Saturday , June 22 2024
Mission Inn Hotel & Spa.

No “switch-on” ceremony for Riverside Festival of Lights

For the second year in a row, there will be no “switch-on” ceremony to start the holiday Festival of Lights at the Mission Inn Hotel & Spa.

That event traditionally draws about 75,000 people to downtown Riverside on the Friday night after Thanksgiving, but concerns about such a large gathering during COVID-19 have forced officials to once again cancel the ceremony.

“A generation of Riversiders has grown up with the Festival of Lights as a much-loved tradition,” Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson said in a statement. “We greatly appreciate our partners at the Mission Inn Hotel & Spa for their years of investment in this tradition, and we eagerly await the return of the switch-on ceremony in 2022.”

The festival will still feature lights and decorations at the Mission Inn and city-sponsored holiday decorations near the hotel. However, because of the pandemic, many of the festival’s traditional features, including live entertainment, food vendors, and horse-drawn carriages, won’t happen this year.

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