Last night I went down with Rhiannon to the streets next to City Hall to watch the Christmas Lights Switch On. After last year's event it seemed a bit low key and quiet. Well, I am comparing it to this video of the switch on being performed by Gavin & Stacey's Nessa and Bryn. Thanks Kaciemorgan99:

Instead, we had jazz-laden Christmas tunes from the Red Hot Santas: Rhiannon and I sang along to Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. Then we had the joy of sing-a-long with Barney the Purple Dinosaur, with the lights being turned on by the embarrassed-looking cast from BBC Wales' TV show Merlin. The small crowd around the stage screamed the most for Barney - and then all sang "if you're happy and you know it, clap your hands".

(Barney on stage)

It was quite a bizzare evening's entertainment, capped off with a few really lovely cups of mulled wine and a plate of undercooked chips and beans.

We are saving the toffee apples for when we manage to get on the "John Lewis Wheel" as the Cardiff-Eye is termed. Plans are to go next week! Oh and the Ice Rink area is called the "BmiBaby Cardiff Winterwonderland". The poor Red Dragon FM presenters had to say these mouthful things ad-nauseum every 5 minutes. So why was the evening so..."flat" and unchristmassy? Maybe the event was soured by the centering on the sponsorship-name-calling? Did we really have the same great family entertainment, as seemed to happen last year? I don't know. Maybe I would have felt better if the mulled wine had been made available to buy before and during the event? Was anyone else there to comment?

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Comment by James Craig on November 16, 2009 at 14:51
Yeah I was there Catherine. It was distinctly un-Christmassy, and the choice of entertainment was bizarre! What does Barney have to do with Christmas? Is he even on kids tv anymore? Don't even get me started on his giggling and 'dancing'.

I think Rhiannon is right. A combination of having the turn on too early (why not do it at the start of December, make it more of a gimmick?) and mediocre entertainment meant the night fell a little short.

Nice fireworks though!
Comment by Rhiannon Davis on November 13, 2009 at 13:32
I think the "un-Christmassy" feel was largely attributable to the fact that it's still 6 weeks before Christmas! The celebrations start too soon nowadays!

I felt sorry for the cast members of Merlin who were given the most cheesy and cringe-inducing task of switching on the lights by inducing the less-than-enthusiastic crowd to incant a "spell" which would illuminate Cardiff.

Unfortunately, the lights in this "switch on" area could only be described as pathetic - thank goodness for the fireworks, and the mulled wine and hot pork roll that followed!

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