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Holiday Lights Festival moving to Old Market in 2019

Posted at 6:39 PM, Nov 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-14 19:39:54-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The annual Holiday Lights Festival is entering its 20th year and will have a new location in downtown Omaha in 2019.

Due to the ongoing construction at Gene Leahy Mall, the lights will be at the Old Market

"When people see the way we're doing downtown and lighting it up this year, it's different but still going to be beautiful," said Mayor Jean Stothert. "We didn't give a lot of thought of moving it to another park or somewhere else for a while because it is such a tradition down here."

Businesses in the Old Market are hoping the added foot traffic will help bring in new patrons.

"I think the holiday lights are exciting and warming and even when it's cold and blustery it warms your heart," said Susie Keuck, the owner of Nouvelle Eve in the Old Market.

"That's always our hope is that people will come down and enjoy all the festivities and shop in our stores and eat in our restaurants," said Mayor Stothert.

A big change this year at the Holiday Lights Festival is there won't be a countdown to turn on the lights. The New Years show will still go on, but they'll light them off near TD Ameritrade Park and CHI Health Center Omaha.

Mayor Stothert said the city is already planning how they'll utilize the Gene Leahy Mall for the holiday season once renovations are completed in 2021.