Arts & Culture Community

Lighting of Iconic Blue Trellis Kicks Off Holiday Season With Friends of Christopher Columbus Park [Photos]

“Blue Lights” Trellis at Christopher Columbus Park with Custom House Tower

The Friends of Christopher Columbus Park (FOCCP) kicked off the holiday season with their traditional annual lighting of the park’s signature trellises on Monday, November 21st. Local businesses and neighbors support the efforts of FOCCP, the all-volunteer neighborhood organization, to raise the funds needed to illuminate the trellis and 14 trees annually. Mayor Martin J. Walsh presided over the trellis lighting ceremony, along with Boston Parks Commissioner Chris Cook.

Flipping the switch on the trellis lights, (L-R) City Councilor Annissa Essaibi George, City Councilor Sal LaMattina, Santa Claus, Mayor Marty Walsh, FOCCP President Joanne Hayes-Rines, Senator Joe Boncore and Representative Aaron Michlewitz

Santa Claus, Frosty and Rudolph the Reindeer welcomed attendees. Students and teachers of the North End Music and Performing Arts Center (NEMPAC) and Sharon Zeffiro sang holiday songs. The Marriott Long Wharf Hotel, Joe’s American Bar & Grill, Starbucks and Magic 106.7 provided refreshments and holiday treats.

Holiday celebration crowd at Christopher Columbus Park for the annual trellis lighting

“The Trellis Lighting Ceremony is the culmination of our year-long celebration of FOCCP’S 15thanniversary,” says FOCCP President Joanne Hayes-Rines. “Every year it is thrilling to watch the park transform into a winter wonderland when the trellis is illuminated, and we’re delighted that Mayor Walsh will throw the switch again this year.”

Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh speaks to the crowd at the trellis lighting

The Platinum Level corporate sponsors for this year’s trellis and tree lighting are CL Properties, and Sanibel Electrical Corporation. Sanibel Electrical has generously donated the cost of installation of the trellis lights. Gold Level sponsors are Boston Harbor Cruises, Boston Harbor Hotel, Boston PushCart, Capitol One, Joe’s American Bar & Grill, Marriott Long Wharf Boston, and Tia’s Waterfront.

Political trifecta, (L-R) Sen. Joe Boncore, Councilor Sal LaMattina and Rep. Aaron Michlewitz

“This year we celebrated our first 15 years by adding several special events to our regular event program, including yoga classes, a dance party and a very special 15th Anniversary Party,” says Hayes-Rines. “None of these events would have been possible without the generosity of our members, both private and corporate, in Boston and outside the city, who help us fund these efforts. We have been one of the most successful Friends groups to support a city park, and we truly appreciate everyone’s help and continued donations.”

Trellis with blue and white holiday lights

The Friends of Christopher Columbus Park (FOCCP) is an all-volunteer non-profit organization comprised of North End and Waterfront neighbors whose purpose is to further the restoration, protection, preservation, care, enhancement, improvement, and maintenance of the Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park. The FOCCP works closely with the City of Boston Parks and Recreation Department to keep the park clean and well maintained, and with other city and state organizations to improve the park to enrich the lives of both residents and visitors to Boston.

FOCCP President Joanne Hayes-Rines speaks at the trellis lighting
U.S. Post Office Holiday Stamp Unveiling
Under the blue light trellis toward the Columbus statue
NEMPAC youth singers perform at the trellis lighting
The man behind the lights, Steve Mirabella, with friends
Blue lights trellis at Christopher Columbus Park with Custom House
Bad Santa 2
Characters at the trellis lighting celebration
Holiday singer at the celebration for the annual trellis lighting
NEMPAC musical performers
From the Marriott Long Wharf, serving up hot cocoa
North End revelers at the trellis lighting
Sharon Zeffiro performs at the trellis lighting celebration
Hot clam chowda on a chilly night, thanks to Joe’s American Bar & Grill
NEMPAC performers
FOCCP’s Mary and Meghan
Bundled kids at the trellis lighting
NEMPAC Executive Director Sherri Snow
Frosty spins the Mix 106.7 wheel
Parks Commissioner Extraordinaire, Chris Cook
Youth singers from NEMPAC
Greetings with Santa

Trellis at Christopher Columbus Park lit with its iconic blue and white lights

Photos by Matt Conti