High Point University Welcomes 15,000 for Night One of its Annual Community Christmas Celebration
HIGH POINT, N.C., Dec. 12, 2019 – High Point University kicked off night one of its ninth annual Community Christmas Celebration, celebrating the sights and sounds of the holiday season with 15,000 friends and neighbors. Night two will be held on campus Friday, Dec. 13 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and will feature complimentary entertainment, hot food, Christmas decorations and more.
PHOTO ABOVE -High Point University President Nido Qubein (right) greeted children in the line to see Santa Claus during tonight’s Community Christmas Celebration.
From families attending for the first time to those who come every year, members of the community came out to enjoy this special event, including High Point resident Mariana Gonzalez, who came with her husband and five children.
“This is our first time attending Community Christmas,” said Gonzalez. “We are looking forward to seeing Santa and having fun as a family.”
Others like High Point resident Scott Wilhelm, Heather Blackerby and Kristin Bogs are Community Christmas veterans.
“I grew up in High Point, I’ve seen the university grow, and I’ve seen this event grow,” said Wilhelm. “The university has done a good job putting this event together, and I enjoy it because it brings people from all walks of life together. You don’t see that very often.”
For those who come each year, they have a plan mapped out before they even arrive.
“We come every year, our kids look forward to it and it has become a tradition for us,” said Blackerby. “We hopped on the train as soon as we got here tonight.”
For others, HPU is a symbol of the holidays – and Santa.
“Every time we pass by HPU, the kids point and say that’s where Santa lives,” said Bogs. “I think it’s amazing that HPU does this for the community, all the details and everything they put into it.”
Each year, the university welcomes community members while 3,500 faculty, staff and students volunteer to make the event possible.
“This is our ninth year doing Community Christmas. If you are a family who has been coming here for nine years you can line the photos up from the Nativity scene and watch your children grow up in this setting,” said Preston Davis, minister at HPU. “It’s a time capsule, and it’s done with HPU as its backdrop.”
Free and open to all ages, HPU’s Community Christmas Celebration has grown into the premier complimentary Christmas celebration in the Piedmont Triad.
“HPU is a God, family and country school,” said HPU President Nido Qubein. “We thank God for our many blessings, including that we live in America and are able to celebrate this season of joy and faith and the birth of Jesus Christ together as a community.”
Regardless of Friday’s potential for rain, HPU’s Community Christmas Celebration will continue. Indoor events on Friday include a photo and gift for children who visit Santa inside the Slane Student Center, complimentary hot chocolate and hot dogs at the Holly Jolly Hot Dog Shoppe, robotics activities in the Crafty Elf Lego Workshop, live Santa tracking in Congdon Hall’s Culp Planetarium, arcade games, musical performances and surprise visits from Anna and Elsa of “Frozen.”
At High Point University, every student receives an extraordinary education in an inspiring environment with caring people.® HPU, located in the Piedmont Triad region of North Carolina, is a liberal arts institution with 5,400 undergraduate and graduate students. It is ranked No. 1 by U.S. News and World Report for Best Regional Colleges in the South, No. 1 for Most Innovative Regional Colleges in the South and No. 1 for Best Undergraduate Teaching in the South. The Princeton Review named HPU in the 2020 edition of “The Best 385 Colleges” and on the Best Southeastern Colleges “2020 Best Colleges: Region by Region” list. HPU was recognized as a Great School for Business Majors and a Great School for Communication Majors. HPU was also recognized for Most Beautiful Campus (No. 18), Best College Dorms (No. 5) and Best Campus Food (No. 20). For nine years in a row, HPU has been named a College of Distinction with special recognition for business and education programs and career development, and The National Council on Teacher Quality ranks HPU’s elementary education program as one of the best in the nation. The university offers 60 undergraduate majors, 64 undergraduate minors and 13 graduate degree programs. It is a member of the NCAA, Division I and the Big South Conference. Visit High Point University on the web at highpoint.edu.