Arts & Entertainment

Luminaria lights up Dec. 19

For 22 years the Desert Plateau neighborhood in Pasco has used a low-tech way to celebrate Christmas.

This year will be no different as residents plan to light 25,000 candles in little white sacks along the streets when the luminaria gets under way Dec. 19. Organizers say visitors also "are in for a few new wrinkles this year."

Santa and some elves are expected to be seen strolling around handing out candy canes. There's also a chance you'll hear some carolers.

"People can certainly drive through the neighborhood, but walking is perhaps the most enjoyable," said Terry Maurer, a Desert Plateau resident. "In fact, for those who are walking you could run into a house party and be invited in to join the festivities."

Desert Plateau luminaria started in 1987 when the neighborhood was young with only a few streets lighting up for the event.

Today, the participation has increased to 900 homes between Yuma Drive and Road 36 and Meadow View Drive and Burden Boulevard.

"We do ask that for those people who prefer to drive throughout the neighborhoods, to please do it slowly and carefully," Maurer said.

The bags are lit at 6 p.m. and take about three hours to die out. Parking is available at McGee Elementary School.

◗ Dori O'Neal: 582-1514;