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Tradition again comes alive in a night of music
First Baptist Churchs Living Tree event concludes Sunday
Harris Blackwood, a choir member, narrates in between songs Saturday during the 12th annual Living Christmas Tree ceremony at the First Baptist Church in Gainesville. - photo by SARA GUEVARA

Living Christmas Tree

When: 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 11

Where: First Baptist Church of Gainesville, 751 Green Street NW

How much: Free

More info: 770-534-7354

A holiday tradition continues this weekend with First Baptist Church's 12th annual Living Christmas Tree.

At Saturday's performance, the orchestra sat before a massive tree decorated with members of the church choir. The choir performed a medley of tradition Christmas songs, accompanied by flashing lights on the tree and an interpretive dance.

Narrator Harris Blackwood shared a rendition of the nativity story, re-enacted by members of the congregation.

Jane Smith thinks the 12th performance was the best she's seen yet.

"It really puts you in the Christmas spirit. It is Christmas," Smith said.

"The music, the feel, the excitement. It's the perfect way to kick off the Christmas season."

For Don and Joy Bolt, the Living Christmas Tree will soon be a family tradition.

"I would recommend it to anyone," Don Bolt said.

"The orchestra blew me away," said Joy Bolt. "I want to bring my mom back. The depth of talent was just amazing. I had no idea they did this to this extent."

The 17-song performance dazzled adults and children alike. For Joy Bolt, it was tough to pick a favorite.

"My favorite number was their version of ‘We Three Kings.' It was the most dramatic version I've ever heard," she said.

The evening concluded with a special presentation by Gov. Nathan Deal of an honorary doctorate to the Rev. Mark Green.

The Living Christmas Tree will hold its final two performances Sunday at 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Attendance is free.