For the holidays, the Robinson PTO and Development Office joined forces to bring the Robinson community together for a spectacular event—our Christmas Tree Lighting and Auction!
The Christmas Tree Lighting has become a much loved tradition here at Robinson School. It brings together everyone together—across cultures and generations—with activities for all ages and that flair that makes Christmas so special in Puerto Rico. This year, we had food, music, performances, kiosks with artisans selling their creations… and so much more!
The Robinson PTO was our own crew of Santa’s little helpers. The celebration started after school and lasted into the night of December 4, 2015. The Robinson Elementary School students performed their Christmas program in Kresge Chapel. PTO President and Elementary School Music teacher, Gloria Hicks, worked with the students all semester to prepare for this concert. The 3rd grade was our Jíbaro Choir, singing “Mi Puerto Rico.” The 4th, 5th and 6th graders sang contemporary Christmas songs, including “The Polar Express,” “Hot Chocolate,” “Believe,” and “When Christmas Comes to Town.” Victoria Jimenez (9th grade) and Rocio Aymat (10th grade) sang “Pat-a-Pan” accompanied by Adrian Machado on guitar (11th grade). Pilar Oliver, Upper School Music teacher, directed their performance.
The 2nd grade class performed a live Nativity scene or el pesebre navideño, one of the most significant Christmas images in Puerto Rico, coordinated by María Torres, the Elementary School Spiritual Life teacher. The Nativity describes Mary and Joseph’s arduous journey to the manger in Bethlehem where the baby Jesus/Christ, our Lord, was born.
The live Nativity incarnated the story of Christmas in Luke 2:1-20.
“An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them.”
“The angel said to the shepherds, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.’”
“A Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.”
“This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth peace!”
“The shepherds hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.”
Cindy Ogg, our new Head of School, expressed her gratitude for Robinson.Cindy Ogg, introducing Middle School student, Maria Alemán (8th grade), who sang “All I Want for Christmas” and brought the house down!!! Our Chaplain, Rosangélica Acevedo, closed activity with a Christmas prayer. Then, everyone went outside. There was music, craft tables and a bouncy house (or brinca brincas) for the little ones and a Christmas Bazaar where parents, family and friends shopped for gifts by local Puerto Rican artesanos. Our Gardening Club sold plants they had grown over the semester. The 7th grade class sold poinsettias, and they’ll be donating all their profits to a local charity.
Middle and Upper School students performed the play, “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas,” directed by Drama teacher, Karla Marcano. The 12th grade brought Santa to Robinson and the kids crowded around him for pictures. The 6th grade sponsored a Disco Party in the Auditorium for 4th to 6th graders. NEW YEAR’S “COUNTDOWN” AND CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING.
Yuvi Plena, a musical group dedicated to preserving Puerto Rican culture, performed with cabezudos, dancers wearing huge paper mâché heads of popular Puerto Rican folk figures.Robinson community “counts down” the New Year and—BOOM! The campus lit up like a tropical Christmas wonderland! Group Macarena performed after!
In the Christmas glow, old and new friends gathered at large round tables set up around the Alumni Fountain and rotunda.
Christmas dinner was served by Food Design, a catering company owned and operated by Robinson parent, Rebecca Molina.
Families and friends picked up their plates of traditional Puerto Rican Christmas dishes—pernil, arroz con gandules, guineitos en escabeche, pasteles, arroz con dulce and tembleque—and celebrated with good music, good food and good friends.