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ST. JAMES PARISH – Officials in St. James Parish are making final preparations for the annual Christmas Eve bonfires.

According to a statement released Friday, officials say a total of 138 permits were issues this year to construct a bonfire along the Mississippi River levee.

“Christmas Eve is an exciting time in St. James Parish,” Parish President Timmy Roussel said. “Our residents look forward to sharing our local tradition with visitors from near and far.”

Residents have been building the structures, some as high as 15 feet, since Thanksgiving. All 138 bonfires will be lit simultaneously at 7 p.m. on December 24. 

Anyone interested in watching the celebration should arrive before 6 p.m. along Highway 641. You can also drive along River Road through Gramercy, Lutcher and Paulina to see the burning bonfires.

Take La. Hwy. 3213 South to the Reserve, Gramercy and Lutcher La. Hwy. 44 exit, which is located just before reaching the Veterans Memorial Bridge. From there, turn right onto La. Hwy. 44 (River Road).

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