Night of Lights
On a Sunday evening in December, our Watts Hospital-Hillandale Neighborhood Association celebrates the Annual Night of Lights! Every year our neighborhood sparkles with thousands of glowing candles.
Watts-Hillandale has a spirited history of celebrating the holidays by lining our streets with luminaries, brightening our neighborhood with the warming glow of candlelight. This tradition began back in 1985 by Caron Mayo, then vice president of WHHNA, and a cheerful group of volunteers. Ever since, we’ve come together in unity to stroll our streets in the brisk winter air, joining groups of carolers as we host open homes and parties.
Our 34th celebration marks a first for us and we’re excited to share that Old West Durham’s neighborhood will be joining us in this year’s event. With more neighbors lining the streets with luminaries, we are sure to have the biggest and brightest Night of Lights evening yet!
This year’s Night of Lights is on Sunday, Dec. 15th. In the unlikely event that we get rain, we’ll celebrate on Wednesday, December 18th.
Luminaria supplies will be on sale at the southern end of the Oval Park at the picnic shelter on December 14th and 15th from 12 to 5 pm. On Sunday, we’ll be selling until we either sell out or until 5:45 pm. Luminary kits are sold in sets of 10 for $5, or you may purchase individual/additional sets for $0.50 each. To help reduce waste, please bring a bucket, pail or reusable bag to fill up with sand.
Night of Lights is not just a Watts-Hillandale tradition. Through the InterNeighborhood Council, member neighborhoods coordinate their Night of Lights celebrations. Our Night of Lights Celebration is not affiliated with or symbolic of any one religion or ideology. We simply want to mark the age old tradition that so many countries and cultures have noted for millennia: that light in the dark of winter can give hope and joy. If you are new to our neighborhood, this is a wonderful way to meet your neighbors and spread some joy in our community.
Our Night of Lights celebration is also the time of year when we come together to collect donations for our neighbors in need at the Community Café.
This year, the Community Café is in need of some particular pantry items as we near the holiday season—coffee, tea, sugar and creamer to help warm up in the mornings—pancake mix, syrup and canned fruit to start the day off right—and canned soups, mac ‘n cheese and canned vegetables to end the day with a comforting meal. Of course, canned meats, pantry staples like paper plates, towels and napkins, and condiments would all be very helpful to our neighbors in need. This year the Community Café would like us to know they also accept donations of warm winter wear—gloves, hats and coats, too.
When you stop by Oval Park for supplies, drop off your gift of canned goods and money for the Community Café. You can also renew your membership, too, getting you a free luminaria kit. Members that have already renewed for 2019-2020 get one free set!
To make this year’s event successful, we need lots of volunteers- helping set up, selling luminaria, passing out sand, dropping off old plastic bags for sand—we have lots of opportunities to get involved! If the weather is chilly enough, we may seek out volunteers to swing by with hot chocolate, or to lend us some thermoses.
Night of Lights 2019
December 15th: Dusk until the candles burn out ~ 11:00 pm (Rain date Wednesday 12/18/19.)
Let’s join together to share in the glow of warming light! This year marks the 34th anniversary of our neighborhood’s Night of Lights luminaria display. We need 100% participation to make Watts-Hillandale sparkle with lights. Help make your street the brightest in the neighborhood. Everything you need — bags, candles, and sand (it is helpful if you bring a bag or pail to carry your sand home) — will be on sale at the picnic shelter at the south end of Oval Park on Saturday, December 14, and Sunday, December 15, from noon until 5 p.m. Supplies for each luminaria still cost just 50 cents. What a deal! Association members get a bonus luminaria! Not yet a member for 2019-2020? You can easily join or renew at this same time; cost is still $5 per person.
Contact Heather Gudac (919-696-4535) or email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in volunteering to sell luminaries Or just go to the Sign-up Genius site here to choose a day and time.
Our Night of Lights Celebration is not affiliated with or symbolic of any one religion or ideology. We simply want to mark the age old tradition that so many countries and cultures have noted for millennia: that light in the dark of winter can give hope and joy .
updated 11/29/19 hg