I figured anybody could take snazzy nighttime snapshots of the Festival of Lights, which happens every holiday season at Tanglewood Park. The fest is one of the biggest light shows in the Southeast, which means the roads past our neighborhood will be clogged with car-bound seekers of light from now till New Year’s. After the sun goes down, that is.

Bulb close-up

By daylight, the Tanglewood is its regular self: a county park with miles of footpaths and thousands of acres to roam. It just happens to have dozens of structures festooned with lightbulbs in familiar holiday shapes.

While it’d be tempting to wander over there after dark and snap a few time-exposures, the reality is the park will be bumper-to-bumper from one end to the other, and wandering around after sundown risks stumbling over the power cords running lining the route. Not super safe (or sane, for that matter).

I walked about six miles, but the actual light show route is closer to four. I’m not sure of which way the actual driving route goes; I’ll leave that for a later post. (I’m sure I’ll end up ponying up the $15-per-carload fee to see the show from behind the wheel; it’s crazy to drive to a show that’s walking distance from my front door, but it’s no crazier than blogging about a light show without any actual lights).

May as well get on to the pictures.

Horn closeup

Trumpet near the entrance to the show. Fill in your favorite triumphant trumpet solo.

Entrance gate, back side

Imagine how cool this’ll look if we get any snow between now and New Year’s.

House and mill

This is one of the less-ornate structures.

Rocking horse

Hmm, I wonder how long it’s been since the last American child received a rocking horse for Christmas. I’m guessing pre-Nixon.

Clouds above the train

I have to admit the smoke clouds and engineer on this old locomotive would be an improvement.

Light closeup

Why does this look like a child shouting, “Where’s My XBox?”

Bird in flight

One section has birds and reindeer arrayed across arcs over the road.

Flying reindeer

These’ll no doubt be animated when the lights are turned on.

Light tunnel

A light tunnel enables the stoners to imagine themselves making the leap to hyperspace. See, there’s something for every demographic.

Trumpeter near the entrance

Trumpeter near the entrance to the show. See, we still have a bit of fall color about.

I suspect that’s enough of this silliness. The actual light show, even with all the cars and crowds, is a thousand times more interesting. I’ve left off the biggest, most spectacular displays because by daylight they’re about as photogenic as the back side of a billboard.

Links for this outing:

Google map:

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