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Festival Of Lights In Banning

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Kick off the Holiday Season November 20, during the Banning Cultural Alliance's, Sixth Annual Phineas Festival of Lights, in downtown Banning.

This years street fair event hour are extended from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will feature tons of snow for winter fun, with downtown tours, fire truck rides, live entertainment, a craft fair and art and craft demonstrations, refreshments, and of course a visit from Santa Claus.

The Phineas Festival honors the city's namesake, an American businessman, financier, and entrepreneur: Phineas T. Banning, who lived from 1830 -1885.

Admission to the event is free. Free is also the price at the Historic Fox Cinneplex that will offer 400 free movie tickets starting at 9:30 a.m.; to a special presentation of "White Christmas" (which is rumored to have been written in Banning, by Irving Berlin) and "The Polar Express."

The event culminates with the annual tree-lighting ceremony for the City of Banning, at the Ring of Honor on the corner of Ramsey and San Gorgonio Avenue.

"The Sixth Annual Phineas Festival of Lights is a one-day community event celebrating the start of the holiday season," said Carol Newkirk executive director with the Alliance.

"Together we celebrate our community and the upcoming holidays," she added. "Start your day with a movie and finish with a song at the tree lighting ceremony," invites Newkirk.

The Banning Cultural Alliance, is a volunteer organization whose mission is to provide education about, and support for art and culture in Banning.

"We are so thankful to the City of Banning and it's residents for their continued support in allowing us to provide such events free to the public," said Newkirk.

Partially supported by the City of Banning, additional sponsors for this event include the Banning Chamber of Commerce, the Bank of Hemet and for the first time Sun Lakes Charities, according to Alliance officials.

Alliance officials also wish to thank the Historic Fox Cinneplex that has partnered with the Alliance for the festival providing 400 seats, at two free movies during the festival.

"The Alliance believes the health of a city can be judged by the cultural and leisure time activities offered to its citizens," according their website: BanningCulturalAlliance.org

To find the Phineas Festival, take I-10 to Eighth Street in Banning and follow signs.

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