Friday, Dec. 6 is the best evening of the season to go for a stroll in downtown Greensboro.

Or it’s the best evening – unless you are looking for solitude – because there’ll be music, marshmallows, beer, snow, Santa, food trucks, pretty much everything except solitude.

Friday, Dec. 6 is the Festival of Lights in downtown Greensboro.

A holiday tradition for more than 30 years, the Festival of Lights fills the downtown with music, food, beverages and people of all ages.

The festival officially begins at 5:30 or 6 p.m., depending on which publication you want to believe. But whether it is before the official opening or not, the music at Center City Park begins at 5:30 with the NC A&T State University Fellowship Gospel Choir, followed by a Community Sing Along with Wally West beginning at 6:30 and, what some people consider the highlight of the Festival of Lights, the lighting of the Christmas tree at 6:56.

In LeBauer Park, the UNCG Horn Choir and Tuba Band will be performing and the ice rink will be open.

There will be musical groups performing all down South Elm Street, and Hamburger Square (the intersection of Elm and McGee streets) will be a Winter Wonderland complete with snow, whatever the weather is in the rest of Greensboro.

Strollers can continue down Elm Street as far as Gate City Boulevard, the southern border of the Festival of Lights.

Parts of Elm, Market, Friendly, February One, Washington, McGee and Smothers Place will be blocked to traffic after 6 p.m. and there is no parking on South Elm after 2 p.m. on Friday.