photo of Kathleen Sheridan, author of "Jaime the Elf"

The Lights On Celebration in Hollister California is an event like no other.  All the ingredients were there: lights, Christmas trees, music, floats, children, holiday cheer, Jaime the Elf, and even the Grinch in the custody of the Hollister Police Department.  Over the years, Lights On has grown into a daylong celebration presented by the Hollister Downtown Association and sponsored by Pacific Gas and Electric. 

Nants Foley of the American Red Cross hosted a Christmas card making party at the Red Cross office on Fifth Street as part of Hollister Gives Back.  People young and old stopped by to help make cards for US Troops overseas during the holidays. Even Hollister Police Department Chief Westrick stopped by to help.

The Veteran’s Memorial Building housed a Holiday Boutique.  Everything from jewelry and scarves for the ladies to Minion knit caps and onesies for the babies were available for purchase. One new addition this year was author Kathleen Sheridan signing her children’s book “Jaime the Elf.”  The beautifully illustrated picture book tells the story of how Jaime the Elf learned to turn on the lights in Hollister with acts of kindness.

Just outside the hall, the celebration continued with music and dancing.  Mr. O’s Jazz band performed as well as David Huboi and the Architecturals.  Even hula dancers performed to tribal music.  Just before the parade, West Coast Martial Arts performed some of their award winning hyper Martial Arts routines.

Then, of course, the parade started with tractor-trailers full of lights and children, motorcyclists from the Good Times Motorcycle Club and the American Legion Riders, classic cars, and even Dusty Crophopper from Planes “flew” by.

Each year, I wonder how anyone can top the previous year’s performance, yet it always does.    

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