Maryland is home to more than a few great places to enjoy Christmas holiday light displays. Below are four of the best in the entire state.
Prince Georges County Festival of Lights at Watkins Park
Nov. 24 to Jan. 1
The 31st annual Festival of Lights held yearly in Watkins Park is a great way to get in the holiday spirit. More than one million holiday lights and hundreds of displays will be showcased from November 24 until New Year’s Day. Park visitors will have the opportunity to be dazzled by a spectacular drive-through display, which features the tallest tree displays in the area.
The annual event is sponsored by The Department of Parks and Recreation. It costs just $10 to experience, and the festival is free on Christmas. Multi-visit (three) tickets are also available for $15, mini bus tickets are $20, and bus tickets $30. Patrons are encouraged to bring canned food items to be donated to local food banks. Visit P.G. Parks’ website for more info.
Brookside Garden of Lights
Nov. 24 to Jan. 1
Also beginning on November 24 and running until New Year’s Day, Montgomery Parks’ annual Garden of Lights at Wheaton Regional Park will feature a spectacular display of more than one million lights which depict nature, animals and flowers in the park’s gardens. Visitors can also enjoy model trains inside the park’s Conservatory.
Grab a hot cup of cocoa at the Visitor’s Center, and enjoy musical performances taking place nightly — except for on Christmas Eve and Day, when the park will be closed. Soups and sandwiches will also be available, as will the chance to do some last-minute Christmas shopping in the gift shops. Admission is $25 per car Sundays through Thursdays, and $30 on the weekend. Passenger bus, van and limo tickets are also available. For more info, visit Montgomery Parks’ website.
Winterfest of Lights Ocean City
Nov. 15 to Dec. 31
Running from November 15 through New Year’s Eve, Ocean City’s Winterfest of Lights is another of Maryland’s most impressive holiday light displays. Winterfest of Lights displays over one million lights as well as hundreds of animated displays in the town’s Northside Park. The festival is a one-mile, 58-acre display that features a 50-foot Christmas tree.
For just $5, visitors 12 and older can board the park train; kids under 12 are free. On New Year’s Eve, the town of Ocean City hosts an annual fireworks display and celebration, which is complemented by live entertainment as visitors count down the New Year. Visit the event’s website for more info.
Lights on the Bay
Nov. 18 to Jan. 1
Anne Arundel County’s annual Lights on the Bay at Sandy Point State Park begins on November 18 and runs through January 1. The event gives visitors the chance to enjoy a scenic two-mile drive that displays more than 70 stationary and animated Christmas displays that light up the road along the Chesapeake Bay. There are two themes this year: Enchanted Fairy Tales and North Pole Village.
The park will be hosting nightly scavenger hunts for kids where prizes can be won. Visit Santa at the park on Thanksgiving. Lights on the Bay can be enjoyed by the whole family for $15 per car. Passenger buses and mini bus admission is $30, and standard size buses can enter for just $50. December 1 is Military Appreciation Day, which grants military members $7 discounted admission per car. Visit the event’s website for more info.
Which of the above events are you looking forward to the most? Have you gone in previous years? Let us know in the comments below.