The second annual Seton Hall Christmas tree lighting ceremony took place at 6 p.m. on the campus green in front of Presidents Hall on Thursday, Dec. 1.
The event was co-hosted by Winston Roberts, assistant dean of students, and Mariel Pagan, assistant director for greek life, clubs & organizations.
Special guests included Alex Torpey, mayor of South Orange Village, and Village Trustee Deborah Davis-Ford.
The Seminary and student choirs as well as the Filipino League at Seton Hall performed several Christmas songs.
Msgr. Thomas Nydegger blessed the campus Christmas tree, and University President A. Gabriel Esteban announced the countdown to light the tree.
The switch to light the tree was activated by Bob Windrem, Seton Hall alumni of 1968 and former senior investigative producer at MSNBC.
“As are traditions, this was terrific,” Windrem said. “I’m very happy to see the big turnout.”
The first 500 students who arrived at the ceremony received blue and white Santa hats.
Roberts informed the guests that those who donate blood between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Saturday Dec. 10 will receive an exclusive Seton Hall rugby scarf that reads “true pirates bleed blue.”
Roberts also said that the first 300 guests to arrive at the Ice Skating at Seton Hall event will receive exclusive Santa-themed pirate gloves, and some blue Santa hats are still available to those who donate to the DOVE toy drive.
Windrem called the ceremony a “great community spirit builder,” and reflected on how his time at Seton Hall was a very different experience with mostly commuter students.
“This was a great honor,” Windrem said. “As an alumni, you don’t come back often, so this was particularly positive and thrilling.”
Charlotte Lewis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.