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Mother nature rains on the 31st annual H-E-B Christmas tree lighting ceremony

Spurs-themed tree still a spectacle despite heavy rain

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SAN ANTONIO – Despite the heavy downpour, hundreds of people gathered around to celebrate the 31st annual H-E-B Christmas tree lighting ceremony.

The 55-foot white fir Christmas tree was finally lit Friday night by more than 10,000 eco-friendly lights, and decorated with handcrafted Spurs-themed ornaments. Fueled by tradition and love for the Spurs, two local families decided to continue their yearly ritual with an umbrella at hand.

David Soriano, a local resident of San Antonio, has been a Spurs fan since 1976 and attended the Spurs’ very first game at the historic HemisFair Arena. But the memories he cherishes are the ones he creates every year with his daughter at the lighting event. “Ever since she was a little girl, we’ve been coming here,” Soriano said. “She’s 13 years old now and I want her cherish the memories of her and her dad coming here.” 

Javier Martinez and his family attend the event every year and despite the heavy showers during this year’s ceremony, they were not going to let mother nature rain on their family tradition. “We knew it was going to rain so just bring out the umbrella, rain is not going to hurt us,” Martinez said. “It’s a family tradition every year for the last 10 years, we’ve come out here to see the lighting of the Christmas tree.”

Many people showed up well before the lighting ceremony to attend the festivities around Alamo Plaza that started around 3 p.m. Visitors were able to get their face painted, shoot hoops at an inflatable basketball game, listen to live music, and engage with the Spurs' Team Energy crew with some even hopping on stage to dance along. 

For the second time this year, the tree’s light display will be synchronized with a music program – as if this year's Spurs-themed tree couldn’t be any better for San Antonio residents.


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