[Published in the November 2017 edition of the North Tatum Times}
‘Tis the season for the wonders and magic of holiday light shows! Whether you celebrate Diwali, Hanukkah, Kwanza or Christmas, beautiful and festive lights are probably a big part of your holiday celebrations. Nothing warms the heart on a cold evening in the desert like the twinkling glow of lights, on display to celebrate the holidays. Here is a list the light shows on our list to visit this year.
One of our favorite holiday traditions is visiting the Desert Botanical Garden to see Las Noches de las Luminarias. This year, there will be more than 8000 hand-lit luminaria bags lining many of the trails throughout the Garden. The lovely, twinkling pathways lead to 10 different musical entertainment areas, and dinner and warm refreshments `are available each night – a perfect event to celebrate the beauty and magic of the holiday season.
Dates: Nov. 24 & 25, Dec. 8-10, 15-17, 19-23, 26-30.
Times: 5:30 – 9:30 p.m.
ZooLights at the Phoenix Zoo is a fantastic display of holiday lights set to holiday music, with a delightful walk through the zoo. This year, ZooLights will also feature a nightly snowfall, photos with Santa, carousel and camel rides and the new Dinosaurs in the Desert display. A perennial favorite and a family tradition, ZooLights is the bright light, high-energy, loud music answer to the peaceful, gentle, serene setting of the Desert Botanical Garden’s Luminarias display next door. A festive, fun way to celebrate the season, ZooLights is worth a visit.
Dates: November 22, 2017 – January 14, 2018
Times: 5:30 – 10:30 p.m.
The Lights of the World event provides an international flavor to holiday festivities at their location in the Arizona State Fairgrounds. The event hosts a celebration of light highlighting cultures and civilizations from around the world, displayed using a traditional Chinese lantern festival. The Lights of the World promises “an unforgettable exploration of global cultures and cuisine,” and features carnival rides and games, with a daily performance of acrobatics, dance, and music concerts, in addition to the light show. This year’s event in Phoenix is billed as the largest Lantern Festival produced in the world – and it is definitely on our list of festive light celebrations to visit this holiday season.
Dates: November 16, 2017 – January 2, 2018 (Closed December 26, 2017)
Times: 5:00 – 10:00 p.m.
New this year, the Illumination light display looks like a must-see for the holiday season. Located in North Phoenix (off of the Black Canyon Freeway, just north of Jomax), Illumination boasts they are “Arizona’s Largest Holiday Drive-Through Light Show.” Visitors to the light show drive down “Holiday Boulevard” to immerse themselves in millions of twinkling lights synchronized to holiday music. It looks like a fascinating celebration of light, and we’ve definitely added it to this year’s list of holiday light venues.
Dates: November 15, 2017 through January 14, 2018.
Times: 6:00 – 10:30 p.m. (Sunday-Thursday), 11:30 p.m. (Friday, Saturday & Holidays)
Glendale Glitters is an award-winning holiday tradition for people all over the Valley. The twinkling light display is in it’s 20th year this holiday season, and will illuminate 16 blocks of Historic Downtown Glendale. This festive display is the largest free holiday light display in Arizona. A heart-warming seasonal celebration for all ages, Glendale Glitters is a great place to enjoy the festive lights of the holidays this year.
Dates: November 24, 2017 to January 6, 2018
Times: 6 p.m.-10 p.m.
These holiday light displays are just a few of the many that take place around the Valley, but each will definitely make great memories while you celebrate the season. What are your favorite light displays? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Happy Holidays and Peace be With You!