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St. Augustine 30th Nights of Lights draws thousands to kick off holiday season

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — In a spectacular kickoff to the holiday season, St. Augustine embraced the festive spirit as the city brightened the night during its annual Nights of Lights event. City officials reported an overwhelming turnout, estimating that between 10,000 to 20,000 people gathered to witness the dazzling display of holiday lights.

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As Christmas spirit permeated the air, attendees reveled in the magical ambiance created by over three million lights adorning the city.

Among the crowd was Mike Steele, who traveled all the way from Orlando to experience the enchanting event.

Steele expressed his anticipation, saying, “As we saw kinda the traffic building up on the way in, we definitely knew it was going to be something that was going to be worth looking at.”

This year marks the 30th anniversary of Nights of Lights, attracting visitors not only from across the state but also from various parts of the country.

Residents of Pittsburgh, such as Alexis Ellermeyar and her four-year-old daughter Violet, joined the festivities for the first time.

Ellermeyar shared, “We’re just super excited to be together to kick off the holiday season with Nights of Lights.”

The spectacular light display, which will continue until January 31, 2024, adds a unique touch to St. Augustine’s charm.

Children in attendance expressed their delight, with one young attendee sharing, “They’re really pretty... I like the colors.”

Nights of Lights has become a beloved tradition in St. Augustine, drawing both locals and visitors alike to witness the city’s transformation into a holiday wonderland. The celebration not only marks the commencement of the festive season but also serves as a vibrant testament to the unity and joy shared by the community during this special time of the year.

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