Hope joins Mayor to turn on lights

turning on of the lights
Hope Testro is excited to turn on the lights at Pageant of Lights.

The smile on Hope Testro’s face will be as bright as the Christmas lights when she and Mayor Jack Dempsey flick the switch at this Thursday’s Pageant of Lights.

The official turning on of the lights is an annual tradition that marks the beginning of the Pageant of Lights parade, illuminating the giant community Christmas Tree and CBD lights.

According to mum Alison, Christmas is Hope’s favourite time of the year, with the family already driving around looking at the Christmas displays. 

“There is much more Christmas spirit here in Bundaberg than our previous home – we love Christmas here and Hope is excited to be involved in turning on the lights,” Alison said.

Hope was born with Spina Bifida but hasn’t let that stop her.

“She soldiers on – she’s a brave little kid,” mum Alison said.

Hope is finishing Grade 6 at East State School soon and is looking forward to going to Kepnock State High School.

“Hope loves school and we love living in Bundaberg,” added Alison.

Mayor Jack Dempsey said it was an honour to assist Hope to turn on the lights.

“Hope is certainly a young girl who emulates the pride and spirit of Christmas,” Mayor Dempsey said.

“To have her in attendance at this special event and to allow us to share her story is very uplifting and a great inspiration for the entire community.

“Christmas lights are one of Hope’s greatest joys and I encourage everyone to come along to Pageant of Lights and share in the joy and excitement that marks the start of festive season.”

turning on of the lights
Mayor Jack Dempsey met with Hope Testro, her mother Alison Short and sister Ella, ahead of the official turning on of the lights at Pageant of Lights this Thursday

This Thursday, 5 December, the Pageant of Lights festivities begin at 5.30 pm, with the official welcome and turning on of the lights from 7 pm in Buss Park, next to the Council Chambers in Bourbong Street.

The parade will immediately follow the turning on of the lights, spreading the Christmas cheer all the way along Bourbong Street. Find out more here.

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