Christmas 2009

Community celebrates the season with variety of events

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Dennis Fendler photo

Santa and Mrs. Claus, arriving on a Payson Fire Department truck, helped kick off the Rim Country Christmas season with an appearance at the Nov. 27 Swiss Village Lighting Festival.

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Dennis Fendler/Roundup

Pine and Strawberry residents had their first Festival of Lights this year, featuring a parade and a visit from Santa.

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Pete Aleshire/Roundup

A traditional Christmas pageant, along with added attractions, was presented to the community by the Payson Ministerial Fellowship.

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Andy Towle/Roundup - atowle@payson.com

Students, parents and the community were treated to a special Christmas Shop at Frontier Elementary School this year.

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Andy Towle/Roundup - atowle@payson.com

Students at Payson Elementary School entertained family and friends at their annual Christmas program.

Christmas in the Rim Country has many facets — all unique, all beautiful. Residents are blessed to have neighbors willing to share their skills and talents to make the holidays more merry and memorable.

The Christmas festivities started right after Thanksgiving with the Swiss Village Lighting Festival and the new Festival of Lights in Pine.

This was followed the first weekend in December by the Tamales for Toys, Main Street/APS Electric Light Parade and lighting the Town Christmas tree in Green Valley Park. That same weekend, the Payson Ministerial Fellowship presented the annual Christmas pageant with music, fun and the stuff of all traditional pageants, the retelling of the Christmas story. Pine celebrated one of its own special traditions that first weekend, opening the annual Nativity Display, where the residents of Pine and Strawberry bring their family Nativity sets to be exhibited for all the community to share.

The next weekend, the big Payson Choral Society Christmas concert was presented, and the Payson Friends of Jazz and others were entertained by Pete Pancrazi.

This past weekend, Dec. 20, Mount Cross Lutheran Church opened its doors for a Christmas cantata.

Spread over the last several weeks there have been any number of special programs for and by the area’s children: concerts in the schools and a party at the Payson Public Library.

Hopefully, you had the opportunity to enjoy one of these events, but if you didn’t, we at The Rim Review, hope you enjoy the photos we bring to you in this edition that captured some of the magic of the season.

There are still special events to attend to celebrate the holiday — there are candlelight services at churches throughout the Rim Country. Even if you aren’t a member of the church, the doors are open and congregations welcoming.

Merry Christmas.

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