Christmas time is on the horizon for Carolina. If you couldn’t tell that from the slightly less humid weather, events like Charleston County Park’s Holiday Festival of Lights are here just in time to spread the holiday spirit.
Celebrating its 29th year, the Fantasy of Lights is a nearly two-month long event that replaces James Island County Park’s usual attractions with holiday festivities. The celebration has acres of light displays as well as a chance to meet with Santa, shop for commemorative ornaments and roast marshmallows over fire.
The dazzling light display is made up of over a million light bulbs creating 700 masterpieces. Many of the scenes, of course, exude the Christmas spirit, but there is also a light-up Ravenel Bridge, a jurassic themed area and my favorite: the entire solar system complete with UFO and alien.
Besides the main attraction, the lights, the section deemed for children was gigantic. While a little tram weaved its way through the festival, kids took a ride on a classic carousel, climbed up a rock wall and were even able to pick out stuffed animals to create, a la Build-a-Bear.
Despite all of the commotion, I enjoyed walking around, checking out the lights and soaking up other people’s happiness. At a time for joy and generosity, Charleston County Parks are bringing people together for some holiday fun under the stars and reminding them of the happiness of the season.
The James Island Festival of Lights had its inaugural night on Nov. 9 and will run until Jan. 1, giving you plenty of time to check it out. I can’t recommend it enough. It was the perfect evening to get me excited for the holidays.
The festival is also raising donations for the Lowcountry Food Bank to continue the season of giving. Be sure to bring a canned good for $5 off admission and to help out others this holiday season.