‘Tis the season for celebrating in Camas

By Kelly Moyer

Staff reporter

CAMAS — With  its annual tree lighting countdown, fireworks display, visit from Santa and festivities throughout the downtown area, the annual Camas Hometown Holidays festival draws hundreds each year.

And the 2016 celebration, held Friday night, Dec. 2, was no exception. Families filled the streets of downtown Camas Friday evening, enjoying cups of hot cocoa, photos with Santa, holiday shopping, art shows, music by Camas students, crafts, hayrides and the chance to sit behind the wheel of a Camas Fire Department firetruck.

Tiffany Wooden, a teen from Troutdale (right) stops to meet Hamilton, the mascot of Unitus Credit Union, and Natalie Cook (left), a Unitus employee, at the annual Camas Hometown Holidays festival on Fri., Dec. 2, in downtown Camas. Unitus was one of the event sponsors for this year’s holiday celebration. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Tiffany Wooden, a teen from Troutdale (right) stops to meet Hamilton, the mascot of Unitus Credit Union, and Natalie Cook (left), a Unitus employee, at the annual Camas Hometown Holidays festival on Fri., Dec. 2, in downtown Camas. Unitus was one of the event sponsors for this year’s holiday celebration. Photo by Kelly Moyer

At 6:30 p.m., Camas Mayor Scott Higgins, wearing a Santa hat and his old, bright red Camas High letterman’s jacket in support of the state tournament-bound Camas football team, spoke to the crowd, which had gathered near the Liberty Theatre to see the town’s tree lighting.

Thanking Hometown Holidays’ many sponsors and organizers, Higgins reminded his community that Camas residents are lucky on many levels  — and therefore, know that they need to support other community members who aren’t so fortunate. Signs of the Camas community’s support of others was on full display this weekend — from the canned food drive to feed the hungry that is happening Sat., Dec. 3, to the collections local student musicians were taking up for the Red Cross at an event inside the Camas Gallery on Northeast 4th Ave.

Camas Mayor Scott Higgins speaks to a crowd gathered at the Camas Hometown Holidays celebration on Fri., Dec. 2, before the annual Camas holiday tree lighting ceremony. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Camas Mayor Scott Higgins speaks to a crowd gathered at the Camas Hometown Holidays celebration on Fri., Dec. 2, before the annual Camas holiday tree lighting ceremony. Photo by Kelly Moyer

Shortly after this, Higgins led the crowd in a 10-second countdown to the annual tree lighting and fireworks display.

If you missed out on the tree lighting, don’t worry, there are still more holiday events coming up in Camas, including the Thu., Dec. 8 Holiday Shop and Sip event, which includes caroling, holiday shopping, specialty drinks, raffles, prize packages, music, a tour of the new Mill Interpretive Center and a ride on the Double Decker bus for $25. The event is a fundraiser for Downtown Camas and you can purchase tickets at www.downtowncamas.com.

Camas students (from left to right) Jason Kim, 18, Sophia Hansen, 15, and Aaron Greene, 15, perform at the Camas Gallery in downtown Camas on Fri., Dec. 2, for the Camas Hometown Holidays celebration. The three teens are all members of the Portland Youth Philharmonic. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Camas students (from left to right) Jason Kim, 18, Sophia Hansen, 15, and Aaron Greene, 15, perform at the Camas Gallery in downtown Camas on Fri., Dec. 2, for the Camas Hometown Holidays celebration. The three teens are all members of the Portland Youth Philharmonic. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Aileen Hernandez, an employee at Liberty Theatre in downtown Camas, dressed up like a Who from Whoville, to celebrate the 2016 Camas Hometown Holidays celebration, held Fri., Dec. 2, in downtown Camas. The Liberty Theatre was showing the 2000 movie version of Dr. Seuss’ ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ during the holiday celebration. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Aileen Hernandez, an employee at Liberty Theatre in downtown Camas, dressed up like a Who from Whoville, to celebrate the 2016 Camas Hometown Holidays celebration, held Fri., Dec. 2, in downtown Camas. The Liberty Theatre was showing the 2000 movie version of Dr. Seuss’ ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ during the holiday celebration. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Camas musicians Jason Kim and Sophia Hansen (not pictured), both teen members of the Portland Youth Philharmonic and students at Camas High School, performed at Camas Gallery during the annual Camas Hometown Holidays celebration on Fri., Dec. 2, and raised money for Red Cross efforts in Sri Lanka. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Camas musicians Jason Kim and Sophia Hansen (not pictured), both teen members of the Portland Youth Philharmonic and students at Camas High School, performed at Camas Gallery during the annual Camas Hometown Holidays celebration on Fri., Dec. 2, and raised money for Red Cross efforts in Sri Lanka. Photo by Kelly Moyer
Hundreds gathered in downtown Camas on Fri., Dec. 2, to see the annual tree lighting, watch a short fireworks display and enjoy holiday-themed festivities.
Hundreds gathered in downtown Camas on Fri., Dec. 2, to see the annual tree lighting, watch a short fireworks display and enjoy holiday-themed festivities.
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About The Author

Joanna Nicole Yorke is a 2010 graduate of the Edward R. Murrow School of Communication at Washington State University in Pullman. She has a bachelor's degree in journalism with a minor in political science. Yorke is a Clark County native, growing up on her family's 12-acre farm in La Center where her family still resides today. She was previously a reporter at The Reflector Newspaper, covering the city of Battle Ground, the Battle Ground School District and a variety of other areas and topics.

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