6 Holiday Light Displays to Get You in a Festive Spirit
Snow on the ground, warming weather and dark nights are perfect conditions for looking at lights.
‘Tis the season when the city lights up and our buildings and parks sparkle and shine – sometimes to music. City Hall has hung its glowing bulbs and lit its fountain. Stephen Avenue is all aglow. And, these 6 displays are worth at least a drive-by or walk-through to get you in the holiday spirit.
This massive display is over five acres in Airdrie’s Nose Creek Park. There are crafts, choirs and skating at Nose Creek Pond. Sip on hot chocolate and get warm by the bonfires. If walking isn’t your thing, hop on the train for $2 to get a tour of the display. The festival goes from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. every night until December 31.
This is a drive-by light display along 14th Street Northwest south of 24 Avenue. It’s created by volunteers and includes more than 105,000 lights. Tack this one on to your tour of some of the residential displays. Lions Festival of Lights is on until January 8.
This website will guide you to the best residential light displays in Calgary and you can register to put your own house on the map. A few highlights include David Stokes’ house at 55 Coventry Road Northeast with 12,000 LED lights, shooting stars and strobe lights all set to music on 99.9 FM. Or, go to 76 Grafton Crescent in Glamorgan for 38,000 lights including stars and strobes set to music on 101.9 FM.
Qualico’s showhomes in Dressage, Evanston and Ravenswood are lit up with thousands of lights that are synchronized to music on 97.3 FM. The 20-minute show is on repeat every night from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
This one isn’t strictly for the holidays, but it is new and pretty cool. Seton is a neighbourhood-in-progress deep in the south and now it has LED lights all over it. Its sign, pavilion, bike path, entrances, walkways and tower are covered in all combinations of red, green and blue lights that are programmed according to the season. In the winter, the lights take on a Northern Lights look. In the spring and summer, the lights are pastel colours, while autumn is reds, oranges and soft yellows. At Christmas all the colours are used to make the shopping area festive. The whole thing was designed by engineer Ken Lundin and is powered by Calgary’s largest solar panel system.
Zoolights is pretty much a holiday must-do, especially if you have kids. There are more than 1.5 million lights strung in the zoo including some shaped like dancing animals and others swagged to create Candy Cane Lane. This year there is ice skating and a 16-foot voice activated tree of lights. The conservatory has been turned into Santa’s Oasis, which means the fire pits aren’t your only options to warm up. Zoolights go until January 3. Admission is $11 to $14 and can be purchased in advance at calgaryzoo.com.