How’s your new year unfolding? Today was one of the first bitterly cold days we’ve had in a while. We’ve had snow flurries almost all day and that has reminded me of my recent visit to Winterlights. This is an outdoor Christmas light extravaganza hosted by our local art museum and garden. It debuted last year and was wonderful. Mom and I went earlier in December and were hoping for a return trip. But then it was sold out for the week between Christmas and New Years. We were able to get tickets after the New Year though and it was a lovely activity to boost the spirits after the excitement of Christmas had gone and the usual schedule was in place again. Tonight thought it would be nice to share some photos of the decorated landscape.
Upon getting through the queue, a visitor finds oneself in WinterMarket, which is a large indoor room where you can buy goodies, warm drinks, and hot food with which to fortify you for the frosty outdoor adventures. You bundle up, head through the glass doors, and find yourself in fairyland.
Snowflake bridge is the first display and it’s one of my favorites. Lit snowflakes dance in the air, and projected snowflakes decorate the walkway.
It is magical and these lit pillars cast beautiful patterns on the ground – I’m fascinated by them.
The next display is a choreographed light show of dazzlement set to the Nutcracker suite. In the background is the majestic Lilly house, which anchors the many Christmas trees, globes, and ground lights that flicker on and off with the music. I love to watch the lights dance with the ballet music.
The Lilly house is open during the evening and stunningly mantled in holiday glory. I was delightfully surprised to find that the decorations were different from last year. The only fitting word for the inside is … enchanting. The foyer is transformed into a wintry forest of birch trees adorned with paper chains and ornaments. It was breathtaking.
The library was crowned with a stately Christmas tree in the bay windows and decorated with more paper chains and candles.
The music room was a whimsical flurry of paper birds and butterflies. Here are a fluttering group of them about the piano. The Christmas tree was in this room was filled with paper butterflies and ornaments. It’s hard to have a favorite room in this Winter Wonderland but this room was absolutely lovely.
However, the dining room might have been the piece de resistance. Paper chains cascaded from the chandelier to fall in piles all around the room. They were interlaced with each other and draped about the furniture in a riotous cascade. The table itself was adorned with red and white paper poinsettia. Billows of paper chain fell on the smaller side tables and looked like snow drifts burying the white narcissus blooms.
I’ve never seen anything like this before. I had no idea the humble paper chain could be elevated to “magical Christmas fairy-land”. My deepest congratulations and thanks to the design team who created this wonderland of beauty. Then we’re off outside again to see gardens festooned with lighted flowering trees and curtains of lights that shifted color in the wind, a large Christmas tree made entirely of plastic toys and illuminated from the inside, and a “winter storm” lighted walkway. Between all these frosty, twinkling exhibits are warming stations where you can stop to take the chill off, a kissing arbor wrapped in winter greens and mistletoe, drink stations, and my favorite…. smore stations! Here you can buy smore kits and make your own treat!!
It makes for a festive evening where even I start to think that winter just might be a wonderful season of delight. When it’s time to close you follow the path back underneath the twinkling snowflakes while carols softly serenade you.
Once back inside, one must take a few moments to appreciate the snowy white Christmas orchids.
On the way out to the parking lot you can look up in wonderment at the atrium where several lighted trees are suspended from the ceiling, draped in lights and ornaments. They are made all the more amazing by the lights that hang down from the base of the tree.
No doubt about it, it has been a magical night and thank you for sharing it with me.
Blessings to you,