Christmas officially arrives in El Paso this evening at 5:50 p.m. That’s when Mayor John Cook is expected to flip the switch on the 10,000 plus lights that hang on the Afghan pine tree in San Jacinto Plaza. (The entire plaza itself is decorated with more than 30,000 lights.)

Krelic/flickr

The 76th annual tree lighting ceremonies will be followed by the 14th annual Holiday Lights parade, featuring 60 floats and walking groups all tricked out in colorful lights. But the night doesn't end there. For the second year, a 20-minute fireworks show will proceed the parade. Now that's one festive night!

Although the tree lighting is the centerpiece, the Celebration of Lights Ceremony itself starts at 4:30 p.m. I highly recommend, however, you get there way earlier as the El Paso Times reports a record crowd of about 100,000 people is expected. Here’s an overview of the scheduled events:

4:30 p.m. First Armored Division Band of Fort Bliss
5:00 p.m. St. Anthony Franciscanos Choir
5:30 p.m. Celebration of Lights Ceremony
5:50 p.m. Downtown Christmas Tree lighted by Mayor John Cook
5:55 p.m. Holiday Lights Parade
7:15 p.m. Fireworks Show

Have fun, keep warm, and if you take any pictures feel free to post them up on 93.1 KISS-FM'S Facebook Wall.