Last Friday marked the 50th anniversary of the lighting
of the World's Tallest Christmas Tree. Strands of lights were
hung from the Indianapolis War Memorial Monument
by volunteers from the International Brotherhood
of Electrical Workers. Around its base, thousands of spectators
gathered to watch the entertainment before the tree
was switched on by a young girl who had won a coloring contest.
Santa Claus, accompanied by assistants, Frosty the Snowman,
and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, strolled among the crowd,
visiting and posing for pictures with admirers of all ages.
Street peddlers, hawking light sabres, light sticks, and antlers decked
with flashing lights, wandered the crowd the entire evening.
The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department used
their mounted patrol to quietly keep watch over the throngs
of people. In recent years, the patrol has replaced
their earlier horses to improve their visibility at night,
so that they are all now white, roan, or gray.