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Brentwood Borough ready to kick off holiday season

| Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, 8:56 p.m.

Brentwood will kick off the holiday season on Tuesday with a tree-lighting ceremony, parade and appearances by Santa and Mrs. Claus.

“When you see those kids sitting on Santa's lap, it's awesome,” said Mary Halerz, Brentwood Business Owners Association vice president and owner of Dr. Drain Plumbing. “It just really kicks off the holiday season.”

The Brentwood Business Owners Association will host its 10th annual Light-up Night on Tuesday at 5 p.m. on Brownsville Road near Brentwood Towne Square. The tree lighting will take place at 6 p.m., following the parade.

More than 1,000 people are expected to attend the event.

“Every year, we try to grow bigger and bigger,” Halerz said. “It's a great family event.”

Other highlights of the event include photos with Santa, a story time with Mrs. Claus, a live nativity, children's scavenger hunt and Chinese auction, as well as food, drink and goods vendors.

Light-Up Night is one of several BBOA events throughout the year that showcases different business districts throughout the borough. Those holiday celebrations are important for the BBOA because they showcase businesses that may not have store fronts but will set up booths for each event, Halerz said.

“It gets all types of businesses out and into the community,” Halerz said.

The tree will be donated this year by Barbara Bates, a Villawood Avenue resident. Bates said she offered the tree several months ago and it was chosen from several.

“It's a really nice tree,” Bates said. “I think it'll be wonderful. I hope people think it's as beautiful as I do.”

Several residents each year offer to donate trees for the event because the borough then receives a free tree and the residents, many of whom admit the trees are no longer manageable for their property, don't have to pay to have them removed, said Mary Lou Garase, borough secretary.

Bates said she offered her tree because it is beautiful, but also because if it grows larger, it will affect her neighbor's property.

“We have people calling every year,” Garase said. “It saves us from purchasing a tree and they have someone cut down theirs. It's a win-win situation.”

For more information about the BBOA's Light-Up Night, go to

Laura Van Wert is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5814 or at

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