City Hall Tree Lighting Friday Evening
Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin will throw the switch Friday evening on 3,500 lights adorning a 70-foot-tall City Hall Christmas tree donated and decorated by local volunteers. The public is invited to take part in the 6 p.m. tree lighting ceremony, which will include Christmas carols, light refreshments and visits with Santa.

City employee Robert Jensen spearheaded the all-volunteer effort to continue the Christmas tree tradition at City Hall, which began in 2006. Jensen used personal time to organize the effort and secure donations. Last week, he and other volunteers cut the tree from the forest above Shaver Lake, delivered it to City Hall and decorated it over a period of several days.

"I encourage everyone to come out Friday evening to celebrate the start of the Christmas season as well as the spirit of volunteerism that has restored this wonderful tradition to our community," Swearengin said.

Friday's event will feature KMPH personality Kopi Sotiropulos as master of ceremonies. Photos with Santa will be available for $2 from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. and following the tree lighting ceremony.