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Tree of Hope will light up the night

It is one of the most beautiful and special tree lighting ceremonies in town. The Tree of Hope lighting at Roswell Park Cancer Institute is much more than just plugging in a tree. It is a sign of hope for all of those touched by cancer; and there are many.

The event takes place from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Dec. 11 at the corner of Elm and Carlton streets, and it will be a sparkling and dazzling display of lights -- 75,000 animated bulbs set to holiday music. There is a gingerbread house contest, carriage rides, live music, ice sculpting, hot chocolate, donuts and a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus. It is a magical night and it is all free.

This year, the button will be pushed by 12-year-old Stella Usiak from North Tonawanda who was diagnosed with leukemia in 2011. She relapsed in September, 2014 and continues to fight the disease with grace and courage. She is extremely excited to light the Tree of Hope.

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