Athens Lights-Up For Christmas 2020
- by XpatAthens
- Wednesday, 16 December 2020
“Light to those who truly bring light into our lives” is the motto of this year’s Athenian Christmas tree lighting ceremony which took place amidst the lockdown and without the usual crowds due to Covid-19 restrictions.
The Municipality of Athens choose a different way to share the lighting of the tree in Syntagma Square with everyone this year. A short film tells an Athenian Christmas story about the real heroes of the municipality, coming to light what most of us haven’t had the opportunity to see this year - Syntagma Square all bright and beautiful!
The protagonist is Dionysis Nikolaou, an electrician engineer and the oldest employee of the municipality. A born and bred Athenian, just like his grandfather was, he lives in the neighborhood of Sepolia with his wife and son. After he completed his education, he began working in the electricity department of the municipality and learned the secrets of every corner of the city. Over the years he’s learned not to throw away anything that is made; he’s worked in just about all positions - on the road for repairs, in the warehouse for recording and receiving orders, making sure that nothing is missing when needed. Today he chooses to work mainly at night, so that his younger colleagues can have the ease of working the morning shift.
The one thing that he hasn’t ever changed is the lighting of the city at Christmas time, which culminates with the lighting of the tree in Syntagma. This little film captures the route of bringing this light so that we can all share in the special moment of lighting up the streets of Athens!
The Mayor of Athens, Costas Bakogiannis, emphasized this message on the occasion of the lighting of the Christmas tree by saying, "This year, the Municipality of Athens addresses the great thanks it owes to its people…The invisible heroes, who tirelessly remain on the front line, not only at Christmas but every day, in order to break the darkness of this unprecedented time for the inhabitants of this city. This year the lights are on those who really give light to our lives. Merry Christmas!”