Hay ride replaces train ride at Ada holiday celebration - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Hay ride replaces train ride at Ada holiday celebration

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Ada's Wintersmith Park holiday lights display will be missing something in 2018. (KTEN) Ada's Wintersmith Park holiday lights display will be missing something in 2018. (KTEN)
The tracks for the Polar Express ride in Wintersmith Park were washed out by heavy rain. (KTEN) The tracks for the Polar Express ride in Wintersmith Park were washed out by heavy rain. (KTEN)

ADA,. Okla. -- Christmas lights have brightened Wintersmith Park in Ada since the 1990s.

This year, public information director Lisa Bratcher says a campaign was launched to make the Trail of Lights bigger and better than ever.

"We asked for sponsors to come up and pick a display they might want to sponsor," she explained. "They get their sign and name on it and everything. Well, $250,000 later, we had an amazing array of displays to put up in the park."

Each year, a team of people is hired to set up the lights, something that takes a monumental effort to accomplish.

"That all starts in early October," Bratcher said. "They're literally working up to the second that we turn them on the Monday before Thanksgiving. All those people also work tirelessly during the whole time they're on."

The Kiwanis Club of Ada has traditionally operated its "Polar Express" train through the park, giving visitors a ride to take in the lights. But that won't be possible this holiday season because heavy rains damaged the tracks.

But there is a backup plan.

"They're doing hayrides," Bratcher explained. "You meet them down by the Kiwanis booth and they'll have hot chocolate as well on the carousel. It's absolutely free of charge. They are pulling you on a tractor with a big trailer that has lights all over and hay. It's really neat."

There's still room for additional displays, which Bratcher urges everyone to come out and enjoy.

"If anybody wants to sponsor a light display, just contact the Ada Area Chamber of Commerce through the lights committee," she said. "Just come out and enjoy the lights. They're here for everybody."

The hay ride will be available every Saturday in December, and there's no admission. The Trail of Lights is open every night from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. through December 31.

The Kiwanis Club will accept donations that will be used to repair the Polar Express tracks for next year.

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