Click! Time to turn on Festival of Lights

Ready … set … light. The Festival of Lights will light up Comanche Trail Park starting Thursday. The annual trail of lights will be illuminated in the park each night from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. until Dec. 31. Last year, more than 20,000 people came from 38 states and 14 countries to view the lights. “I am hoping to have 25,000 people come through this year,” said Pat Simmons, Festival of Lights founder. There are more than 1 million lights spread throughout the park. For the past 15 years, a new display has been added to the collection. This year, there will be a tribute honoring veterans. Poinsettias will again grace the top of Scenic Mountain as well as the air park. According to Simmons, there will be a 150-foot poinsettia flanked by three 50-foot poinsettias placed at the air park this year. “The flowers haven’t been up there the past three years due to the lack of a power source,” Simmons said. “This year we have the propane generator to provide the power and they will once again be back up on the mountain.”Included in the Festival of Lights will be a gift shop offered toward the end of the trail. There will be several souvenirs available to purchase. The gift shop will be open from Dec. 15 to Dec. 23 with Santa and Mrs. Claus on hand to take pictures and visit with the children Dec. 16, 17, 21, 22 and 23. “Another added incentive this year is if people will stop in at the gift shop they can register to win a 6-foot poinsettia,” Simmons said. The winner of the poinsettia will be announced Dec. 23. All entries must be made in the gift shop between Dec. 15 and Dec. 23. Contact Staff Writer Amanda Moreno at 263-7331 ext. 234 or by e-mail at