Last night we took Henry to his first Christmas light drive-thru at Prairie Lights. He loved it! Like many 3-year-olds, he didn’t love waiting in line, but an iPhone, Christmas music, and a little discussion about what we want Santa to bring helped pass the time. The wait wasn’t too long but it doesn’t take much time for a toddler to lose his patience. We’ve heard the secret is to get there right after dark while most others are still eating dinner.
I hadn’t been in a years and I can certainly say it’s improved. We went with a Groupon which gave us a couple of dollars off. Keep your eye out, they may run another. Tickets are by the car load. On Monday through Thursday it’s $20 and Friday through Sunday it’s $30. Check your local papers for coupons too. I think with the business they’ve lost during the ice storm, they are trying to get a lot of volume in. We’ve see coupons in our neighborhood paper suddenly.
Once you get passed the gate, it took us a little over an hour to go through the park. It was a cute ride. There were lots of themed areas that spread through different holidays and groupings. Santa’s Coal Mine was pretty great. All the moms in the car were just waiting for those shiny diamonds to appear. Of course they also have their brilliant tunnels you drive through which are sure to awe an excited toddler.
Near the end there is a Christmas holiday village that you can stop at to let the kids run through a beautiful Christmas light path and visit Santa. It’s not free, a couple of dollars for each part. I think if your kids are at that perfect age where they are still full of Christmas magic, the couple of dollars is worth it. As adults, your call. They do have some inexpensive snacks and beverages available along with a lot of restrooms. We enjoyed some nice warm $1 hot coco while Henry was running through the paths.
There are a few things to remember when you go. There are only bathrooms near the end, so go before and if you have small boys consider bringing a jar (second time this has saved us with Henry). Bring your camera. It maybe hard to take photos while out on the drive, but there are some cute places to take photos within the village. Lastly, if you plan on going into the village, a lot of it is outside, so bring jackets. Something you tend to forget if you are thinking you are going to just sit in the car the whole time.
It’s a lot of fun for those that love Christmas lights. I think it’s worth going at least once. If you need their hours they have everything listed on their website.
I’m sure we’ll be back there next year. We had too much fun to miss it.