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Northwest Missouri State University


News Release

The Northwest community gathers each December on the lawn of the historic Thomas Gaunt House to see the property's Black Hills Spruce tree light up during the Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony. Northwest will light the tree again on Dec. 1.

The Northwest community gathers each December on the lawn of the historic Thomas Gaunt House to see the property's Black Hills Spruce tree light up during the Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony. Northwest will light the tree again on Dec. 1. (Northwest Missouri State University photo)

Nov. 21, 2016

Annual Holiday Tree Lighting set for Dec. 1 at Gaunt House

Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski and first lady, along with their dog Ruby, address a crowd gathered outside the Gaunt House Thursday for the annual Holiday Tree Lighting ceremony.

Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski and first lady Denise Jasinski, along with their dog, Ruby, address a crowd gathered outside the Gaunt House during the annual Holiday Tree Lighting ceremony.

Local residents are invited to join the Northwest Missouri State University community Thursday, Dec. 1, for the eighth annual Holiday Tree Lighting on the lawn of the Thomas J. Gaunt House.

The event, hosted by the Jasinski family, begins at 5:15 p.m. Weather permitting, Santa Bobby Bearcat also will welcome guests for photos after the ceremony. Refreshments will be served.

The program will include remarks by Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski, Maryville Mayor Jason McDowell and Travis Dimmitt on behalf of Campus Ministerial Alliance. The Horace Mann Laboratory School’s Bearcat Choir and the Maryville High School Spectrum Choir also will perform.

Guests also will be invited to extend their gratitude to area men and women who are serving in the military overseas. Blank cards, markers, ink pads and stamps will be available for children and adults to create a personal message to these American heroes.

Additionally, the Jasinski family annually selects a philanthropy in conjunction with the Tree Lighting. This year, the Jasinski family will focus giving efforts on the University’s new Pay It Forward Fund and Food Pantry. To make a donation to the Pay It Forward Fund, click here.

Requested items for the food pantry include:

Donors may bring items to Northwest’s Office of University Marketing and Communication, located on the second floor of the Administration Building now through Dec. 1 or bring donations to the tree lighting.

The Gaunt House, located at the south edge of campus, was built during the 1870s and serves as the presidential residence. The home was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.


For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468