Holiday spirit lights up for thousands with opening night of Christmas in the Park in San Jose

Lauren Martinez Image
Saturday, November 25, 2023
Opening night of Christmas in the Park in San Jose
Thousands of people are getting into the holiday spirit at the opening night of Christmas in the Park in San Jose.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Thousands of people are getting into the holiday spirit at the opening night of Christmas in the Park.

Each year, the two-acre Plaza De Cesar Chavez in San Jose is transformed into a festive village.

San Jose resident Luis Carrillo has been going since he could remember. Carrillo came with his two young daughters and wife.

"Just you know kind of keep the tradition going and if you have little ones, great food, great people," Carrillo said.

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Kaetlyn Luce loves the event so much, she's now a part of it working at the hot chocolate stands.

"It's the real Christmas spirit, real magic is here at Christmas in the Park because everyone- the community comes together," Luce said.

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Santa and Mayor Matt Mahan held Friday's tree lighting ceremony.

Pictures with the Grinch were held below it.

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Christmas in the Park is a nonprofit organization. Each tree thoughtfully decorated by schools, community groups, businesses and families.

San Jose resident Jennifer Thurston said Christmas in the Park is one of her favorite events of the year.

"Coming here seeing all the people, seeing our neighbors, seeing neighbors we've not met before just being here it's so community based we love it," Thurston said.

There are hundreds of trees, more than 40 holiday displays and lots of glittering lights.

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New parents Crystal and Alejandra Lopez Garcia said it's a joy to bring their son Mateo.

"I think having a kid is totally different now. Seeing it through his eyes is awesome," Crystal Lopez Garcia said.

If you plan on heading to Christmas in the Park with friends or family, admission is completely free.

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