Marketing & Media Relations
Brady Butler, Director
9000 Babcock Blvd.
Pittsburgh, PA 15237

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Pittsburgh, PA – Dec. 2, 2010 -- The Equitable Gas Festival of Lights presented by La Roche College and the Sisters of Divine Providence continues a popular and memorable Christmas tradition in the North Hills. This year’s event is Friday, Dec. 3, from 3-9 p.m. Admission to all activities is free and open to the community on the adjoining campuses at 9000 Babcock Blvd. in McCandless.

Over the years the variety of activities as well as the number that attend has grown steadily. As many as 10,000 people visit the adjoining campuses for this family friendly event that includes fireworks, crafts, music, song, dance, children’s activities, ice sculpting, lots of hot chocolate, food concessions, and, of course, a visit from Santa Claus.

The event began fifteen years ago as a partnership with La Roche College and the Sisters of Divine Providence who combined their individual celebrations into one grand event that attracted a much larger community. UPMC Passavant also has been a part of the event in previous years. This is the first year Equitable Gas has been a sponsor.

"Equitable Gas is proud to sponsor this long-standing North Hills community tradition," said Bill Lucas, Executive Vice President of Equitable Gas. "We are committed to supporting family friendly events such as this in our service territory. It is exciting to partner for the first time with La Roche College and the Sisters of Divine Providence in this annual holiday season activity."

This year, La Roche is adding an international theme to showcase the many cultures represented on campus. Students from different countries will decorate trees with lights, ornaments and other symbols of their native countries and their holiday customs. Several of these groups also will provide music or dance.

“La Roche College and the Sisters of Divine Providence are so much a part of the greater North Hills community that it is only natural that we’d extend an invitation to all to enjoy a visit to our adjoining campuses at this wonderful time of the year,” said Sister Candace Introcaso, CDP, Ph.D, President of La Roche College. “For some, it may be the first time on our 40-acre campus, often a surprise when they see its size!”

On the schedule to date are the Tri-County Choir Institute Choraleers,Teen Chorale and Village Singers; the bell, vocal and instrumental choirs of the Sisters of Divine Providence; and holiday selections performed by the students of Providence Heights Alpha School, a private, Catholic, coeducational school for grades K-8 located on the campus of the Sisters of Divine Providence.

The event starts early – 3 p.m. – with another major attraction -- the annual Craft Show. More than 70 crafters will offer an array of locally made as well as international items just in time for holiday gift giving. La Roche alumni also gather for their holiday reception. An ice sculptor will create a dazzling display to accent the twinkle of Christmas lights on trees and around the lake and in the dozens of windows of the Sisters’ own Providence Heights – the familiar castle-like building located adjacent to the college campus.

Would any Pittsburgh celebration be complete without fireworks? A brilliant display will cap off the evening.

Additional sponsors include:Trib Total Media, Fragasso Financial Advisors, Best Feeds Garden Centers, La Roche College Alumni and The Home Depot.

For additional details click here.

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