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Musical holiday walk around the lake 

The homes around Atascadero Lake get lit up for the annual Musical Holiday Walk Around the Lake.

The homes around Atascadero Lake get lit up for the annual Musical Holiday Walk Around the Lake.

Weather forecasts shows clear skies Saturday evening

For the 16th year in a row, the community surrounding the Atascadero Lake — the Atascadero Lake Neighborhood Association — is celebrating the holiday season with a musical walk around the lake — though it now resembles a mud hole more than an actual lake — on Saturday, Dec. 6. The Atascadero High School Marching Band will kick off the event at 5:30 p.m. when it marches around the lake, playing a few songs.

Many of the homes around the lake will be lit up and organizations — mostly churches and other religious musical groups — will perform holiday music on the street in front of residences. Other groups, including the city of Atascadero, will serve cookies, hot drinks and have a fire pit for people to warm up around. The walk portion takes place from 5:30 to 9 p.m. with the featured entertainment — Atascadero High School Band, choir and drama departments performing in the Pavilion on the Lake from 6 to 9:30 p.m.

“I like running into other families from the community that we know. That’s probably why I go,” said Atascadero resident Amy Foster, who will attend this year’s event with her husband, Dan, and their sons, Kyle and Riley,  “We like all the booths with their little goodies. It’s fun for the kids. We also like hearing the people sing.”

Organizer Barbara Combs said that hot cider, popcorn and other refreshments will be available as attendees walk around the lake. The Charles Paddock will also be open with free admission that night — Santa may be make an appearance in the gift shop. Because Atascadero has received rain off and on this week, Combs said that if there is steady rain prior to or during the event, some of the street activities may be cancelled, however, the entertainment in the pavilion will go on regardless.

Some of the comments Combs said she’s gotten over the years about the event include: “It’s truly a spiritual events,” “Lights and decorations on the homes are wonderful,” and “It reminds me of the real meaning of the season.”

“The purpose of this event is to celebrate the holiday season and bring people together in song and joy at Atascadero Lake,” Combs said, adding that there will be more than 20 local choirs, bands and other musical groups performing in and around the pavilion. Additionally, Awanas will put on a family puppet show, there will be karaoke for the family at two locations. To get the lake ready for an influx of holiday visitors walking in the dark evening, Boy Scouts from Troop 155 will light the path with luminaries. She said that there will more fire pits around the lake than there has been in the past.

Combs recommends that attendees dress warmly and bring a flashlight because some parts of the walk around very dark. Parking is available in the zoo’s main parking lot off Morro Road, in the pavilion lot, and by the baseball field and the Faces of Freedom Veterans’ Memorial. For more information, go to, email or call 805-550-3147. While the event is free and open to the public, donations are accepted to help keep the event going.

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