The Village of Horseheads celebrated its 25th annual Holly Days Saturday. The event is the official kick off for the holidays, but as our Vince Slomsky tells us, it almost never happened.
HORSEHEADS, N.Y. -- Dancing, food, and singing in Hanover Square. It must be that time of year again for the Horseheads Holly Days. The 25th annual celebration reminded everyone that the holidays are officially here.
“I think it's a great opportunity for the community to get together and get in the mood for Christmas," said Corning resident Don Dakoske.
"I think it's cool that we all can have some fun at celebrating the holidays," said eight year old Sean Davis.
With dozens of holiday themed vendors and all kinds of activities for all ages, it's become a family favorite tradition for the village each year.
"I think it's really fun because Christmas is a big holiday and I like it a lot," said eight year old Devin Flynn.
But this year's event almost never happened. The Chemung County Sunrise Rotary Club sponsors the event, and just three weeks ago didn't have enough money to put it together.
"Holly Days almost didn't happen because of the economy. Word got out that it might not happen. The village, my trustees, we all jumped in, we talked about it and all of a sudden the community came together, donations came in, people said 'we got to make this happen.' We did," said Don Zeigler, Horseheads Mayor.
The village and community members ended up donating the money needed to pay for the performance stages, and therefore keep the tradition alive.
"This is the 25th year and to have an event like this falter would really be a shame," said Darlene Ike, Co-Chair of the event.
"Traditions are what make Horseheads or any community. This is the tradition that will continue," said Zeigler.
All of the money raised by the Chemung County Sunrise Rotary Club from vendor fees will be used to benefit future rotary projects.