Daniel Rivera, a United States Marine from 2002-2009, greeted the kids as they made personal holiday cards to be sent to soldiers overseas (photo attached). The outside tree was roughly 40 ft tall with about 8,000 lights. The tree was trimmed and the lights were strung by Walter Dryer's Tree Service (company located in Floral Park, LI).
Bravo Studios, located in Chelsea, Manhattan, supported the show by providing equipment and staff expertise. They loaned the event a 10,000 lumine projector (a $50,000 piece of equipment) for the interactive multimedia show.
"Beacon hosts events like Christmas Fest as a way of reaching our local communities and extending a helping hand towards those in need who are further away. There are no expectations or criteria- just an invitation to experience something new and an open door," said Pastor Robert Kelly.
Christmas Fest was also vehicle for charity. Beacon collaborated with Pay It Forward With Jackie to collect donated, filled stockings at the event -to be delivered to children in hospitals or homeless shelters throughout December. The small, volunteer run organization was co- founded by Joanna Delgado and Cyndi Poeggel. It was inspired by Cyndi’s young daughter, Jackie, after she was diagnosed with leukemia (AML), an adult form of leukemia not commonly seen in children.
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