Christmas is a pretty interesting time here in Lakeland. Apparently, because it's so freaking hot, everyone has to really go all out to get into the feeling of Christmas.
It's still totally warm out - like the low 80's, but everyone still tries to make it seem like the traditional holiday season.
This place is pretty cool though - there's a church right up the road from us (Highland Park Church of the Nazarene)... and they put on this cool Christmas show every year, for free. So we all walked down to it.
It's called the 'Lights of Lakeland'.
The 'lights' part was okay, but what I really liked was the life-like downtown Jerusalem. They even had real, live camels. So that was pretty cool.
Here's a few shots. It was pretty low light, so we just had to make due...
This first one is the Angel Gabriel announcing the birth story of Jesus.
This is a shot of the 3 Wise Men speaking with King Herod, trying to find out where the Baby Jesus had been born. Fortunately the 3 Wise Men decided NOT to listen to Kind Herod, who wanted to kill Jesus, and they left without telling the King where they had found Jesus. The live camel on the right of the picture was totally amazing to see right here in Lakeland - let me tell you... I wasn't expecting to see one.
Here's a shot of Joseph and Mary holding their newborn baby Jesus. They, of course, had to stay in a manger because there was no room in the inn.
And finally, here's the angel announcing the birth of Christ to the shepherds out in the fields around Jerusalem.
And Happy New Year!