The holiday season has officially arrived in Tuscaloosa with the Christmas tree lighting ceremony followed by the West Alabama Christmas Parade.

A couple hundred residents from around Tuscaloosa County came out to the courthouse on Monday night for the festivities. The event kicked off at 5:15 PM with Christmas caroling by area children.

After 20 minutes of singing, the two grand marshals for the parade were brought up to flip the switch. The crowd counted down from five and then Tommy Hester and Jim Lawson brought the christmas tree to life. The people watching gave the beautiful 30-foot tall tree a round of applause.

The parade began shortly after and lasted about 90 minutes. The route ran down Greensboro Avenue and onto University Boulevard.