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Brighten Up Your Holidays With Garden d'Lights

November 12, 2021 - by Sandy Vo

Brighten Up Your Holidays With Garden d'Lights

The most wonderful time of the year returns with over half a million sparkling lights, brought to you by The Bellevue Botanical Garden Society & the City of Bellevue Parks & Community Services. The 26th annual Garden d'Lights will run from Nov. 27 - Dec. 31, open daily and holidays. It returns with a bang after being canceled last year due to COVID-19. The special event features over half a million lights formed in whimsical shapes of plants, birds, animals and cascading waterfalls set amid the natural beauty of the Bellevue Botanical Garden.

This year, tickets will be sold online only with a restriction on how many guests can enter at a time. While new safety measurements alter certain aspects of Garden d’Lights, Co-Chair Cleo Raulerson emphasized that she looks forward to bringing back the beloved event.

“People are so excited that we're going to be back, and we can see that they’re looking forward to it,” Raulerson said. “Garden d’Lights is growing and has become a beloved community event where everyone is welcome.”

Garden d’Lights is no simple task to execute. The building of lights normally begins in March, piecing together displays one by one. Volunteers are a huge part of producing the event, raking in over 9,000 hours of hard work and dedication.

Photos taken pre-pandemic

“Every year, the volunteers have added more and more to Garden d’Lights, bringing new ideas to the table and improving the lights to create a more enjoyable experience for the community,” Raulerson said.

Garden d’Lights began in 1994. The first displays were created by Garden Manager Nancy Kartes, who would work on the light displays at home after work. It then evolved to feature more intricate and realistic flowers and animals handcrafted by volunteers, along with using environment-friendly LED lights.

“The event will continue to evolve, and we’ll have some long-time volunteers along with some new team members who will continue to bring new ways of doing things,” Raulerson said. “It’s a great garden and we have great people to work with. We’re so excited to be back and showcase many of our old favorites, and some new surprises too!”

Tickets are available now to see the anticipated light show. No vaccination verification is required.

Craving more festive experiences in Downtown Bellevue? Check out Bellevue's Season of Cheer, a collection of the region’s most popular holiday celebrations and events!

Header image courtesy of: Michelle Burton

This blog is part of the Heart of Bellevue: our campaign to showcase local businesses while connecting you with stories of activity, creativity and recovery. Find out about our campaign and explore more of what’s happening around Downtown.


Bellevue Botanical Garden
12001 Main St
Bellevue, WA 98005

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