Del Rio Firefighter Ryan Root chauffeurs Sparky, the Del Rio Fire Department’s mascot, and the Hamburglar down South Main Street in the 2017 city Christmas Parade.

Two Christmas tree lighting ceremonies have been planned by the city for Thursday and Friday to help Del Rioans get into the holiday spirit.

The holiday festivities kick off Thursday, with a Christmas tree lighting program at the artificial tree outside the Del Rio Civic Center, 1915 Veterans Blvd.

As part of the holiday activities at the civic center, the city has arranged for a first-ever “cold weather” treat: a pop-up ice skating rink, said Assistant City Manager Esmeralda Meza.

The rink will be at the civic center from 2 p.m. Thursday through Sunday, Dec. 9. The skating fee is $8 per person, and there are time slots available every 30 minutes. Anyone who would like to reserve a time and date is asked to visit and make arrangements.

The rink’s times of operation will be as follows:

• 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday – Ages 5-55;

• 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday – Ages 18-55;

• 10 a.m. to noon Friday – Ages 5-12;

• Noon to 5 p.m. Friday – Ages 5-55;

• 9 p.m. to midnight Friday – Ages 5-55;

• 10 a.m. to noon Saturday – Ages 5-12;

• Noon to 10 p.m. Saturday – Ages 5-55;

• Noon to 9 p.m. Sunday – Ages 5-55; and

• 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday – Ages 18-55.

Thursday’s celebration will include a welcome by Del Rio Mayor Bruno “Ralphy” Lozano, Christmas carols and a sneak peek performance of a portion of “The Nutcracker” ballet.

The festivities continue Friday with the city’s annual Christmas parade on South Main Street at 6 p.m. The theme of this year’s parade is “For Unto Y’All Cowboy Christmas.”

Following the parade, the mayor will light the city Christmas tree at Greenwood Park.

“We invite all of Del Rio and surrounding areas to come join in on the holiday festivities. The parade kicks off at 6 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 7, on South Main Street. This year’s event is all about Cowboy Christmas! We will light the Greenwood Park tree shortly after with prizes for the best parade floats. The holidays are always a fun and joyful time of year. Join us and bring your family,” said Mayor Bruno “Ralphy” Lozano.

Thursday, Dec. 6

Del Rio Civic Center

1915 Veterans Blvd.

• 6:30 p.m. – Welcome by Mayor Bruno “Ralphy” Lozano; countdown to lighting the tree

• 6:35 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. – Christmas carols by Girl Scout Daisy and Brownie troop

• 6:45 p.m. to 7 p.m. – Del Rio Council for the Arts “The Nutcracker” ballet sneak peek performances; photo op with “The Nutcracker” cast after the performance

• 7:05 p.m. to 7:20 p.m. – Toxic Cheer performance

• 7:20 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. – Christmas carols by Clarissa Martinez

Friday, Dec. 7

Downtown Del Rio/Greenwood Park

An hour-and-a-half has been allotted for the completion of the parade, with the remainder of the night’s festivities scheduled to take place in Greenwood Park, located between Griner, Garfield and Greenwood streets in south Del Rio.

An invocation at the park will begin the night’s events at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 7.

Lozano will give the welcoming address and begin the countdown to the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree, sited in one corner of the park, which is scheduled to be lit at 7:45 p.m.

Winners of the Christmas parade will also be announced at that time.

Santa Claus will be on hand to give out candy and take photos from 7:40 p.m. to 9:40 p.m.

A number of local music groups are scheduled to perform holiday music during the event, including the following:

• 7:45 p.m. to 8 p.m. – Bibleway Academy Choir

• 8 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. – St. James Episcopal School Choir

• 8:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. – Sacred Heart Academy Choir

• 8:30 p.m. to 8:45 p.m. – SFDRCISD All-District Elementary School Choir

• 8:45 p.m. to 9 p.m. – Heritage Academy Choir

• 9 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. – SFDRCISD Show Choir

• 9:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. – Mariachi Rayos del Sol

• 10 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. – Del Rio High School Band

Assistant City Manager Esme Meza said there will be food and craft vendors will be sited along the edges of the park from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.

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