For the first time since it began 30 years ago, the Holiday Stroll in West Hartford Center and Blue Back Square moves to the first Friday night in December.
By Tom Hickey
Join your friends, family and just about everyone else on Friday, Dec. 1 for the annual Holiday Stroll in The Center and Blue Back Square .
“We moved it to a Friday night after much discussion about this year’s Holiday Stroll,” said event committee members Barbara Karsky representing the West Hartford Center Business Association; Blue Back Square Marketing Director Elizabeth Zigmont; and West Hartford Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Barbara Lerner. “Now families with school-aged children won’t be concerned about going home early.”
The Holiday Stroll begins at 5 p.m. and the entire event ends at 8:30 p.m.
Both The Center and Blue Back Square will feature a stage full of entertainment all evening long. The Center will utilize the Town of West Hartford’s Showmobile, and will park it on the corner of Farmington Avenue and LaSalle Road. Blue Back Square’s stage is located near Barnes & Noble.
Ryan Keating and other members of FLOW (Future Leaders of West Hartford), will kick off the events geared toward the 16-year-old-and-older crowd, with the “After Stroll” on the Showmobile in The Center from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m., featuring special holiday karaoke.
Entertainment Schedule for the Holiday Stroll (as of Nov. 27):
West Hartford Center Showmobile Stage (Corner of Farmington and LaSalle):
Emcees to include Tom Hickey and Ronni Newton from WHMedia, representing West Hartford Magazine, We-Ha.com and the CT Jewish Ledger.
5 to 5:15 p.m. Santa arrives by Fire Truck at The Toy Chest
5 to 5:30 Exclusive Furs Fashion Show by Ramon, Hair and Make-up by Blue Mercury (1 lucky member of the crowd will be selected for a live make-over)
5:30 to 5:45 p.m. Hartford City Ballet
5:45 to 6 p.m. Hall High School Choraliers
6 to 6:30 p.m. Arthur Murray Dancers
6:30 to 6:50 p.m. Sound of New England Chorus
6:50 to 7:05 p.m. Be S#arp a cappella group from Conard High School
7:10 to 7:25 p.m. CT Family Theater- 10-15 performers from 5th-12th grad
7:30 to 8:30 p.m. After Stroll includes Holiday Karaoke. FLOW (Future Leaders of West Hartford) will kick off the party with Holiday Karaoke hosted by Oh Snap Productions and featuring DJ Vince Berry. Ryan Keating of Keating Insurance says that anyone 16 years of age or older is welcome to join in on the fun. Thank you to Keating Insurance and WH Squared. Once the karaoke is over, all are encouraged to join FLOW at our new hotel, Delamar West Hartford, to toast marshmallows at the outdoor fire place on the patio.
Blue Back Square Stage:
5 to 5:15 Arthur Murray Dancers
5:15 to 5:30 p.m. Santa arrives in his bright red We-Ha convertible and tree lighting
6 to 6:15 p.m. Hartford Men in Harmony
6:15 to 6:30 p.m. Hartford City Ballet
6:30 to 7 p.m. Hall High School Choraliers
7 to 7:30 p.m. Sound of New England Chorus Strolling Entertainment
Also in the Blue Back Square Stage area, from 5-7 p.m., the West Hartford Human Rights Commission will be commemorating World Aids Day and will be distributing red ribbons as well as information about HIV/AIDS and HIV testing facilities.
Watch for the following special guests …
Hartford Wolf Pack mascot
Conard High School Jazz Combo to perform (location TBD)
Hartford Yard Goats Mascot
Petting Zoo by The Childrens Museum animal exhibit at Kaoud Rugs
Ballet Theater Company in the Farmington Bank windows
Hartt School Saxophone Ensemble Carolers at Nutmeg State Financial Credit Union
Tables throughout The Center & The Square featuring the Conard National Honor Society’s Bake Sale
Blue Back Dental, Hot Chocolate
West Hartford Little League
West Hartford Center Chick -fil-A coupons and samples
Mom’s Time Out mitten collection at BK & Co on Farmington Ave.
Hart Real Estate marshmallow roast at 1000 Farmington Ave.
West Hartford Festival of Trees, First Church at 12 South Main St.
Barbara Karsky is thrilled that again this year there will be a Holiday Decoration Contest – a new and improved version being coordinated by Shari from Matthew Phillips Salon. The Holiday Window Competition will be judged on three categories including: Best Holiday Window; Best Outdoor Holiday; and Best Holiday Wreath. Holiday Decoration Contest survey can be found here.
Stay tuned to we-ha.com this week for updates of all the fun events planned for the town’s 30th Anniversary Holiday Stroll … and the committee reminds me, you won’t have to rush home to get the kids to bed because it isn’t on a school night this year!