By Lindsay Schaefer
Family and friends gather to observe Christmas all around the world by celebrating the holiday in many different ways.
At UMHB, students highlight Christmas with special programs and activities during the holiday season.
One of the first events was Crusader Christmas Dec. 4 with the lighting of the Luther Memorial.
Students watched the movie Elf, drank hot chocolate, ate Christmas cookies and took pictures with Santa.
Each of the women’s dorms hosted a mother-daughter weekend. They had dessert parties, Christmas caroling, various activities and games.
Friday night, several male students added to the festivities by singing “Christmas Grams” to the students and moms, starting in Burt Hall.
After a calm breakfast together, Saturday was left open for mothers and daughters to go Christmas shopping, watch a movie or participate in any other activity.
To continue the Christmas spirit, the music department presented Jewels of the Season, its annual Choral Christmas Gala at First Baptist Church Belton.
The night included many traditional Christmas carols such as “Joy to the World,” “Deck the Halls” and “Hark the Herald Angels Sing.” The choir also sang Assistant Professor of music Matt Crosby’s special arrangement of “Jingle Bells.”
Tonight, the UMHB Instrumental Christmas Concert will be presented in the Mayborn Campus Center Arena at 7 p.m. It will offer a compilation of pieces by The Conservatory of Music Suzuki Groups and The Bell County Symphonic Band.
The traditional pancake supper for students will take place Dec. 11 at 9 p.m. in Hardy Hall. Faculty and staff will serve the breakfast food to students.
In the small town of Salado, the Christmas season is altered into a winter wonderland. Hundreds of lights hang from all the local businesses, and shopping and seasonal music are available.
Locally there is the Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area present, Nature in Lights XII: A Holiday Tradition.
This includes five miles of Christmas cheer for all to enjoy. For every car, mini-van and pick-up there is a $5 charge.
Wrapping up the season, the College of Visual and Performing Arts recorded “Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol,” to air on KNCT radio, 91.3 FM.
It will be broadcast on Christmas Eve at 7 p.m. and Christmas Day at 10 a.m.