Y’all we had the best day on Saturday. We went to the Holiday Festival of Lights at James Island County Park which is now an annual tradition for us. Last year was our first year going and honestly, I didn’t do much research, someone just suggested it so we went! I was BLOWN away and we decided this was going to be an annual tradition and it’s one I looked forward to all year.
Last year, we waited in line to see Santa and bought pictures which was totally fine! Here is our picture from last year.
We decided this year to do the Mingle with Kringle which is when you reserve a time to meet Santa ahead of time. You get a one on one session with Santa, the photographer takes many photos (we got 52!) and emails them all to you, and you get a pass to come back to the Festival of Lights another time that season! Being a blogger and a mom who loves capturing the special moments, I felt this was worth it (it’s barely much of a difference price wise when you add everything up) and my kiddos LOVED all that extra time with Santa. Their giggles could be heard across the park. It was one of those memories that I hope to never forget!
We walked around Winter Wonderland and then Santa’s Village, Camden spotted these guys breakdancing. They were awesome by the way! He said, “Can I dance, Mommy?” How could I say no to that sweet face? I’m so thankful for these dancers, they were so sweet to Camden and even turned on Baby Shark! He loved it.
Here is a cute video of this adorableness:
Then it was time to get some dinner! They have several food trucks lined up to choose from. Judd got the Abominable Burger which was HUGE and so tasty! The rest of us got hot dogs and fries, everything was yummy and just what we needed to fill our bellies for more fun!
They also have several fire pits where you can buy s’more packages and cook s’mores! We were so full from dinner that we decided to do this when we come back later this season (we plan to bring my parents or Judd’s dad when they visit for Christmas!)
We then got tickets for the train which was adorable and the kids were in heaven! They drive you through lighted areas that you wouldn’t normally see in your car. The sweet train conductor, let my kids pull the horn too, they loved that. As soon as we got on board, Camden yelled, “ALL ABOARD! CHOOCHOO!”.
Then it was time for us to drive through the lights!! You turn your radio on to a certain station and just drive and admire the beautiful lights! It’s so festive, so joyful, and just makes you even more excited for the holidays!! I was so caught up in the moment that this is the only picture I took during the drive, oops!
A few other things that they have here: adorable holiday stores from a toy store to a gift shop to a sweet shop, a climbing wall for kiddos, walking paths to walk under the lights, an art display with art work from schools across the area, a carousel, and I know I’m forgetting things!
Basically, if you live in Charleston or you live in SC for that matter, you need to come to the Holiday Festival of Lights! It is AMAZING, AMAZING, AMAZING!! Don’t just believe me, these are some of the awards they’ve received: Top 20 Event in the Southeast, Southeast Tourism Society, November 2013 and November 2018, Third Best Holiday Festival in the US, USA Today’s 10 Best Readers’ Choice Award 2015, Third Best Public Lights Display in the US, USA Today’s 10 Best Readers’ Choice Award 2014, One of the Top 10 Holiday Celebrations, Coastal Living Magazine 2012, One of the Top 100 Events in North America, American Bus Association 2012. So cool, right? I love calling Charleston home!
A huge thanks to Charleston County Parks for hosting us!! I will be sharing more about all the amazing parks they have, events, and their Gold Pass (which we have and use almost weekly) in the future!!