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Surely someone has attended the Lyon Festival of Lights--advice please

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I've become obsessed with the Lyon Fete des Lumieres, what appears to be an incredibly beautiful sound and light show of several days each year surrounding December 8. The public buildings in several of the city squares are lit up with a magical colored light show/story in commemoration of the city's connection to the Virgin Mary. See this explanation from Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fete_des_Lumieres and this Youtube video of this year's festival http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8W0EHLyQ8JU

I want to plan now to attend next year but I'd like to hear from someone who has actually been there about this spectacle. Do you need tickets? Are the crowds overwhelming making it actually better to see second hand rather than being there in person? I already know that hotel rooms go for a big premium at that time, but that is to be expected. I'd appreciate hearing any helpful hints someone who has attended this can provide. Thanks.

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