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Candlelight Walk opens the holiday season in Wadsworth

By Beau Dusz correspondent

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Ava and Chase Geary tell their desires to Santa and Mrs. Claus at the Candlelight Walk Friday. (Beau Dusz/

The mood was festive, the night was cool and the crowds were great as people strolled through the streets of downtown Wadsworth for the Candlelight Walk Friday evening.

The Wadsworth High School Band began the ceremonies with a number of Christmas selections, and Salvation Army Director Tom Grace gave a few remarks. City Council President Tom Palecek threw the switch to light the Christmas tree on the lawn of the Wadsworth Historical Society's historic home. The holiday season had officially begun in downtown Wadsworth.

After the opening ceremonies, the crowds flocked to St. Marks Church. There, Roger Havens narrated a story he had written," The Miracle at St. Marks." Then Santa Claus appeared riding on the fire department's ladder truck. Santa was hoisted in the air near the newly renovated bell tower of St. Marks to ring the bell since it had not been rung for many years. The crowd cheered and clapped.

As the crowds streamed along the streets, cookies, hot chocolate and other delicacies greeted them at every turn. People waited in long lines at Ritzman's Pharmacy to tell Santa and Mrs. Claus their Christmas desires.

The streets blazed with up to 400 luminaries and lighted trees along the route of the strollers. Horse-drawn carriages provided a ride around the area.

A number of activities for the children centered at the Center for Older Adults. Those activities included face painting, greeting card-making and a make-and-take workshop.

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