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Old Sacramento Holiday Tree lights up, kicking off holiday season

Sacramento officially kicked off the 2020 holiday season with the annual lighting of the Holiday Tree in Old Sacramento on the eve of Thanksgiving.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — There were more the 50 people who stood to watch the 24,000 lights flicker on the 60-foot tree. Although, that’s far less than the hundreds who typically venture to the area for the event.

Many holiday traditions like the tree lighting are being re-imagined as the threat of coronavirus looms. This year’s tree lighting event was streamed on the Old Sacramento Facebook page as city officials urged the public not to attend.

Some people are opting for small gatherings with their closest friends or relatives. Many said they have plans to celebrate with loved ones virtually. Folks say they will be taking much of their shopping online too.

“We're trying to do what we can for the kids, but you know trying to be safe too," said Chad Hall of El Dorado Hills, who attended the event with his wife and two children.

Despite changes, some say the spirit of the holidays isn’t lost. You can see the holiday tree lit up in Old Sacramento each evening through the holidays.

“It’s still here. It’s all about family," said Matt Levya, who attended the event with his wife and two children.

The event was hosted by the Downtown Sacramento Partnership and was sponsored by Dignity Health.

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