By: Michelle Gladden -

Hundreds gathered Saturday for the annual tree lighting ceremony in the Grand Arcade at Convention Hall on Saturday.

The event, which was streamed live, featured an appearance from Santa and array of live entertainment, including Nicole Atkins, holiday beach sounds of Uke and Drum, DJ Atom Worth and DJ Foggy Notion spinning Christmas classics, Kristian Rex and The St. Nick’s bringing classic Beach Boy sounds, and master of ceremonies Rich Robinson of 90.5 The Night.
Madison Marquette spokesman Adam Nelson said 1,400 regulated, by the Asbury Park Police and Fire departments, attended the 10th annual event.

Keeping in the spirit of the holidays there are few other ceremonies on the calendar. They include:
6:30 p.m. Thursday, is the Inaugural Fire Escape Lighting at Paranormal Books & Curiosities, located at 618 Mattison Ave.
5:30 p.m. Friday is the Tree Lighting Ceremony in Fireman’s Park, located at 1305 Main St.
5:45 p.m. Saturday is the Press Plaza Lighting Ceremony, located at Cookman Avenue and Emory Street – watch out for the Krampuses.

And at 5 p.m. Dec 9, the Springwood Avenue Park Tree Lighting Ceremony kicks off. The park is located on Springwood Avenue, between Atkins and Union avenues.
Next weekend marks the return of Krampus, the devilish anti St. Nick born from 15th century German and Austrian folklore. Celebrity Ghost Hunters Adam Berry & Amy Bruni will be the featured guests. For a full lineup, click here.

Holiday bazaars, featuring artisan vendors and live entertainment continue:
Styled after the traditional Weihnachtsmarkts of Nuremberg, Germany, the Asbury Park Holiday Bazaar runs from noon to 5 p.m. Sat and Sun, Dec 2 & 3 and 9 & 10 in the Grand Arcade and Convention Hall; Sun, Dec 17 in the Grand Arcade; and Sat, Dec 23 is a last minute shopper’s bazaar in the Grand Arcade.

Downtown the Asbury Festhalle & Biergarten’s Weihnachtsmarkts runs from noon to 7 p.m. [weather permitting] Sat and Sun, Dec 2 & 3 and 9 & 10, 16 & 17, and 23 on the roof of the 527 Lake Avenue venue. Pictures with Santa from 2 to 5 p.m. help support the Asbury Park Toy Drive.

And, from the Asbury Fresh team comes Winter Market, featuring 40 local artisans and farms, running noon to 5 p.m. Sat and Sun through Dec. 23 at the Asbury Park Brewery, located at 810 Sewall Ave.

Free metered parking continues in all zones noon to 6 p.m. Saturdays from Nov. 25 to Dec. 23; and all day Dec 25 and Jan 1.

Asbury Park Now