"Stuff Biola Likes": the annual Christmas Tree Lighting
Between 2,500-3,000 people attended the annual Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony, on Friday, Dec. 2. The event encompassed Christmas ornament and cookie decorating, art, music, and a flurry of snow to conclude. | Ashley Jones/THE CHIMES
When given the choice between participating in the annual Christmas Tree Lighting or studying for finals, 93 percent of students opted for the lighting ceremony. Several math majors around campus have confirmed this to be a majority. This event is therefore a fitting subject for the introductory article of the Chimes’ newest column, a witty and lighthearted look at some of our campus quirks entitled “Stuff Biola Likes.”
Since its inception in 1985, the Christmas Tree Lighting has been an annual grind for the two grounds workers who spend 48 hours decorating it with more than 2,000 lights and 150 ornaments. Similarly, many students view the entire “celebration” as an ironic campus wide mourning in which many students lament the fact that Facebook, caffeine and study guides must soon take the place of that nightly pleasure known as sleep.
“It is as if the alumni must have forgotten to schedule Christmas earlier in the semester,” one student complained. Or at least that is what I think he said. It was difficult to hear him over “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel,” a Biola favorite that has been sung in 16 different chapels since Thanksgiving.
Despite the hesitancy of some, the lighting continues to be a popular Biola tradition, in which those students not completely distracted by their coursework take great pride. In fact, there were almost 600 status updates related to the event, all of which were slight variants of “I am in a blizzard of fake snow,” or, “Christmas in SoCal feels like the Fourth of July in Mexico.” Sadly, the information provided by these updates allowed the laptop thief to steal another dozen computers, all of which were Macs. When asked why she only stole Macs, the laptop thief responded by saying that “taking someone’s PC would be like taking out their trash. Why would I do that? I am a thief, not a charity.”
Even despite the missing laptops, the annual Christmas tree lighting was an undeniable success that could have only been improved if the candles didn’t look like they were stolen from DBC’s 50th birthday cake or if the angel atop the tree was dressed in plaid.