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By: Donte Chase Bridges

Chicago, IL- If you love seasonal decorations this time of year but aren’t sure where to view the best festival and Christmas displays this side of the north pole, Chicago has a solution for you this holiday season.

Beginning Nov 16th through Nov 17th, BMO Harris Bank and Magnificent Mile kicked off Chicago’s Annual Lights Festivals in Chicago’s premiere fashion district, One Magnificent Mile, located on North Michigan Ave. Chicago’s Lights Festival celebrated the upcoming holiday season by showcasing a variety of events, such as: The Lights Festival Parade, Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, Lights Festival Lane, discounted shopping, and live musical performances.

Friday, Nov 16, Christmas Tree Lighting/Evening Parade.

Friday, Nov 16 marked the annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony where thousands of people enjoyed the lighting of the Norway Spruce, standing over 60 ft tall, and decorated with over 40,000 lights. Mickey Mouse led off the Lights Festival Parade as the Grand Marshall to close out this night’s activities. Children as well as adults watch the parade with joyous expressions while anticipating seeing some of their favorite cartoon characters.

Saturday, Nov 17 Live Musical Performances.

Saturday, Nov 17 topped off the 2018 Lights Festival with an array of musical performances by artists such as: Cailee Rae, Dcapella, Codi Simpson, and Cozi Zuehldorf. All the songs seemed to ring in the holiday season as the audience dance and sang along while listening to their favorite jingles.

“It gives me a good reason to come out the house and get some fresh air with my family,” Chuckled parade on-looker Edna Smith. “I come down here every year and bring my grandkids with me to look at all the lights and see the parade, good thing it’s not too cool outside or we wouldn’t be able to stand out in the streets for too long; I’m glad we did though,”

Fellow parade enthusiast, Laura Stinton, also shared a similar feeling about the festivities. “I just like. This puts me in the spirit of what Christmas is, I love coming to see this. As a matter a fact besides Christmas, this one of the only reasons why I come downtown when the holidays are going on. You just get a good feeling around all these people that are happy.”

Throwing a festival of this magnitude was no easy task. Located in Millennium Park, assembly crews worked around the clock to prepare for the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, which showcased a beautiful 60 ft. Norway Spruce, decorated with more than 40,000 blue lights. If that wasn’t enough, Hundreds of contractors, landscapers, and workers, transformed Michigan Ave. into a winter wonderland, which can be seen from the High-Rises and stores covering Chicago’s One Magnificent mile.

With the many displays Chicago’s Lights Festival exhibited, all activities turned out to be a huge success. The public can expect to witness this annual festival for years to come. For more information on this annual event, go to www.themagnificentmile.com/lights-festival


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