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Red square Photo gallery: 45 photos from the event

With a "Ten, nine, eight ..." Santa led a countdown for the lighting of the tree at the North Gate Friday evening to begin the holiday season. After a children's chorus performed holiday songs, dozens of children bundled up in winter hats and coats visited with Santa and Mrs. Claus. The crowd warmed up with cookies and hot chocolate provided by the Optimist Club, the sponsor of the annual event at the Gazebo.

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