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Mark your calendars for the Grand Illumination downtown

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RICHMOND, Va. – In 44 days, at 5:59 p.m., the city landscape will be brightened by the Grand Illumination, and the holiday season can officially commence.

The big celebration takes place on Dec. 4, downtown at the James Center.

The switch flips just before 6 p.m. and the celebration continues through the night with entertainment by Big Ray and the Kool Kats, VCU’s Pep Band: The Peppas, Virginia Repertory Theatre’s Cast of Gypsy, Richmond Boys Choir, The American Youth Harp Ensemble, characters from the Nutcracker cast, Snow Bear, the VCU Trombone Choir, The Coventry Handbells from Bon Air Baptist Church, Singer Patsy Butler, and the the Virginia Piedmont & Central HO Model Railroad Club.

Additionally, for the 4th year the James Center hopes to bring awareness to Greater Richmond SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now).

SCAN will be at Grand Illumination collecting toys for 200 Richmond area children. During the holiday season, these children will be coming to James Center so their parents or guardians can “shop” for gifts.

From Dec. 4 until Dec. 11, unwrapped gifts for children, up to the age of 17, can be dropped off at the collection sleigh located in the Three James Center Lobby.