About 300 residents and visitors spent time listening to choirs sing, petting Clyde the Camel, seeing the meaning of Christmas come to life in the nativity scene, exploring the display of Christmas from 100 years ago and telling Santa Claus their Christmas wishes during Christmas in Melba on Wednesday, Dec. 5.
A big hit again this year was Clyde the Camel, led by owner Gary Drake dressed in period attire, as he wondered the streets for kids and adults to get an up close look and even pet the 8-foot-tall animal.
“It is unique and fun to see him up close,” said Christmas in Melba committee member Beth Cole.
Before the evening officially began, many people came to the Melba Friends church for a helping of hot soup.
“The hay ride was fun,” said Cole. “When everyone was done the people still wanted to ride.”
Melba Mayor Doug Sturges, Pastor Sam Knowland and participants gathered around the city Christmas tree to join in singing Christmas songs together in the Spirit of Christmas before the tree was lit up.
“It was neat, everybody was one,” said resident, teacher and coach Cory Dickard.
Dickard related the moments singing together to when the Whos from Whoville were merrily singing around the tree together in the movie, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”
Madge Wylie, Unofficial Official Historian of Melba, did the honors of putting the power to the lights and bringing the tree to life with color.
“It is so great to live in a community as friends and neighbors and not be afraid to openly say Merry Christmas and celebrate the true meaning of Christmas,” said Sturges during his address to the community.
The Centennial Family of 1912, played by the Dayley family, represented the way it was at a typical Christmas in 1912.
Santa Claus had a steady line of kids telling him their Christmas wishes all evening until he was picked up by the Melba Fire Department and delivered to City Hall for the tree lighting ceremony, while the song Hear Comes Santa Claus rung out from the fire engine loud speakers.
Trips around town on the hay ride, sponsored by Ode and Ronette Mitchell of Sutherland Farm, lasted well beyond the tree lighting ceremony.
The live nativity scene gathered crowds to see the Birth of Christ reenacted.
Special thanks to all the sponsors and contributors.
The Christmas in Melba committee would like to thank Sutherland Farm, Clyde the Camel and Drake family, All three wards of the Melba LDS church, Melba Friends Church, Valleywide Ag, Melba Valley Worship Center, Madge Wylie, St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, Melba Baptist Church, Luttrell family, Melba Fire Department, VanSchoiack families, Troy Richardson, Melba High School Choir, Rosie Peck, Strom family, Bradshaw family, Sturgis family, Olsen Family, Rogers family, committee members and City of Melba.