WILLISTON, N.D. (KXNET) — The Williston community is invited to join a holiday tradition.

According to a news release, the annual lighting of the Community Christmas Tree is taking place on November 27 at 5:30 p.m.

Every year, a tree is chosen from a list of homeowners who have chosen to donate their tree, and this year’s tree was donated by Jackie and Jason Peles.

It’s a Colorado Spruce that’s about 50 feet tall and weighs around 8,000 pounds. It was removed on November 14 to its current spot on the corner of 26th Street E and 2nd Avenue W.

The Peles’ were able to watch the tree get harvested along with JoAnne Colebank and family. Colebank’s father originally planted the tree in the early 80s.

“It’s pretty exciting,” Jason said. “Especially being able to meet the people that actually planted the tree. JoAnne actually knew my grandparents, so this has kids of brought us all together.”

JoAnne’s husband, Wayne, said it was bittersweet watching the tree come down, but they are honored to share it with the community.

“It’s really neat that everybody gets to see it and enjoy it,” Wayne said. “We’ve got a lot of memories there, we watched that tree grow for 15 years. We were very happy when we heard.”

Along with the tree lighting, there will be a bonfire, refreshments, holiday music, and a fireworks show. Afterward, there will be a short ceremony with remarks from Mayor Howard Klug, and Dallas Peles will officially light the tree.

The community is also being invited to join in the third annual Community Christmas Tree Ornament Contest.

People are encouraged to be creative and make their best ornament to hang on the tree for a chance to win a prize.

The contest is open to all ages with these age groups: six and under, seven to 10, 11-14, and 15 and older.

From Monday, November 27 until Friday, December 8, people can put their ornaments on the tree, but there are some rules to follow in order to successfully enter the contest:

  • Take a picture of their ornament on the Community Christmas Tree OR a picture of them placing it on the tree.
  • Sumit photos on Facebook Messenger to the City of Williston OR the Williston Community Library OR email communications@ci.williston.nd.us.
  • Include their name and age, and a name for the ornament.
  • Place their ornament before December 8.

There will be two winners from each age group and they will be chosen on Monday, December 11, and then announced that week. All submissions all be posted on the City of Williston’s Facebook and Instagram pages.

Remember, these will be outside, so make sure they will withstand the elements if you want them back.

A future date will be provided for anyone who would like to have their ornament back. The Christmas Tree will be up until the end of December.

People are invited to put ornaments on the tree, even without participating in the contest.