Downtown ready to be lit in holiday style



Shoppers returning home from the first day of holiday shopping and boaters sailing through the Port of Washington Narrows might have noticed something different last night.

The new Christmas lights, which were purchased by the city, were expected to be turned on for the first time as they bring a sense of the holidays to downtown Bremerton and the Manette Bridge.

“We believed that what we had done in the past wasn’t enough to give downtown a holiday feel,” City Council President Will Maupin said.

That all changed when city economic development director Gary Sexton brought up the idea of adding Christmas lights to the Harborside Fountain Park and Councilwoman Wendy Priest suggested extending the lights down Pacific Avenue and up Fourth Street, Maupin said.

“One of the other council members mentioned putting lights on the Manette Bridge and Gary (Sexton) grabbed the ball from there,” he said.

City public works crews stepped in and figured out a way to make the idea a reality, and the lights were expected to be turned on for the first time last night, he said.

“I think it will make a noticeable difference and get people to come downtown and see all the lights,” he said.

Unlike traditional Christmas lights, which require almost endless bulb replacement and use a great deal of energy, the new lights are LED lights, which will last a long time and are extremely energy efficient, Maupin said.

The new lights are a welcomed addition to the city’s downtown core for the holiday season, Bremerton Mainstream Association executive director Carol Atkinson said.

“I think they will create more of a holiday feel to the downtown area,” Atkinson said.

With the new fountain park, condominiums and other additions to downtown over the past few years, the lights will create another reason for people to come downtown during the holidays, Atkinson said.

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