face painting, cookie decorating going on in the gym as well,” Schuman said.
    From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., the 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus kids (Cody, Savannah, Trey and Katie) are doing their annual chili supper during Winterfest. They will also be doing a bake sale and a silent auction.
    The 4-H group has been working for three years to save up the money for a 13-day trip to Washington, D.C.
Tickets are available at the door: $6 adults (13 and up), 3-12 is $4 and children under 3 are free.
    “We’ll also be having our traditional holiday craft showcase,” Metro said.
    This year, Winterfest is on the same day as the anniversary of the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, so the Recreation Center is honoring World War II veterans during the tree lighting ceremony. Any veterans interested in being part of this tribute are encouraged to call the Rec Center at 303-857-4200.
    Schuman and Metro thanked the sponsors of Winterfest for their support, including Golden Aluminum, Bank of Colorado, United Power, Union Pacific and the City of Fort Lupton.
    “The council has always supported this event,” Schuman said. “And everyone is, of course, invited to Winterfest.”

Contact Ben Wiebesiek at 303-659-2522, ext. 205, or email bwiebesiek@metrowestnewspapers.com.