FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla. – The City of Palm Coast hosted its annual Tree Lighting Ceremony in conjunction with the Rotary Club of Flagler County’s Fantasy Lights display this weekend in Central Park.

More than a thousand residents gathered to enjoy the annual holiday kickoff event which included the opening night “Taste of the Holidays” food truck event.

Palm Coast Mayor David Alfin is joined by Santa Claus. Photo: City of Palm Coast Parks & Recreation Department.

Leading up to the lighting of the tree, residents waited anxiously for the arrival of Santa Claus who was escorted to Central Park by the Palm Coast Fire Department.

The Palm Coast Mayor David Alfin welcomed the community with opening remarks.

“This is a night that brings us all together in the spirit of the holiday season,” Alfin said. “Each light on this tree represents a moment of joy, a shared smile, and the love we have for one another. May this light be a beacon of hope, love, and unity for our community throughout the holiday season.”

Rotary Club of Flagler County President Charles Barbel welcomes residents to the 18th Annual Fantasy Lights. Photo: Rotary Club of Flagler County.

Rotary Club of Flagler County President Charles Barbel took great pride in welcoming the community to this year’s Fantasy Lights program where visitors may enjoy more than fifty lighted and animated displays sponsored by area businesses and residents, at no cost to the public.

“Fantasy lights is so special and enable many to cherish the moments of our loved ones,” Barbel said. “Slowdown from the busyness of life and gather together around good things to enjoy each other!”

A collaborative effort, the City of Palm Coast and the Rotary Club of Flagler County combine efforts to kickoff the holiday season. Photo: Rotary Club of Flagler County.

The Rotary created the Fantasy Lights program nearly two decades ago bringing to life the childhood vision of Tiffany Butler daughter of Rotarian Bill Butler after she passed away in 2002.

“I couldn’t do this without my club’s support and the community’s support,” Butler said. Anytime you’re the member of a club or organization and you want to donate or help, you have to find your passion and this is my passion.”

The event runs from Nov. 25 through Dec. 30, nightly from 6:30 to 9 p.m. To see the schedule of events, see, https://www.flaglerrotary.org/fantasylights.php