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Thousands attend Traverse City's annual tree lighting to kick off the holiday season

Thousands attended to the annual tree lighting in Downtown Traverse City Saturday to kick off the holiday season.

GRAND TRAVERSE COUNTY, Mich., (WPBN/WGTU) -- The holiday season has begun in Traverse City!

Thousands flooded the streets of Downtown Traverse City Saturday to see the big blue spruce on the intersection of Front and Cass Streets light up and to welcome Santa Claus to town.

Santa fielded questions from a few lucky kids before he lit the tree with Mayor Jim Carruthers.

Then, East Front Street was cleared for the Parade of Lights.

"Santa is fantastic. He comes up on stage and he gets the key to the city. Everybody counts down together. It's just really that special hometown feel," said Colleen Paveglio, the Traverse City Downtown Development Authority Marketing & Communications Director. "With the parade, it really truly is magical. It's just the spirit of the season. We're happy to put this on for everybody."

Santa's house will be located at the intersection of Cass Street and State Street and open to visitors on Friday.

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