Festival of Lights at Moody Gardens

Santa Claus has opened the holiday season at Moody Gardens, flipping the giant electrical switch to turn on more than one million lights at the 11th annual Festival of Lights.

More than 8,000 guests visited Moody Gardens to watch Santa drop in and kick off the holiday light display on the Gulf Coast.

The festivities began at 4 p.m. with live entertainment from Galveston Ballet, the Salvation Army Harbor Light Choir, Vibe Dance Company, Amy’s Dance Academy, and the St. Ignatius Choir with the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.

Santa was to parachute down to Moody Gardens halfway through the event, but windy conditions forced him to arrive via golf cart from the airport instead. Still as jolly as ever despite his change in travel plans, he flipped the switch just after 6 p.m. to officially kick off the holiday season on Galveston Island.

“Festival of Lights has become a holiday tradition for families throughout the region,” Moody Gardens president and CEO John Zendt said. “It was a special treat to see the kids’ faces light up when Santa came driving up in the golf cart from the airport.”

The Festival of Lights will welcome visitors from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Nov. 16 to Dec. 8, Thursday to Saturday. On Dec. 13, the Festival will be open nightly until Jan. 5.

For more information, you can visit moodygardens.org.

Moody Gardens is a public, non-profit, educational destination utilizing nature in the advancement of rehabilitation, conservation, recreation, and research.

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