Sisters Pam and Susan Jones posed with their children and the Grinch at Snoqualmie’s holiday festival — an annual tradition for the two Snoqualmie Ridge families. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Sisters Pam and Susan Jones posed with their children and the Grinch at Snoqualmie’s holiday festival — an annual tradition for the two Snoqualmie Ridge families. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Lights, Santa, music: Snoqualmie ushers in holiday season with Saturday celebration

It wasn’t really the tree lighting everyone was waiting for Saturday evening in Snoqualmie’s Railroad Park, but the big guy coming to light it.

That turned out to be a good thing, since the tree, beautifully lit just before Santa’s arrival on a Snoqualmie Fire truck, seemed to be having technical issues.

Instead of lighting up at the end of the countdown, on cue, the tree lights flickered and dimmed for a minute or so, to the cheers, groans, and overall amusement of the crowd, then finally burned brightly.

The minor, but entertaining problem was caused by a timer and speaker miscommunication, city staff said. The light show at the city park is set to a holiday music playlist looping on FM 89.9, which drivers can hear in their cars up to 500 feet away.

Santa set up shop in the Railroad Park gazebo to meet dozens of waiting children, and to pose for photos.

By then, it was time for many families, worn out from a turn on the skating rink, horse-drawn wagon rides, and jostling for a spot to see and hear the elementary school choirs perform, to go home, or head for the cover of Railroad Park, for some holiday music, plus a sing-along, with the Sno Valley Winds.

Shyloh, 5, and Dana Gottfried change back into their shoes after a pre-tree lighting skate in downtown Snoqualmie. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Shyloh, 5, and Dana Gottfried change back into their shoes after a pre-tree lighting skate in downtown Snoqualmie. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Elves Eleanor Ward and Aeydan Liettla test out Snoqualmie’s skating rink Saturday, while they wait for their boss, Santa, to arrive. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Elves Eleanor Ward and Aeydan Liettla test out Snoqualmie’s skating rink Saturday, while they wait for their boss, Santa, to arrive. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

A growing crowd gathered around the Sno-Valley Winds performance Saturday evening at Snoqualmie’s holiday festival. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

A growing crowd gathered around the Sno-Valley Winds performance Saturday evening at Snoqualmie’s holiday festival. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Using a bullhorn to be heard over his adoring fans, Santa Claus led the countdown to the city’s official tree lighting. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)
                                Using a bullhorn to be heard over his adoring fans, Santa Claus led the countdown to the city’s official tree lighting. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Using a bullhorn to be heard over his adoring fans, Santa Claus led the countdown to the city’s official tree lighting. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo) Using a bullhorn to be heard over his adoring fans, Santa Claus led the countdown to the city’s official tree lighting. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Santa sat with children and posed for photos in the gazebo at Railroad Park after the tree lighting. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Santa sat with children and posed for photos in the gazebo at Railroad Park after the tree lighting. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Far left: Chris Schniegenberg helps his son, Carter, balance on skates.
                                Left above: Elves Eleanor Ward and Aeydan Liettla test out Snoqualmie’s skating rink Saturday, while they wait for their boss, Santa, to arrive.
                                Left below: A growing crowd gathered around the Sno-Valley Winds performance Saturday evening at Snoqualmie’s holiday festival. 
                                Staff photos by Carol Ladwig

Far left: Chris Schniegenberg helps his son, Carter, balance on skates. Left above: Elves Eleanor Ward and Aeydan Liettla test out Snoqualmie’s skating rink Saturday, while they wait for their boss, Santa, to arrive. Left below: A growing crowd gathered around the Sno-Valley Winds performance Saturday evening at Snoqualmie’s holiday festival. Staff photos by Carol Ladwig

Belgian horses pulled wagonloads of holiday revelers Saturday during Snoqualmie’s annual holiday festival. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Belgian horses pulled wagonloads of holiday revelers Saturday during Snoqualmie’s annual holiday festival. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

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