News, On Campus

Tree Lighting Brings Holiday Spirit to BC Campus

Christmas has officially arrived on the Heights. In a night full of hot cocoa, carols, giveaways, and photo opportunities, Boston College’s annual Christmas tree lighting brought the holiday spirit to campus. 

“I’m just so excited because I like Christmas and BC is allowing me to really get into the Christmas spirit, even though finals are about to happen and there’s this impending doom,” Genna Goggins, MCAS ’24, said.

Students gathered outside on the O’Neill Plaza on Wednesday night to enjoy the event, which was organized by the Campus Activities Board. The tree lighting was a highly anticipated event—offering students a night to escape their workloads ahead of finals. 

Eleanor Norberg, Lynch ’25, expressed her gratitude for the event. She said she believes the Christmas tree lighting was a much needed break. 

“I just think this is a great break from the stress of finals season,” she said. “I’m glad that it was put together for us.” 

As classes got out and the Quad filled, an electricity returned to campus that had been snuffed out in recent years due to COVID-19 limitations. Students were drawn to the excitement of games and giveaways, enduring the cold temperatures to enjoy sipping hot chocolate while listening to Christmas carols. 

Sophia Flotta, MCAS ’25, enjoyed the music and spirit that radiated campus during the event. 

“Walking through the Quad with the music, it just put a smile on my face,” Flotta said.

Performances from the Heightsmen and the Boston College Dynamics opened the night, offering entertainment to students before the official ceremony began. 

An inflatable slide offered students an opportunity to have fun and race their friends while waiting in line for a stuffed animal or t-shirt. 

CAB offered plenty of photo opportunities throughout the night, including standing within a snowglobe, posing with an ice sculpture of Gasson Hall, or sitting on Santa’s lap. Each of these attractions was a hit, drawing in crowds of people.

Eventually, the call of photo opportunities and games could no longer take students away from what they were really there for: the Christmas tree lighting. As a crowd gathered around the tree, University President Rev. William P. Leahy, S.J., addressed the crowd. 

“I am grateful to all of you for being here and joining in, for helping our community be strong in the midst of all the pressures that come from COVID-19,” Leahy said. 

Leahy explained how the tree lighting ceremony connects to BC’s mission.

We gather for this ceremony and it reminds us about the roots of Boston College, our heritage as a community of faith that is built around the belief in the saving mission of Christ and what we all share no matter what our faith is,” he said.

As the magic words “let there be light” echoed throughout the Heights, the tree lit up, calling a start to the holiday season. 

Featured Image by Caroline Cannon / For The Heights

December 5, 2021