After a year off because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Erie’s own “Larger than Life” holiday tradition returned to Perry Square Friday evening.
The friendly event kicked off Friday night featuring holiday music, village shops, and plenty of bright lights.
Erie Mayor Joe Schember arrived via horse drawn carriage to turn on the 30 foot Christmas tree in Perry Square. He says its incredible because they have not had anything like it in Downtown Erie for two years.
“I can tell you that the park is packed and there are more people than I thought there would ever be. There are families here and it’s just a very great experience.” said Mayor Joe Schember, City of Erie.
Mayor Schember says it’s very important for the city’s spirit to have the return of Downtown D’Lights.
“It’s very important to all of us, just for our mental health and our good feelings about life and doing something like this is so special. You get to see people you don’t even know but you still wish them a Merry Christmas. It’s just a great, great experience.” Mayor Schember said.
Put on by the Erie Downtown Partnership, officials say it’s great to finally see the hard work pay off.
“We had crews working the past two weeks to put up our 30 foot downtown tree. We have thousands and thousands of lights, beautiful and professional lights that get flipped on tonight. It’s great to see all the hard work pay off.” said David Tamulonis, Erie Downtown Partnership.
Erie resident Patti Schaefer was there with her family. Downtown D’Lights is a tradition she is glad to continue.
“It’s a wonderful night to be out and just enjoying family after everything we have been through.” said Patti Schaefer, Erie resident.
Gannon University student Chris Mashula says Downtown D’Lights gives us a sense of community.
“We are not used to that going through the pandemic. As a college student, we have been stuck in our dorms and have not been able to come out into the community and share this sense of season with our peers and the society in general.” said Chris Mashula, Gannon University student.
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