Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden illuminating the holiday season

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — It’s time for some holiday cheer.

The Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden is getting ready to illuminate the community, just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Garden officials say they have been working around the clock all year long to ready the grounds for the big reveal.

Dominion Energy GardenFest of Lights at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden has been illuminating the community for 26 years. GardenFest started in 1995 and Dominion Energy became a sponsor in 1998. This year, more than a million lights decorate the 50-acre property.

Returning this year is a fan favorite, the model train exhibit at the Kelly education center, as well as Christmas trees decorated by Henrico County Public School students. The trees can be found in the Lora Robins Library. Botanical decorations are also in the Library Reading Room and nearby hallways.

New this year to the festivities is the Overarching Gratitude Community Activity, in which the garden invites guests to write what they are grateful for on a “tree cookie” (a round slice of a tree branch). Also new this year is a 20-foot-tall, cut, live tree in the Conservator.

GardenFest of Lights is in the top running for USA today’s “Best Botanical Garden Holiday Lights” contest. Last year they ranked No. 2, during which more than 136,570 visitors came to see the lights.

Beth Ann Booth, the exhibitions manager at Lewis Ginter says this year’s theme is seeds of light.

“The theme this year is seeds of light and we have brought seeds and fruit into our visual displays. So, you’ll see that in our dry botanical décor in our inter space and you’ll also see in our forms that we have in the garden.”

GardenFest of Lights opens to the public on November 21st and runs through Jan. 8. Tickets are available online only at lewisginter.org.

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