300,000 Lights Brighten Up Bemidji For Annual Night We Light Celebration
Although it was only 28 degrees tonight, it didn’t stop people from filling the streets of downtown Bemidji to see thousand of lights making the city bright. The annual Night We Light Celebration kicked off today with new events, holiday-themed activities, and brighter lights for everyone to enjoy.
“For the first time in a long time, lights in Library Park are going to go on, sponsored by Sanford Health, 25,000 cool white led lights wrapped on park trees, the first time the park has been illuminated since the early 2000s,” said Todd Haugen, Paul Bunyan Broadcasting Operations Manager.
The celebration also features a parade where dozens of colorful floats travel through downtown Bemidji. Following the parade, everyone gathered for the lighting of over 300,000 lights (an amount that has never been matched before) that will light up the town in Bemidji for everyone to see.
“None of this would be possible without support from the community, and thanks to the support from our business, organizations, families, and individuals, we have been able to continue our momentum and we have a grand vision for this First City of Lights,” said Josh Peterson, Bemidji Jaycees President.
Over thousands of people were at tonight’s celebration, and this is an event that has been a part of residents’ traditions for years.
“Every year, my family comes to the very end of the parade because there’s a truck that throws out chips and there’s a lot of chips at the end. So we take home a lot of chips and that’s the highlight for us,” said attendee Taylor Gish.
“My favorite part is seeing the Christmas tree, my family has been coming to the Night We Light for as long as I can remember,” said attendee Samantha Melberg.
“I am so incredibly proud of what we have been able to accomplish in a short amount of time. My Christmas wish is for that each and every one of you, stop, pause and cherish these moments and remember how truly blessed we really are,” said Peterson.
This year’s Night We Light was like no other: with the addition of new LED snowflakes, Santa’s Workshop and a visit from the Jaycees National President, this year’s Night we Light is one to be remembered.
Santa’s Workshop will also be open tomorrow at the Tourist Information Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.