Best Buddies tree-lighting planned along Riverwalk

Best Buddies tree-lighting planned along Riverwalk

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - A Rockefeller Center style tree lighting event will take place along the Chattahoochee River next month to kick off the holidays and highlight the work of the Best Buddies organization.

It's the first annual Christmas Tree Lighting for the group and will take place on Thursday, Dec. 3 on the upper level of the River Walk in Columbus. The tree, donated by Trees Columbus will be planted and will grow to be 40 to 45 feet tall.

Best Buddies is a non-profit organization founded by Anthony Kennedy Shriver in 1989 and serves to foster one-to-one friendships, leadership development and job integration for children and adults who are intellectually and developmentally disabled. Anthony Shriver is the son of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver who founded the Special Olympics.

Although Best Buddies is global with chapters maintained in 53 countries and 50 of our U.S., the state of Georgia does not yet have a state office. The Columbus Board and Forsyth Board in Cumming, GA are collaborating to raise the funds needed to establish a Georgia office.

Currently, there is one chapter at CSU and two associate chapters at Shaw and Northside High Schools. The Christmas Tree Lighting on the Chattahoochee, which starts at 5:30 pm on December 3rd, is just one of two fundraisers to help establish a Georgia state office.

For more information on the organization visit their website: www.bestbuddies.org/treelighting.

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