Kansas City Kansas Community College’s oldest tradition returns this week, honoring the holiday season while raising funds for scholarships at the same time.
The 91st-Annual Candlelighting Ceremony is at 9 and 11 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 4, in the KCKCC Performing Arts Center. Classes will not be held during the 11 a.m. lighting, so that all personnel and students, who wish to, can participate in the program. However, the Jewell Center, KCKCC Library and all offices will be open during those hours to serve individuals who choose not to participate in the ceremony.
All classes that are scheduled to begin at noon will start 10 minutes after the program has ended to allow students and faculty to time to get to their classrooms.
“This is the only event that links the college to its rich long history,” said Linda Sutton, director of student activities at KCKCC. “It is a chance to celebrate the end of the semester and kickoff the holiday season. Years ago, it also served as a final recital for the bands and choirs.”
KCKCC faculty members started the Candlelighting Ceremony in 1923, the year KCKCC was founded. It remains the oldest tradition at KCKCC and serves as an opportunity for students, staff and faculty to celebrate the upcoming holiday season. During that first year, a collection was taken to fund student scholarships. This tradition has continued and over the years, more than $10,000 has been collected for student scholarships at KCKCC. Donations are free will, and members of the Student Senate will be at the doors to the performing arts center with red baskets to accept donations.
“This is a great way to support scholarships and the students who are performing,” Sutton said. “Annie Premis (a KCKCC alum) will also speak on her college experience at KCKCC and offer words of encouragement to current students. There are also many senior citizens who look forward to this event and have attended for many years.”
At both 9 and 11 a.m., the KCKCC bands and choirs as well as the theater students will perform. Premis will be the speaker at 11 a.m. There is no speaker at the 9 a.m. service. Each service will conclude with holiday carols and the lighting of the candles.
For more information on the Candlelighting Ceremony, contact Linda Sutton at 913-288-7652 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.