1. What is the difference between a Festival Night and an Encore Night?
Festival Nights include the entire Trail of Lights experience, with lighted trails, live music and entertainment, hot cocoa and light refreshments, living history at the Kreische House, family crafts in the Visitors Center, and pictures with Santa. All activities and refreshments are included with admission. There are five festival nights:
Friday, December 8 • Saturday, December 9 • Friday, December 15 • Saturday, December 16 • Sunday, December 17
Encore Nights include the lighted ½ mile trail, but will not have other activities and refreshments, though it is still a good time! There are five encore nights:
Tuesday, December 19 • Wednesday, December 20 • Thursday, December 21 • Friday, December 22 • Saturday, December 23
2. How much are the tickets and where do I purchase them?
Tickets for our Festival Nights are $8 for adults, $4 for students 5-18 and Free for 4 and under. Tickets for the lights-only Encore nights are $5 for adults, $2 for students 5-18 and free for 4 and under. Special discounts are available for Friends members. All tickets are sold at the door. No advanced purchases this year. For more details, visit our ticket information page.
3. How long does it take to walk the trail?
The Trail of Lights route follows our Historic Trail through the sites, which is approximately ½ mile.
Guests typically take 45 minutes to 1 hour to walk through the trail on Festival Nights, which will include a hot chocolate, cookies, and popcorn stop with live music, exploration of the Kreische House, visits with Santa, and crafts in the Visitors Center.
Guests typically take an average of 30 minutes to walk through the lights-only trail during encore nights.
4. Where do I park?
On Festival Nights we will utilize our additional field parking at the sites as well as spots along the road. Handicapped and special parking will be available in our regular parking lot. Staff and volunteers will be happy to guide you to the most convenient spots available, but keep in mind it may be off road.
5. Can I bring my dog?
Yes! Well-behaved dogs on a leash are welcome throughout all of our festivities! Take a picture with them in our lighted “dog park!”
6. What do you have for kids to do?
Trail of Lights is a family-friendly event with plenty of things for kids of all ages! Kids can take pictures with Santa, enjoy hot cocoa and cookies, make crafts in the Visitors Center, and see the Kreische home where they can hang ornaments on our Christmas tree.
7. Is the trail accessible?
Portions of the half-mile loop are paved while the rest are comprised of compacted crushed gravel. During previous Trail of Lights, visitors with wheelchairs, strollers, and wagons have been able to use the trail. Chat with us at the Visitors Center if you need to borrow a wheelchair during your visit.
8. What are the weather contingencies?
Sites staff actively monitor weather conditions to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. In the event of rain or freezing temperatures with high winds, staff will make the difficult decision to cancel the night’s event and will immediately update the website, social media accounts, and alert local media outlets. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the most up-to-date information or call the Visitors Center at (979) 968-5658.
9. I am a Friends member. What are my benefits?
Friends members are eligible for discounts during Festival Nights, however, Friends tickets must be purchased online. Tickets can be purchased here. There are no discounts available for Friends members during Encore Nights.
10. I really love this event! How can I support current and future Trail of Lights?
Become a Shining Star Donor or member of the Friends Group!
11. Can I volunteer at this event?
Absolutely! If you’re interested in seeing a behind-the-scenes look at the events, consider volunteering with us. Email email@example.com for more information.
11. Are there food and drinks available?
Light refreshments will be available throughout the trail, including popcorn, cookies, and hot cocoa. At the Kreische House, guests are encouraged to sample German Lebkuchen and Kinderpunsch, traditional, German holiday treats.
12. Are there opportunities for holiday shopping?
Our Museum Store at the Visitors Center will be open for shopping and includes authentic German holiday merchandise, games and toys, books, t-shirts, and other branded items.
13. Where can I get the most up-to-date information?
Follow us on Facebook or Instagram for updates on current Trail of Light operations or call the Visitors Center during business hours (9:00-4:30) at (979) 968-5658.
Any other questions? Don’t hesitate to reach out at (979) 968-5658 during our Business Hours and throughout the Trail of Lights Festivities.