Christmas Festival of Lights

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Enjoying Christmas Festival of Lights displays in Minnesota cities are memorable Christmas vacation ideas.

Christmas Festival of Lights in Duluth, Minnesota

Bentleyville, overlooks the harbor in Duluth.  Twenty acres of winter wonderland invites guests to enjoy the twinkle of 4 million lights. 

  • Enjoy complimentary cookies, popcorn, hot cocoa, and roasted marshmallows.
  • Visit with Santa and have your photo snapped with Rudolph.
  • Mrs. Claus shares stories and candy canes.
  • Listen to holiday music while gliding across the skating rink.
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Rice Park in downtown St. Paul becomes a Christmas festival of lights in late November. 

Christmast Festival of Lights in Saint Paul, MN

The official tree lighting initiates the celebration and Rice Park in Saint Paul comes alive with twinkling lights. The historic Landmark Center hosts special holiday events during the Christmas season.

A free outdoor ice skating rink draws hundreds to this classic Christmas scene. Once the Christmas season is over, the Saint Paul Winter Carnival begins and Rice Park looks even more festive with the addition of ice sculptures.


Christmas Festival of Lights in East St. Paul, MN

Christmas Festival of Lights in St. Paul: This event is in Phalen Park, at 1615 Phalen Drive East St. Paul. Drive through more than 60 holiday-themed light displays. Open from 5:00 to 10 p.m. nightly from November 24th to January 1st.

Tickets $10 dollars per vehicle nightly at the park gate or purchase online:
    •    $8.00 vehicle ticket (online special); $10 in person, Cash Only at Gate!
    •    $15.00 per limo/passenger van/mini bus
    •    $30.00 per coach bus    

This holiday light display is a partnership between St Paul NECA and the St. Paul Police Foundation.: http://saintpaulpolicefoundation.com/holiday-lights

Other Holiday Light Displays in St. Paul:

Summit Avenue Christmas Lights: Summit Avenue is where some of the grandest Victorian homes in the Twin Cities were built, and homeowners along the avenue often decorate with classic Victorian style Christmas lights. The Governor's official home and Christmas Tree are at 1006 Summit Avenue.  The Governor's Residence is open for free public tours on four Thursdays: November 27, and December 4, 11 and 18, between 11 a.m and 1 p.m., to see the Governor's home, and the holiday decorations inside the mansion. 

Grand Avenue's Grand Meander and Holiday Lights: The shopping district is lined with restaurants, stores and boutiques; many have decorated storefronts. There are also lights along Grand Avenue itself.

South Saint Paul Holidaze Festival: Thursday December 6, South St. Paul holds the annual Holidaze Celebration, with music, carols, Santa, a mitten and hat drive, and the city's tree lighting ceremony at 6.45 p.m.

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Christmas Festival of Lights in Minneapolis, MN

Minneapolis: Macy's Santaland Holiday Show On Nicollet Avenue. This traditional Holiday window display and inside the store Macy's Santaland Holiday Show has enchanted children for generations. 

Holidazzle began as a Christmas Festival of Lights of lights with holiday parades. Last year the festival became Holiday Village and, this year, is partnering with Minneapolis Parks and Recreation to bring this holiday celebration to Loring Park. This family-friendly festival is free to attend. 

Holidazzle will begin the day after Thanksgiving and run through Sunday, December 20. It will be open Thursdays through Sunday, operating from 5 – 9 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sundays.


Taylor's Falls Christmas Festival of Lights: About an hour north of the Twin Cities, enjoy this three day annual Lighting Festival on November 23, 24 and 25 with parades, reindeer, music, food and entertainment. Experience the atmosphere of a Victorian Christmas in historic houses dressed for the season. The lights will stay up until Christmas. 


Inver Grove Heights, MN Festival of Holiday Lights. The citizens of Inver Grove Heights seem to love the holidays a little more than average, and the suburb of Inver Grove Heights is a popular destination for driving about and looking out for lights.

Tour in your own car, or take a Holiday Light Trolley on Main Street on Saturday December 15. The free trolley rides start at 6.30 p.m. after a day of festive entertainment in Inver Grove Heights. Tickets are required for the trolley rides - pick up a free ticket at Inver Grove Heights Parks and Recreation Office, Veterans Memorial Community Center or ACE Hardware. 


Personal Christmas Festival of Lights

Christmas Festival of Lights in Duluth, Minnesota
Many people say that the best Christmas lights in Minnesota is a spectacular family display in Willmar, Minnesota Chad Koosman's Christmas lights display — called “Celebrate the Light of the World” — was voted best in the state. The first display was 100,000 lights, but is now up to 400,000 lights that all dance to music.

Plymouth Lights: The Fischer family at 16700 33rd Ave North, in the suburb of Plymouth, has created one of the most legendary holiday light displays in the Twin Cities. The house has thousands of lights timed to flash and dance with Christmas music broadcast on an FM transmitter so you can hear it on a car radio. The display is up from early December until New Year's Eve.

On an Apple Valley street just a few miles West of the Minnesota Zoo, Mark and Esther Anderson share their spectacular light show synchronized to its very own radio station. The Anderson's say “We love to see the kids in the neighborhood dancing or the older folks getting a kick out of the display. It’s a way for us to spread the Christmas spirit.”

Prairie Lights Synchronized Lights links to dozens of light shows in towns all across Minnesota.


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