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The Lights of Christmas 2015 – a season of blessing

“Welcome to a Christmas wonderland!” exclaimed one young guest in describing The Lights of Christmas, at Warm Beach Camp in Stanwood, WA. The annual holiday festival held in December, treated guests to magnificent light displays,grand Christmas music, fun children’s activities, live theater, hot fresh donuts, and much more. Friends and families gathered around the warming fires kindling relationship. Children laughed with delight at Bruce the Spruce the talking Christmas tree. Grown-ups and kids alike waved at strangers as they took the train around the event. The Lights of Christmas celebrated the faith, love, and hope of the season with beauty, pageantry, and joy.

The weather has been fairly mild and dry for the past six years – not so for 2016. Rain, wind, or showers graced us 10 out of 19 nights. However, the spirits of guests were not dampened as just over 68,000 people attended The Lights of Christmas, making 2015 the third highest attendance on record!

“We are thankful for hundreds of staff and volunteers who gave one or more nights to make The Lights of Christmas possible.” said Patrick Patterson, Warm Beach Camp General Manager. Intrepid parking attendants braved the night-time weather directing thousands of cars. Security staff walked miles each night. Greeters, ticket sellers, and retail clerks welcomed thousands each night. One of the truly distinguishing features of The Lights of Christmas is the staff. Over and over again, guests comment about the heart-felt hospitality that makes The Lights of Christmas a welcoming, encouraging, and blessed event.

Many gifts are given at Christmas time. Perhaps, some of the best are memorable times– love, laughter, and life together. Our prayer is that God’s Spirit would use The Lights of Christmas to do His work of healing, reconciling, and redeeming. The hospitality, beauty, and fun experiences lay the groundwork for the deeper message of Christmas to take root in people’s hearts.

Plans are underway for this year’s 20th year celebration for The Lights of Christmas! Registration for Overnight Getaways and Holiday Theatre opens on May 3, 2016. 

The Lights of Christmas, a community event

JoylandConcertHall atTheLightsWhen The Lights of Christmas began in 1997, it set out to lavishly celebrate the message of Christmas in a way that welcomed the community. And what better way to welcome the community than by reaching out to the community for participation in this event! The response has been wonderful!

Local theater artists and Northwest playwrights produce the Holiday Theatre plays. Local music groups perform on several Nightly Festival entertainment stages. Hundreds of community volunteers give their time, and dozens of civic organizations and churches bring groups to help staff the event each night. “I enjoy volunteering at The Lights of Christmas. It puts me in the Christmas spirit.” shares one volunteer from last year. Local businesses donate goods and services or give counter space where brochures are displayed. Northwest artists produce artwork for display or crafts and merchandise for sale in the gift shops. Even local food vendors get in on the celebration, providing food that fills the tummy and warms the heart.

The Lights of Christmas has become a heart-warming holiday experience through the generosity and participation of the entire community. Our prayer is that the 2015 season will be one of joy, togetherness, and rest from the weariness of an overly-busy season. May we, as a community, join together and bless our community and make it a truly “Merry” Christmas.

American Bus Association names The Lights of Christmas one of North America’s 100 best events for 2016

2016Top100Event web150The American Bus Association (ABA) announced that The Lights of Christmas, held each December, has been designated as one of the Top 100 Events in North America for 2016 by an experienced expert tourism industry selection committee. Inclusion in the Top 100 list, published as a supplement to the September/October issue of Destinations magazine, indicated The Lights of Christmas offers excellent entertainment value to both tour groups and individual travellers from around the world, according to ABA.

With the release of the American Bus Association's 2016 Top 100 Events in North America, ABA celebrates 34 years of the program. What began as a way for motorcoach operators to incorporate new product into their itineraries has grown to one of the most sought-after lists by travel professionals, motorcoach operators and the general public.

ABA's 2016 Top 100 Events Selection Committee selected The Lights of Christmas from hundreds of event nominations submitted by ABA members. Judges considered the event's broad appeal, its accessibility to motorcoaches and skill at handling large groups, and a variety of other relevant criteria.

The Top 100 Events list is available online at www.buses.org/Top100.

Fabulous Food at The Lights of Christmas Holiday Festival

858-Joyland-Cafe-at-The-LightsSteamed cheeseburgers? Yes, they do exist and the buns are not soggy! Originating in Connecticut during the 1920s, this New England classic makes its debut among the Grub Hub food vendors at The Lights of Christmas in Stanwood, WA. You will find lots of other fabulous food vendors as well. Papa’s Wood Fire Pizza, which became a favorite last year, returns with their Italian specialty. Crunchy sweet Kettle Korn, hot seafood chowder, and Philly steak sandwiches—is your mouth watering yet? You’ll have to save room for a sweet treat such as elephant ears, funnel cake, or deep fried Oreos. S & T Espresso has a wide array of hot drinks to accompany whatever you choose to eat.

You can also enjoy indoor dining and live country entertainment when you eat at Tinhorn Town. Menu options include pulled pork sandwiches, BBQ chicken wings, mashed potatoes, garden wraps, salad, and cobbler for dessert. Your food options continue at Joyland Café which features teriyaki chicken skewers with rice, clam chowder, bread bowls, cheesy broccoli or curry coconut soup, and chicken wingdings, and more. If you prefer just a bite with coffee or cocoa, stop in at the Starry Night Coffeehouse and enjoy the ambience of live music.

Don’t think we forgot the famous mini-donuts! These tasty donuts are made at the Donut Hut right before your eyes and come out hot and ready to devour. You might have to get an extra bag to take home!

Check out the Food & Snack webpage for more details.

Subcategories

Nightly activities

Nightly activities

Live music, story-telling, crafts, food, pony rides, a petting farm, and Polar Express Train rides. Learn More
Performance schedule

Performance schedule

A variety of choir, band, dance and drama performances, carolers, storytelling, acoustic sets. Learn More
Food & snacks

Food & snacks

Mini-Donuts, Joyland Café, Tinhorn Town, Coffee House, CaribBean Cuisine and other food vendors. Learn More
Driving directions & event map

Driving directions & event map

Only 1 hour North of Seattle! Learn More
Wheelchair accessibility

Wheelchair accessibility

The majority of the event area is either concrete, asphalt or a 'chip sealed' gravel which has a surface nearly Learn More
Volunteering

Volunteering

Share the hope and joy of the Christmas season as a volunteer. Each year, over 800 volunteers make The Lights Learn More
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