Merry and Bright event kicks off Christmas season

Riverside, Calif. (Dec. 1, 2023)  The campus community at California Baptist University came together to celebrate the Christmas season at the annual Merry and Bright event on Nov. 28.

Live music reverberated over the Front Lawn as students eagerly anticipated the traditional tree lighting while enjoying hot cocoa under twinkling lights.

Merry and Bright event kicks off Christmas season

The event, hosted by Community Life, is held at the start of the holiday season to bring CBU students together in a celebration of Christmas.

The evening included Dr. Ronald L. Ellis, president of CBU, reading the Christmas story from Luke 2. Then attendees lit the candles they received earlier in the evening and counted down with the band to the lighting of the Christmas tree, which came to life in a dazzlingly festive display of light.

The fun continued afterward, with Lancers enjoying holiday treats, photo booths, ornament making, gingerbread house making and even sledding in manmade snow.

The Christmas season is also a time of giving. Spiritual Life hosted a toy drive, offering students an opportunity to help families in need by donating gifts. The drive kicked off at Merry and Bright and will last until Dec. 5.

Mackenzie Alvarado, an early childhood studies sophomore, summed up the event in one word — community.

"I loved lighting the candles with everyone, and when the tree got lit up, it was really great to see," Alvarado said.

Merry and Bright brings the campus together in a festive way, said Tyler Millar, a criminal justice and business administration sophomore.

"To me, Christmas means coming together with family and friends,” Miller said.

Grace Letherer, an art education junior, enjoyed catching up with people.

"My favorite part about Merry and Bright was just celebrating Jesus and celebrating the Christmas season and getting to do that with the CBU community,” Letherer said. “It felt so close and so tightknit even though there were so many people there."

Contact CBU Marketing and Communication

Vice President for Marketing and Communication:
Angela Meluski

8432 Magnolia Avenue
Riverside, CA 92504