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The Turlock Christmas tree in Central Park was lit up Friday night (KRISTINA HACKER/The Journal).

Community members gathered at Turlock’s Central Park on Friday night for the revival of a holiday tradition, the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree. The Festival of Lights made a triumphant return after being cancelled last year due to the pandemic. Hundreds walked the streets of downtown Turlock before and after the official tree lighting, while being entertained by singers and enjoying some nighttime shopping as stores stayed open later than normal for the event. Christmas events will continue in downtown Turlock with the annual parade set for Dec. 3. 

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Shayla takes a holiday photo with the Grinch during the Festival of Lights event (KRISTINA HACKER/The Journal).
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Ricky and Tiffany Singh, along with Mia, 3, and Maddy, 4, visit downtown Turlock for the tree lighting, a first for the family (KRISTINA HACKER/The Journal).
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Mayor Amy Bublak prepares the countdown to the tree lighting (KRISTINA HACKER/The Journal).
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Ariana Flores of Turlock sings “Where are you Christmas?” before the tree lighting (KRISTINA HACKER/The Journal).