CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – It’s officially Christmas time in Charleston! On Thursday, crowds enjoyed the Marion Square Christmas Tree lighting ceremony.

Three dazzling Christmas trees will now shine down on the park for the entirety of the holiday season, bringing normalcy back to the holidays for the first time since 2019.

Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg opened the ceremony, followed by a prayer from Pastor Reverend Dr. Marion Platt, III.

This year’s tree lighting ceremony also kicked off a new holiday celebration called Illumination Charleston. Illumination Charleston is a collaborative effort between Explore Charleston, Southern Living and Historic Charleston Foundation.

Organizers said the weekend-long event is a celebration of design, Southern culture and holiday décor through a variety of events.

“I think there is a way for us to be able to sensibly still gather and share and show comradery and a fellowship and celebrate the traditions of our city,” said Roualeyn de Haas, Director of Marketing for Historic Charleston Foundation.

With Illumination Charleston comes even more holiday décor in parts of the city like the Cistern Yard, Liberty Square, the Charleston Visitor Center and King Street.

For a full list of Illumination Charleston events, click here.