AUSTIN - The Trail of Lights officially opened to the public Saturday night, as hundreds walked through that famous tunnel and through the trail at Zilker Park.
Organizers said the exit tunnel has three times more lights this year.
Among the treasured decorations there are also new ones, like the Artic Pointe at Lou Neff Point. Another new feature are rest stops for people along the way.
“Giving you (a break) about halfway through the trail,” said Executive Director for the Trail of Lights Foundation James Russell. “Sit down, get a bite to eat, maybe have a drink."
The trail boasts 40 displays, 2 million lights and carnival rides.
"It is a uniquely Austin experience in the middle of our city,” said Russell. “Austin is a city within a park, and that park happens to be Zilker. So getting to experience all these different things that the Trail of Lights has to offer in the middle of your city is pretty unique.”
KVUE talked to a family who moved from a small town in Kentucky this year to the Austin area.
“We're so excited! It's our first time,” said Rachel Nevitt.
She, her husband, Derrick, and her young daughter, Charlee, looked up in awe of the trail’s lights.
Charlee could not contain her excitement.
"Because we're going to see Santa,” she said.
"We came from a small town in Kentucky, so you know stuff like lights and all these people coming together -- it just makes it Christmasy!” said Rachel. “We get to see Santa and it's awesome!"
The Trail of Lights runs every evening at Zilker Park until Dec. 23. Admission is free from Dec. 9-14 and from Dec. 18-19.
It's $3 for general admission all other nights.
You must purchase parking passes in advance at austintrailofights.org.
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