IL Light Shows 2023 FB

Although the days are short and nights are cold, light up the night and warm up your spirits by attending a local light show. Lightshows during the winter months are a long-standing tradition in townships and major cities across the state. Lightshows can be enjoyed throughout the holiday season and even past the new year.

Here are a few notable displays to check out:

Northern Illinois

Lincoln Park Zoo Lights

Zoo Lights at Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago are back for the 29th year. Tickets are $7 to $10 per person and admission is free on Mondays. Enjoy the lights from now until Jan. 7.

Freeport Festival of Trees

From now until Dec. 27, enjoy holiday trees decorated by local organizations and vote for your favorite.

Rockford Festival of Lights

Visit this free drive-thru event at Sinnissippi Park from now until New Year’s Eve. This will be Rockford’s grandest light show since the tradition started back in 1989.

Western Illinois

Winter Lights at Quad City Botanical Gardens

Visit the Winter Lights at the Quad City Botanical Center in Rock Island to witness over 225,000 glowing lights illuminating the gardens. This experience will be open until New Year’s Day and tickets are available for purchase on their website.

Quincy Festival of Lights

Visit the Quincy Festival of Lights from now until New Year’s Eve. Catch Santa and Mrs. Clause on Dec. 22 for a special treat.

Central Illinois

Urbana Candle Stick Lane and Trees and Lights from Around the World

Candle Stick Lane is a 60-year-long tradition started by community members in an east Urbana neighborhood. Various houses in the neighborhood are decked out with holiday lights. Visit the neighborhood from now until New Year’s Eve.

Downtown Urban is hosting a Trees and Lights from Around the World event which entails various business decorating trees and windows demonstrating cultural traditions during the holidays from around the world. These displays will be available until Dec. 23.

Effingham Wonderland in Lights

Visit the drive-thru light display in Effingham from now until the new year. The display is open seven days a week and features various photo opportunities and up-close views of the lights.

Shelbyville Festival of Lights

 Visit the captivating light display in Forest Park from now until Dec. 31.

Southern Illinois

Alton Christmas Wonderland

Visit Rock Spring Park in Alton to witness over four million lights illuminating magical scenes. The final day to visit is Dec. 27.


For more information, visit the respective event websites.


Have a wonderful holiday season!