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Making spirits bright: 72,000 lights illuminate Heritage Oak Tree in Cedar Park

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All at once, tens of thousands of white lights wrapped around a century-old oak tree lit up at Heritage Oak Park on a warm Dec. 1 evening in Cedar Park.

Lucas Rupp — the winner of the Tree Coloring Contest — was given the tree-lighting honor. With the flip of the big novelty switch, the city's annual Tree Lighting and Santa's Workshop began, kicking off the holiday season. 

Several city officials were in attendance, including City Council Members Heather Jefts, Stephen Thomas, Anne Duffy and Corbin Van Arsdale and Mayor Matt Powell. 

"In this time of year when we think so much of others, we want to say thank you for the opportunity to represent all of you," Powell said.

The event included pictures with Santa, free carriage rides, inflatable bounce houses, arts and crafts and carol singing by the Cedar Park High School women's choir. 

"In case you didn't know, Cedar Park has about about 72,000 residents," Powell said. "That's about how many white lights there are on that tree." 

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