November 27, 2004 at 1:51 AM EST - Updated July 10 at 8:05 PM
FOX 19's Rob Williams and Tricia Macke hosted Friday night's annual "Mayor's Fountain Square Holiday Lighting" broadcast. They were joined by hundreds of families all wanting to kick off the season right. Ice skaters didn't seem to mind the air temperature that was much warmer than last year and neither did the guest of honor Sgt. Paul Brondhaver. The Anderson Township resident and Cincinnati city employee is home after being wounded this summer in Iraq. Brondhaver would later flip the swith for the lighting of a 25 foot blue spruce tree named Vern. Vern was planted 30 years ago by Arlene Coy of Oakley. The tree's decorations come from children who enjoy Cincinnati Recreation Commission centers. Many of those kids came to Fountain Square to see how their work paid off, enjoy some ice skating, and the entertainment. Mayor Charlie Luken took to the podium shortly before 7pm to start the countdown to the lighting. In January the blue spruce tree will be replanted in a Cincinnati park.