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Details for annual ERDC Under the Lights announced

For the fourth consecutive year, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Research and Development Center will open its gates to the public for a holiday light display on its 700-acre installation in Vicksburg.

The annual event will begin on Dec. 17 and continue through Dec. 19. The show will go from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. each night. The entrance will be the main gate located at 3909 Halls Ferry Road.

“This has become a great tradition for people in the Vicksburg area, and we’re excited to keep it going this year,” said Col. Teresa Schlosser, ERDC commander. “And this year, we have the added benefit that it is such a safe, socially distant Christmas activity for families.”

One goal of the event is to assist local families in need. Guests are encouraged to bring one canned good or one toy to be donated to people in need around the Vicksburg area.

ERDC collaborates with local community organizations to distribute the donations. Last year, more than 6,000 pounds of food were collected and donated to the local food pantry, an increase of about 2,000 pounds from the year before.

“Each year, ERDC Under the Lights grows a little more,” Schlosser said. “The more people who come, the more good we can do with food and toy donations.”

Students from the Vicksburg-Warren School District will also help with the event this year, collecting food items and toys at the gate.