CALM Holiday Lights show kicks off Friday

Each year crew members try to out do themselves to carry on the local holiday tradition and to bring awareness to the California Living Museum.
BAKERSFIELD, CA- Crews are putting the finishing touches on a local holiday tradition. Holiday Lights at the California Living Museum is back for its 11th year this Friday.

The two million holiday lights on display at CALM are what keep people coming back for the holidays.

"As the numbers keep going up we just get more and more excited. We want people to enjoy this," said Vicki Barnett the project manager.

For the past couple of months, crew members have been working to make the show come to life.

"The end of September throughout the day after Thanksgiving," said display fabricator, Jose Guillen. 

The tree wrapping may take about three months but it takes an entire year of preparation. Josh Barnett and his company Lightasmic designed and installed the lights. Guillen says the light show includes about 90 percent energy-efficient LED bulbs.

On average, it takes about three hours to wrap a tree but more complex designs can take longer up to half a day.

More than 400,000 people have visited the museum to view the lights since its opening 11 years ago. Last year they had a record number of visitors at 56,000.

Despite putting up millions of lights, crew workers say the stress of delivering a show the community will enjoy is the most difficult part of the job. 

"I think the hardest part will be the pressure that Bakersfield depends on us to have this show," said Guillen.

Holiday lights is open to the public starting Friday from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at CALM on 10500 Alfred Harrell Hwy. 

Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and teens, and $6 for children 12 and younger. Kids under 3-years-old get in free.

Holiday Lights will be open nightly through Dec. 31st but they will be closed on Christmas.

Proceeds help the non-profit CALM foundation.
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