Living Christmas Tree rehearsals set

Practice won't just get you to the world famous Carnegie Hall, as local vocalists look to raise their voices and holiday spirits for the upcoming Living Christmas Tree with rehearsals slated Saturday morning and afternoon.According to Program Coordinator Eddie Vandewalker, this year's presentation of the Living Christmas Tree will mark the 32nd year the event has been a part of the holiday tradition in the Crossroads area.“We've had as many as 100 singers participate in the Living Christmas Tree program since we started 31 years ago,” Vandewalker said. “The last two or three years we've had between 70 and 75 singers participate. Right now, we're not quite at that level, so we're really hoping area vocalists will sign up and be part of this Big Spring tradition.”Vandewalker said Saturday's practice — which will be held at First United Methodist Church, the same site used for the final performances in December — will be held from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.“Lunch will be provided,” he said. “This will give us a chance to really work hard on the arrangements and Christmas carols we'll be performing. Then, every evening of the week leading up to the Dec. 4 and 5 performances, we'll be practicing.”Vandewalker said he's excited with some of the new faces that will be taking part in the annual event.“The varsity choir from Big Spring High School will be participating in this year's Living Christmas Tree, as will the junior varsity choir,” Vandewalker said. “They will be singing, as will several other groups. It's a little bit different than what we've done in the past and everyone seems really excited about the addition. I know I certainly am.”Vandewalker said performances will begin with a formal dress rehearsal at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4, which will be open to the public.