HIGH POINT, N.C. -- About 9,000 people attended the first of two nights of High Point University's fifth annual Community Christmas Celebration.
The university opens their doors to the public to help celebrate the season.
"The purpose for the season is the birth of Jesus Christ," said HPU President Nido Qubein. "That's why we have the nativity to give God the glory for all the blessings in our life."
The completely free event includes Clydesdale carriage rides, community choirs, a life-size nativity, photos with Santa Clauses and food.
They even have machines putting down artificial snow around campus. The campus is decorated with 86,000 lights, more than 11,000 feet of garland, hundreds of banners and bows and 12 Christmas trees.
The event continues Friday from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., and it is free and open to the public. Free shuttles that run from Oak Hollow Mall are the fastest way to enter campus.