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Grand Ole Christmas, Ole Miss Tree Lighting Set Festive Holiday Mood

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The Grand Ole Christmas festivities are set to take place on Dec. 4.

Tree lighting, ice skating, card making and story reading provide holiday cheer for community

OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi soon will be transformed for the holidays. The lighting of the campus Christmas tree and a Grand Ole Christmas will take place Wednesday (Dec. 4) with activities in and around the Student Union. All events are free and open to the public.

“The Student Activities Association takes pride in planning these events for the entire L-O-U community,” said Bradley Baker, director of the Ole Miss Student Union. “We look forward to welcoming students, faculty, staff and members of our extended Ole Miss family to this year’s events. It is an exciting time for us.”

At 6 p.m., reigning Miss University Anna Beth Higginbotham will join the UM Gospel Choir, Chancellor Dan Jones and Brandi Hephner LeBanc, UM vice chancellor of student affairs, for the lighting of the Ole Miss Christmas tree. The lighting is set in the University Circle in front of the Lyceum.

The tree is a Leyland cypress from Shade Tree Transplanting Co. in Banner. The lighting is sponsored by UM Division of Student Affairs, Ole Miss Student Union and the Student Activities Association.

In its sixth year, a Grand Ole Christmas will welcome families and students from 6 to 10 p.m. An event favorite, ice skating, will take place in a rink built on the labyrinth outside the Union. Attendees will have an opportunity to have pictures made with Santa and his special helpers in the Union Lobby. Throughout the evening, attendees can make their own Christmas cards and holiday crafts, which they can keep or donate for delivery to the Graceland Care Center in Oxford.

Members of the Ole Miss hockey team will host a meet-and-greet, where they will sign autographs and welcome fans at 6 p.m. on the Union Plaza. The UM Gospel Choir will also perform on the plaza. Inside, Higginbotham and Homecoming Queen Megan McBeth will read several Christmas stories at 7:30 p.m. Christmas karaoke and a movie series featuring “Elf” are also part of the festivities.

Everyone is invited to enjoy free hot chocolate and cookies throughout the night. Grand Ole Christmas is sponsored by Ole Miss Student Union, Student Activities Association and Papa John’s Pizza.

For more information or for assistance related to a disability, contact the UM Student Activities Association at 662-915-1044.

–Sharon Morris, Ole Miss Communications

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