Austin celebrates 50 years of 'Trail of Lights'

 Sunday, the 50th Trail of Lights in Zilker Park had its grand opening.

The Trail of Lights Foundation says more than 425,000 people came through last year during the 15 days it was open.  They're hoping for the same or more this year.

Literally millions of Christmas lights stretch out for 1.25 miles in Zilker Park for 15 days in December.  Mario Espinoza the president of the board of directors for the Trail of Lights Foundation says 50 years ago it looked a lot different.

"It was a very small event but in true Austin form and style we continued to add and add and add to it and now 50 years later you have 1.25 miles of lights...millions of lights," Espinoza said.

For Alizae Trevino, it represents childhood memories.

"I love the Trail of Lights.  I think it's a good time for people to come with their families.  I brought my little twin brothers," Trevino said.

The trail is complete with food trucks, music and more than 50 displays.

"I would say the beauty and the beast because I grew up loving that movie and the little mermaid and the funnel cakes and the hot chocolate," she said.

Kaitlyn Brauetigam says it gets her in the Christmas spirit.  "I think just the atmosphere.  It's very 'Christmasey,'" she said.

Rob Aikens drove all the way from San Antonio to see this.

"Nice lights, I like the theme.  I like how they're talking about giving back to the kids, stuff like that... and 50 years is a long time," Aikens said.

For more information on the Trail of Lights, like parking and hours, head to

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