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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Lighting up College Station


Stephen C. Beachy Central Park will have their drive through Christmas lights set up through Jan. 1.

College Station’s “Christmas in the Park” has returned for another holiday season, spreading light to the community.
According to the City of College Station’s website, Stephen C. Beachy Central Park will be lit up with Christmas light displays for guests to enjoy as they walk or drive through the park through Jan. 1. There will also be a drive-thru event on Dec. 4 and 5.
College Station’s recreation manager Ana Romero said the event looks very different this year due to COVID-19.
“[The] ‘Christmas in the Park’ event is usually an event where we do a lot of set up,” Romero said. “We have bounce houses, we have snow slides [and] we had a petting zoo. Having all of that was going to have a lot of people being together at the same time, which is one of the things we are trying to prevent.”
The city’s Parks & Recreation Department came up with a solution to this problem: a drive-thru event.
“We knew that if we were able to do it as a drive-thru event, we were not going to get canceled,” Romero said. “We felt that having the drive-thru would still let people know that we’re here, that we want to make sure we get the community together, but in a different, COVID-19-friendly way.”
The drive-thru will allow guests to enjoy the lights and visit the set-up stations from the safety of their vehicle. According to the City of College Station’s website, the event will include a live nativity scene, Santa, a North Pole mailbox, cookies, hot cocoa, free stuffed animals for children and an arts and crafts goodie bag.
“One of the coolest things we were able to do this year is that you can actually tune into Christmas 97.3 and… hear music as you’re driving through,” Romero said.
College Station councilwoman Elizabeth Cunha volunteered at “Christmas in the Park” with her husband in 2019 and said the event brings people together.
“Everyone is so happy, and there’s just the camaraderie,” Cunha said. “That’s the magic of it for me; everyone can be a part of it. We’re all celebrating the winter holidays together.”
Romero said the light displays the event is known for being built by the Parks Operations team, and they add new displays every year. Cunha said her grandchildren enjoy a couple of these in particular.
“My grandchildren love the snowflake forest,” Cunha said. “They think the tunnel is super cool. If it’s not too crowded, they’ll lay down under the tunnel and watch the lights go over their heads.”
Cunha said the event is a great place to make memories, and it plays an essential role in many people’s holiday plans.
“[For] a lot of people, it’s become part of their family tradition over the years,” Cunha said. “It’s just a great, positive event to be a part of.”

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