Learn about the new security and light installations at Noel Night downtown this year

Noel Night in Midtown Detroit
Posted at 8:58 PM, Dec 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-03 22:22:59-05

DETROIT — Saturday night Downtown Detroit was full of the holiday spirit and bright lights at the 48th annual Noel Night.

The event was the first one since 2020 due to the pandemic and this year there was increased security to ensure a peaceful night.

Detroit Police Commander Melissa Gardner says the increased security included four difference police agencies: Detroit Police, the Wayne County Reserves, Wayne State Police, and a private off-duty police force called Blue Line Protection.

"Unfortunately sometimes we do have incidents that occur such as it did at the tree lighting event," said Gardner. However, I would still say that these events are family friendly and allows you an opportunity just to see what Detroit has to offer."

There was also a curfew for minors unless they were accompanied by an adult.

For those under the age of 18 it was 10 p.m. and for those under the age of 15, the curfew was 8 p.m.

Mother-daughter due Janie Hawkins and Jennifer Jenkins have been coming to Noel Night for 20-some-years.

"We’ve been through a lot in my family this year and so it’s just nice to do something that’s comforting, that makes us happy that brings us joy because we had a lot of loss and heartache this year," said Jennifer. "So this is just a nice reminder that the holiday season is a time to remember your good memories and spend time with your family."

Both ladies said they were in favor of the heightened security.

Janie said, "I think it’s necessary, I mean crowd control, and I think that it may cut down on unnecessary mischief."

"You want people to feel safe," said Jennifer. "You want folks to come out with their kids and their parents and not have to worry about something like that happening. It’s a good thing and also keep them safe. It’s not always about the kids doing something bad or wrong but keeping them safe too. They’re young and vulnerable."

Commander Gardner says the goal of the heightened security is to make all the installations and vendors at Noel Night even more enjoyable, so the event is a holiday memory families won't soon forget.

"Family traditions are important in this day of internet and social media and tech. Everything happens so fast that its really nice to just hold on to things that you grew up doing and it’s really special," said Jennnifer.