Story & Photos by Mark Neuman Dozens of local folks gathered in good cheer for one of Burien’s most enduring traditions on Wed. Dec. 2 â€“ the annual Tree Lighting Festival at Economy Wiringâ€™s store located on SW 148th Street in Burien. The St. Francis School Choir, led by Director Coleen Auxier, entertained the crowd with two sets of classic and stylized holiday carols. Santa Claus himself, clutching a bag full of candy canes, arrived, hitching a ride with the Burien/Normandy Park Fire Department. After handing out the canes, and before happily posing for group photos, Santa led the festival goers in a countdown to the official lighting of the fir tree just a few feet east of the Economy Wiring building. Indoors, cider and hot chocolate was served, while traditional Christmas tunes emanated from the sound system. The room was heated by the fully functioning fire inserts placed throughout the room. This festival has illuminated the Burien skyline for a long time now. Economy Wiring Company Founder Gwin Smith started the tradition in 1966. Over the years his small celebration has grown to include the St. Francis Choir and the King County Station #2 Burien/Normandy Park Fire Department. In the first eight years of the tree lighting, Gwin climbed the huge fir tree himself to install the lights and then climbed back up in January to take them down. This changed some years ago, when the fire department took responsibility for installing and removing the lights. Canned food and toys were collected for local families in need.
Economy Wiring Company 633 SW 148th Street Burien, WA www.economywiring.com Phone:Â 206-244-7542NOTE: Economy Wiring is an Advertiser with The B-Town Blog.]]>