Genoa tree lighting honors Falcke family |

Genoa tree lighting honors Falcke family

Santa arrives in Genoa Friday night just after the annual Christmas tree lighting.
Brad Coman |

More than 100 people gathered in Nevada’s oldest town Friday to ring in the holiday season including St. Nick himself.

‘Oh Christmas Tree’ and other Christmas songs were caroled through Genoa to illuminate the Hope Falcke’s Christmas tree on Nixon and Main Street.

The blue spruce was planted in 1988 in memory of Falcke who was a staple figure of Genoa, said granddaughter Katrina Falcke-Tholen.

“Christmas was her favorite season, so the town planted a tree to be lit every season in her memory,” she said.

Falcke-Tholen’s three children, Brock, 8, Walker, 5, and Hudson, 1, had the honor of lighting the tree.

“It’s our great-grandma’s tree and it’s a tradition for her,” Brock said.

“It was fun to light it, because it’s special,” Walker added.

Hudson was too young for comment.

The three Falcke-Tholen boys are sixth-generation Genoans.

After the tree was lit Santa Claus arrived by a fire engine to pass out candy canes to the children and hear their Christmas lists.

“Santa is a good friend and he’s really nice,” said 7-year-old Jack Esterby.

Jacob, 10, and Taylor,7, Cunningham said they have been a good boy and girl throughout the year and were hoping to present their lists to Santa.

Jacob wanted to ask Santa for a sixth-grade math book and Taylor wanted “Disney Descendants” dolls.

Falcke-Tholen was pleased with the turn out of the Christmas tree lighting and celebrating the season and their family tradition with others.

“It’s great that there’s this tradition in remembering her (Falcke’s) spirit of giving,” she said.