On Friday, December 1, residents of Cooper City celebrated the start of the holiday season with lights, food and music at the annual Light Up Cooper City event. Taking place at Memorial Park and the Cooper City Community Center, clubs and families came from all over the city to take part.
Light Up Cooper City gives residents an opportunity to get excited for the holidays by covering town hall and Memorial Park with lights, candles and holiday decorations. This included Christmas lights on the trees, candles lining the walkways and other creative ways to light up the park and buildings.
The event began at 6 p.m. with a short parade as the Cooper City Sound of Pride Marching Band and Color Guard marched in playing familiar football game tunes. To add to the festivities, many of the marching band members wore Santa hats and decorated their instruments with tinsel and Christmas lights.
“Performing at Light Up Cooper City was a really great experience as I was able to spend it dancing to a festive song with friends that I love being around,” freshman Color Guard member Sabrina Wong said. “I was filled with joy and happiness from seeing the smiles in the crowd’s faces.”
Trailing not far behind the band was Santa Claus, being pulled by a horse rather than a reindeer. The band’s performance concluded with the holiday classic “Let it Snow” before Santa came on stage to kick off the night. Following this, families had the opportunity to meet and take pictures with Santa.
“I always enjoy Light Up Cooper City because it is a great community event that brings everyone together,” senior band member Caroline Callahan said. “It is important for the band to give back to the community by performing at events like these.”
The Sound of Pride was not the only musical entertainment provided; students from Pioneer Middle School also had the opportunity to show off their abilities by playing Christmas and Hanukkah music. Also, choirs from all over the city attended, including the “Joyful Noise” chorus from Embassy Creek Elementary School.
The event also offered plenty of fun activities. For example, many craft stations were open at the recreation center for anyone to take part in. All were invited to do holiday art and crafts projects such as decorating ornaments. There was even a train ride and bounce house available for the kids at the event to enjoy.
Light Up Cooper City is an opportunity for clubs and organizations all around town to get involved and set up fundraisers. CCHS’s NJROTC volunteered to assist with the parking craze and patrol the event. Other CCHS clubs got involved as well with their own fundraising table, such as the yearbook staff. Along with this, the Pioneer Middle School band showed up for their annual bake sale to raise money for new instruments and field trips.
Light Up Cooper City is one of the most beloved and highly attended events of the year. With all of the friends, activities and food that were present, residents of Cooper City are happy to have checked this event off of their calendars and are now eagerly awaiting the seasonal events that are to come.
“I just love Light Up Cooper City,” Wong said. “The lights and decorations made me feel even more excited for the upcoming holidays.”
Photo by Sarah Khan