COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - More than 1,000 people turned out at the South Carolina Statehouse for the 44th annual Carolighting ceremony.
The state Christmas tree in front of the building was illuminated at the end of the ceremony Sunday night, with 35,000 red, green, yellow, blue, orange and purple lights.
The 200-plus musicians included Columbia's First Baptist Church handbell ringers, the 282nd Army Band Brass Quintet, the Benedict College Gospel Choir, the Carolighting community choir and a children's choir.
Both Gov. Mark Sanford and Mayor Steve Benjamin spoke.
A group of volunteers put the event together on short notice after a Columbia civic group pulled out as sponsor.