BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — The City of Bakersfield held its Fifth Annual Christmas Tree Lighting event tonight. Bakersfield City Councilmembers were joined by residents to celebrate the start of the holiday season. As you drive down Truxtun Avenue, you can't miss the tree glowing in front of Mechanics Bank Arena. It's the city's way of welcoming the holidays.
“Merry Christmas Bakersfield, we’re so glad to be back out, Merry Christmas Bakersfield," Mr. and Mrs. Claus said.
Thankful to be apart of the celebrations, Mr. and Mrs. Claus say they are lucky to be the ones to spread Christmas cheer.
“That’s what it's about it's about Christmas, it's about Jesus, that’s right," Mr. and Mrs. Claus said.
They even grant those Christmas wishes.
“He asked Santa too, if Santa’s coming this year to make sure he’s giving out gifts and they said nothing’s stopping him," Bakersfield resident, Deanna Stillwell said.
Bakersfield resident Hector Figueroa says they are grateful to feel a sense of normalcy given last year's restrictions.
“We’ve had a pretty crazy year with COVID-19 and it's continuing to get worse but so we just wanted to get out and do something," Figueroa said.
Mayor Karen Goh did the honors of lighting the tree for all to see.
“The lighting of the Christmas tree starts the Christmas season for Bakersfield, California. So good to see boys and girls, mom's and dad's decked out in their Christmas Santa hats here for a joyous time," Mayor Goh said.
The lighting of the tree is the city's tradition of bringing the public together. An event Mr. and Mrs. Claus say they've been proud to be apart of for the last five years.
“Ever since Jackie Sullivan has started this, we have been the Santa for the tree lighting," Mr. and Mrs. Claus said.
“Merry Christmas Bakersfield, have a wonderful holiday season," Mayor Goh said.
City officials say the tree will be lit up outside of Mechanics Bank Arena until at least Christmas.