This post was written in 2013 so some information included may be out-of-date. Please be sure to check their website for the latest event information. For the 2015 season, the lights will run daily from November 20, 2015 – January 6, 2016.
Many of you know that Friday was Black Friday and yesterday was Cyber Monday, right? I’m sure, like me, you were scouring the deals and working to get a head start on your holiday shopping. But did you know that today has its own special meaning? Well, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving is dedicated to #GivingTuesday, a national movement to celebrate a day of giving. I wanted to get in the spirit of #GivingTuesday by sharing with you a holiday outing that provides an opportunity to support two great causes, Goodwill and Easter Seals.
Fantasy of Lights is a wonderful holiday light display located at Lighthouse Point Park in New Haven. For a fee of $10 per car, your family can enjoy a fun holiday event and contribute to Easter Seals and Goodwill’s mission:
Enhancing employment, educational, social and recreational opportunities for people with disabilities and other challenges.
We decided to make our trip to Fantasy of Lights last Friday and made it a full afternoon outing by adding in a stop to Ikea (located just a few miles down the road).
I always have a shopping list for Ikea, so it was nice to add on a stop there as part of our holiday outing.
Our visit included some Christmas shopping, a little playtime for the kids in the children’s section, and dinner in the café. While eating and watching the kids running around in the play area, I struck up a conversation with another mom. She also had three children including a set of twins and they were very young just like my crew. We laughed about the fact that Ikea is a great place to grab a bite to eat when you have a bunch of restless toddlers in tow. Oh boy have my Friday night destinations changed!
After the kids were sufficiently worn out from our shopping and eating adventure, we got them in their pajamas and loaded them in the car. By the look on their little faces you could tell they were a bit excited about our adventure.
As I mentioned before, the cost is $10 (cash) per car. They are also offering a new feature this year where you can purchase a pair of 3D glasses for $2 and enjoy an enhanced viewing experience.
They let us know we could tune our radio to 89.1 FM and enjoy pre-selected holiday music during our trip. They also let us know that there would be a little surprise guest and a treat for the kiddos at the end of the trip. Well now they were super excited!
Um, this smile makes me temporarily forget about all his wild daily antics!
We began our slow journey through the maze of light displays. Some were large, some were small, and many moved which thrilled the kids. My favorite thing about holiday light displays is that you get to stay warm and cozy in your car while you casually drive around and enjoy the wonderful holiday scenes.
I will give you a little sampling of what we saw, but I don’t want to spoil the whole show (plus my nighttime picture-taking skills need a bit of work 🙂
There was a sweet elf placing a star atop a Christmas Tree.
A little elf exercise session . . .
Of course this is only a little snippit, there was much, much more to see.
As we rounded the final curve we could see a small line of cars waiting ahead of us. Once we made our way to the front, we were greeted by a surprise visit from Santa.
He would stop and greet each of the cars as they passed by. What a treat for the little ones!
There was a little sleigh where the kids could sit and wait for Santa. He would move back and forth between the cars and the sleigh. My kids were happy to wait for him, but as soon as he came over Sweetheart and Sparkles freaked out. Bruiser stayed strong and made sure he didn’t leave without telling Santa what he wanted for Christmas . . . Dinosaur Trains.
All in all it was a wonderful outing and a beautiful display of lights. The event runs until December 31st, so there is still plenty of time to plan your trip.
What is your favorite way to celebrate Giving Tuesday?
Lighthouse Point Park
2 Lighthouse Road, New Haven, CT
Dates: November 22, 2013 – December 31, 2013
- Sunday – Thursday: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
- Friday – Saturday: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Admission: $10 per car (cash)
Tips and Things to Bring:
- Bring cash if you want to purchase the 3D glasses ($2 each)
- Bring coats for the kids if you plan to get out of the car for a little extra time to visit with Santa
- Bring your camera if you want to capture a picture of Santa with the kids
Meet Our Sponsors!
- The Independent Day School – Located on a rural campus in Middlefield, CT is a private pre-school, elementary and middle school, serving families from over 20 communities.
- Kathryn Deane Photography – Kathryn is a natural light photographer specializing in maternity, newborn, child, family, and senior portrait photography.
Are you interested in becoming an Out and About Mom sponsor? Click here for more info.
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