Xavier University kicks off the holiday season with its annual neighborhood celebration, A Xavier Christmas, by welcoming elementary school children to campus on Tuesday, Dec. 7. Around 180 students from Hoffman-Parham, Frederick Douglass, Sharpsburg, Williams, South Avondale and Norwood View schools are the special guests of the University as they are met and accompanied by their Xavier student buddies.
The children have an opportunity to meet Santa Claus, see a live nativity scene and take part in crafts and activities. Father Al Bischoff, S.J., joins the children at the Sally Watson tree for a special tree-lighting ceremony, while Xavier's newly formed men's a cappella group, Harmon-X, performs. The tree is beautifully decorated each year by Xavier’s physical plant staff.
Xavier faculty, students and staff have collected new hats and gloves to be distributed to the children. On the day of the event, all the children receive fleece scarves color-coordinated by school.
The evening schedule is:
2:30 p.m. Children arrive at Cintas Center for pizza and pictures with Santa.
4:00 p.m. Children and their Xavier student buddies play games and do crafts.
5:30 p.m. They visit the nativity scene featuring live animals on the greenspace near Bellarmine Chapel and enjoy cookies and hot chocolate.
6:00 p.m. The tree-lighting ceremony takes place at the entrance to the Gallagher Student Center.
6:30 p.m. Children depart.