A few dozen people braved the whipping wind and filed out of nearby businesses, shivering against walls and inside doorways waiting for the countdown to 7:15 p.m., and the illumination of downtown Hastings.
Temperatures well below freezing, made even colder by strong gusts of wind that tossed snowflakes that were falling, kept attendance at the 24th annual Celebration of Lights well below normal. Those who were there scattered back inside as soon as the lights turned on.
The more than four miles of white LED lights lining roofs and light poles took Randi Weaver of Best Tree Service several weeks leading up to Thursday to hang.
Still, the weather didn’t stop people who were downtown from having fun.