Downtown Edmonds was filled with the sounds of the holiday season Wednesday evening as the second annual “Jingle Those Bells” caroling contest turned the Red Twig patio area into a performing stage for local singers.
The City of Edmonds and members of ED!– the Edmonds Downtown Alliance — again joined forces to sponsor and organize the event, which is open to all regardless of singing ability, experience or age.
“This is the second year of the event, and I think it’s safe to say we have a tradition here,” said a grinning Patrick Doherty, Edmonds’ Director of Economic Development and Community Services. “The enthusiasm of both the singers and the audience is absolutely over the top. This is what holiday fun is all about!”
The event drew a crowd of more than 75 singers, music lovers, and friends who gathered to cheer on their favorite singers. Organizers offered special thanks to Red Twig for providing the venue and donating prizes for winners. Prizes were also donated by Starbuck’s, Glazed and Amazed, Cafe’ Louvre, Revelations Yogurt and our sister city Hekinan, Japan.
Carolers included The Mello-Aires performing Jingle Bells and Deck the Halls; Martha Macabre accompanying herself on the guitar singing O Come All Ye Faithful, Go Tell It On The Mountain, and Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas; The Minne-“Snow”-tans singing Here We Come a’Wassaling, and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer; The Edmonds-Woodway Alums performing Let It Snowand Carol of the Bells; The Carson Quartet offering Winter Wonderlandand Jingle Bell Rock; and finally the Holy Rosary Christmas Carolers giving their renditions of Up on the Housetop and So This is Christmas.
Between acts Edmonds’ own Royce Napolitino led the crowd in traditional holiday tunes, eliciting enthusiastic levels of audience participation especially on Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
Even the voting was festive, with candy ballots assigned to each competitor (e.g., tootsie roll pops for Martha Macabre and chocolate Santas for The Edmonds Woodway Alums) and the audience depositing that candy type as their ballot in the voting bucket.
The voting was hot and heavy, but when all the candy was counted the final tally put the Holy Rosary Christmas Carolers over the top for the second year running. The Mello-Aires put in a strong second-place showing, with Martha Macabre and the Edmonds-Woodway Alums in a dead heat for third.
— Story and photos by Larry Vogel