The Holiday Festival of Lights opens Nov. 10 at James Island County Park
CHARLESTON, SC [PRESS RELEASE] –- The beloved Holiday Festival of Lights returns to James Island County Park in November for its 28th year! Featuring an estimated two million shimmering lights, Charleston’s most popular holiday event opens for nightly admission Nov. 10, 2017.
More than four million people have toured the Holiday Festival of Lights, which is hosted by the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission at James Island County Park. The event has received many awards and mentions in publications throughout the country, and the three-mile driving tour delivers more excitement every year. The event will be open nightly starting at 5:30 p.m. through Jan. 1, 2018.
The Holiday Festival of Lights is known for its three-mile driving tour, but there is much more to see and do! Visitors are encouraged to park the car and experience family attractions, shopping, dining and more. Some of the other celebrated attractions and activities include:
• Marshmallow Roasting
• Festival Train Rides
• Interactive Lakeside Lights
• The Amazing Dancing Light Display
• Enchanted Walking Trail
• Old-Fashioned Carousel
• Portable Climbing Wall
• Santa’s Sweet Shoppe
• Concessions including hamburgers, kettle corn, hot chocolate and more
• Four Gift Shops, featuring the children’s toy emporium Prancer’s Presents
• Daytime photo opportunities to “Mingle with Kringle” (register in advance)
• Entertainment on select evenings, including the Footlight Players performing an excerpt from “Annie” (see listing below)
In Winter Wonderland, see a meticulously crafted sculpture constructed with 50 tons of sand. Wander through festival shops for unique gifts, official 14-kt gold on brass collector series ornaments, toys, personalized items, decorations and stocking stuffers. Hop aboard the festival train for an intimate look at the festival, only seen on this enchanted ride.
Explore Santa’s Village, where the man himself is available for photos on select dates, starting the day before Thanksgiving. Take a whirl on the traditional 18-animal carousel, make s’mores at the marshmallow roasting pits, and marvel at giant 4-by-8 holiday greeting card designs created by local students for the annual art competition. Enjoy entertainment on select nights, including live music, storytelling, visits with Mrs. Claus, carolers, outdoor movies and more.
What’s every family’s best bet for savings at the Holiday Festival of Lights? Join us on our evenings benefitting the Lowcountry Food Bank – every Monday through Thursday! Bring a canned food item (dog and cat food also accepted) on these nights to receive discounted admission.
For more information on the Holiday Festival of Lights, including event hours and fees, call 843-795-4386 or visit HolidayFestivalofLights.com. This event is presented by The Boeing Company and Your Charleston County Parks.
Holiday Festival of Lights Special Events Calendar
Most performances take place in Santa’s Village; visit HolidayFestivalofLights.com for details and updates.
Nov. 10: Grand Opening Night! Enjoy live music from Lowcountry Powerbrass (7-9 p.m.) and the awards presentation for the winners of the Giant Greeting Card contest. Ticketed Supper with Santa event to benefit The Parklands Foundation, 5:30 – 9 p.m.
Nov. 11: The Charleston Community Jazz Band, 7-9 p.m.
Nov. 12: Charleston Sparks Dance Team, performances at 6 & 7 p.m.
Nov. 13: First night to save $5 off admission when you bring a canned food item for donation to the Lowcountry Food Bank. Canned dog or cat food also accepted. Discount offered every Monday through Thursday, Nov. 13 through Dec. 28.
Nov. 16: Ask a Caw Caw Naturalist – Visit with a naturalist from Caw Caw Interpretive Center! Discover what animals do when temperatures drop. 6 p.m.
Nov. 17: Outdoor Movie Night – Bring a chair and a blanket and kick back to watch a family holiday film! Continuous shows starting at 6 p.m. in Santa’s Village. Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Nov. 18: Outdoor Movie Night – Continuous shows starting at 6 p.m. in Santa’s Village.
Nov. 22: Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m. Lowcountry Power Brass performance, 7-9 p.m.
Nightly Nov. 22 – Dec. 23: Santa Claus is at the festival nightly in Santa’s Village! Families and dogs are invited for photos.
Nov. 25: The Footlight Players, performing an excerpt from Annie.
Nov. 26: Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m.
Nov. 29: Starlight Yoga – The moon and stars enhance this flowing yoga class. 6:30 p.m.
Nov. 30: Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Dec. 1: Storytelling with the South Carolina Stingrays, 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m. Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Dec. 2: School of the Arts performance, 6 and 7 p.m.
Dec. 3: School of the Arts performance, 6 and 7 p.m.
Dec. 5: School of the Arts performance, 6 and 7 p.m.
Dec. 7: Visit with the South Carolina Aquarium, 6-8 p.m. Lowcountry Power Brass performance, 7- 9 p.m.
Dec. 8: Storytelling with the Charleston Animal Society, 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m.
Dec. 9: Holiday Carolers, 6–8 p.m.
Dec. 10: Juggling Elves, 7:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Dec. 11: Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m.
Dec. 13: Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m.
Dec. 14: Lowcountry Power Brass performance, 7-9 p.m. Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Dec. 15: Storytelling with the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office, 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. Visit with the South Carolina Aquarium, 6-8 p.m. Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Dec. 16: Holiday Carolers, 6–8 p.m. Little Dickens Carolers, 6:30 & 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 17: Walk Around Magic with Julie, 7-9 p.m.
Dec. 20: Visit with Mrs. Claus, 6-10 p.m.
Dec. 28: Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Dec. 29: Ask a Naturalist, 6 p.m.
Dec. 31: Balloon Artist, 6-9 p.m., and Fireworks at the Holiday Festival of Lights, 9 p.m.