Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the Southern Lights holiday festival, presented by Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc., returns to the Kentucky Horse Park November 22 to December 31. In addition to reaching the milestone of two decades as a tradition for Kentucky families, Southern Lights, produced by the Kentucky Horse Park Foundation, has also achieved status as a premier holiday event in the region and nation. More than 115,000 individuals in more than 27,000 vehichles attend Southern Lights annually.
From 5:30 until 10:00 pm each evening, visitors will be awed by the majestic light displays against the winter landscape. The drive begins at the Kentucky Horse Park Campground, and will proceed through an enhanced dreamland of dazzling lighted and often animated figures. While many displays represent the holiday season, favorites are customized to represent the Bluegrass state.
This year’s displays include the Christmas Village, The Twelve Days of Christmas, Keeneland Race Track, Show Jumping, Steeplechase and the Spires of Churchill Downs — displays comprising thousands of twinkling lights. New this year will be several Wizard of Oz light displays featuring favorite characters Dorothy, Toto, Tin Man, Scarecrow, Lion, and the Wicked Witch.
After enjoying the drive, visitors will be able to leave their cars behind and visit inside the other attractions inside the park to see a multitude of holiday happenings and seasonal entertainment. Enjoy shopping the Kentucky Horse Park Gift Shop and holiday craft vendors. Bring the little ones to meet and have their picture taken with Santa Claus and Frosty. There will also be an exotic petting zoo, pony rides, camel rides and, new this year, an encounter with live reindeer. Catch a ride on the Mini Train Express as it goes chug-chug-chugging around the Man o’ War statue. Then be sure to stop by and see the model trains and antique dollhouses, visit the International Museum of the Horse, a Smithsonian Affiliate, and enjoy a festive dinner in the Bit & Bridle Restaurant.
The American Bus Association (ABA) selected Southern Lights as a Top 100 event for 2013 and 2014, which is an annual compendium of the best events for group travel in the United States and Canada. Winners are chosen from hundreds of celebrations, festivals, fairs, commemorative events, and more that have been nominated by ABA members. The Southeast Tourism Society has again selected Southern Lights a Top 20 Event among states across the Southeast, and the Kentucky Travel Industry Association annually selects Southern Lights as a Top 10 Winter/Holiday Event in Kentucky.
The Southern Lights Stroll, on Thursday, November 21, is the only night the lights can be viewed on foot. Featuring a competitive 5K race in addition to the leisurely stroll available to families, the Southern Lights Stroll is $15 for pre-registered adults ($20 walk-up) and includes a long-sleeved T-shirt for the first 500 registered adults; $10 for pre-registered kids 7-12 ($15 walk-up) includes a souvenir holiday item for the first 200 registered children. Sponsored in part by John’s Run/Walk Shop, the event features race awards, prize drawings, refreshments, entertainment, the Mini Train Express and more. For more information about the Southern Lights Stroll, visit here – http://www.kyhorsepark.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=4931.
All proceeds support the Kentucky Horse Park Foundation. The 2013 Shining Star Presenting Sponsor is Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc.; the Holly & Ivy Sponsors are Kerr Brothers and Cafe Press, Inc.; and, the Ribbons & Bows Sponsor is Kentucky Utilities.
For more information on Southern Lights, group admissions, and the Southern Lights Stroll registration, contact the KHP Foundation at (859) 255-5727 or at
ADDITIONAL ATTRACTIONS -
Kentucky Horse Park Gift ShopHoliday Craft FairPony Rides and Camel Rides ($)Exotic Petting ZooReindeer EncounterSanta Claus with visits from Frosty and pictures with Santa, with Lexington Rotary Club ($)Mini Train ExpressLive Entertainment and Activities for ChildrenBluegrass Railroad Club Model TrainsThe Bluegrass Miniature Society Dollhouses International Museum of the Horse, a Smithsonian AffiliateBit & Bridle Restaurant, home of Santa’s Workshop
SPECIAL NIGHTS/WEEKENDS (included with admission) -
November 29-30: Christmas Carriage Parade Covered ArenaDecember 6-7: Breyer WeekendDecember 13-14: Frosty's Family FunhouseDecember 17 (Tuesday): Military Night (must show valid military ID for one personal vehicle admission)
Dates & Times: November 21, 2013 – Southern Lights Stroll- 5:00 pm registration, 6:45 pm stroll beginsNovember 22 - December 31, 2013 - 5:30 pm to 10:00 pm each eveningDriving tour only on Thanksgiving night, November 28, and December 24-31 (indoor closed)
Admission:Personal Vehicle Sunday – Thursday $15.00Friday and Saturday $20.00Other VehicleExtended Van $30.00Limousine $30.00Mini-Bus $50.00School Bus $75.00Motor coach $125.00
Location & Parking:Enter at KHP Campground entrance to drive through lights,Park in Main Visitor Parking to go to additional attractions inside the park
Directions to the Kentucky Horse Park: http://kyhorsepark.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=610&Itemid=336Please note that some electronic map services available on Apple and Android mobile and auto GPS devices are not providing accurate directions to the Kentucky Horse Park. We recommend that visitors use home computers to access a mapping service for directions, use the directions provided on the KHP website, follow the brown highway signs or call ahead to double-check their route. Additionally, we recommend that out-of-town visitors use Interstate 75, Exit 115 (Newtown Pike) instead of Exit 120 (Georgetown Road) to access the Southern Lights entrance at the KHP Campground to help avoid congestion and a left-hand turn across traffic into the park.
The Southern Lights, presented by Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, Inc., has returned to the Kentucky Horse Park! The Kentucky Horse Park Foundation presents Southern Lights annually as a fundraiser in support of the Kentucky Horse Park for the enjoyment of the public.
From 5:30 until 10:00 pm each evening, visitors will be awed by the dazzling display of majestic lights. The drive will begin at the Kentucky Horse Park Campground, and will proceed through an enhanced dreamland of dazzling lighted and often animated figures. While many displays represent the holiday season, favorites are customized to represent the Bluegrass state.
Inside the park, visitors will be able to leave their cars behind to see a multitude of holiday happenings including seasonal entertainment, the Kentucky Horse Park Gift Shop and holiday craft vendors, Santa Claus and Frosty, an exotic petting zoo, pony rides, camel rides, the Mini-Train Express and model trains, dollhouses, the International Museum of the Horse, and the Bit & Bridle Restaurant serving dinner and seasonal goodies.
The lights are on each night through December 31, and the additional attractions inside the park will be open each night, with the exception of November 22 (Thanksgiving) and December 24 to 31.
Special weekends or events will add to the holiday excitement throughout Southern Lights and include Breyer Weekend, November 30 – December 1, Frosty’s Family Fun Weekend, December 7 – 8, Kentucky Proud Weekend, December 14 – 15, and Military Night, December 18.
For more info -
www.SouthernLightsKy.org or www.KHPFoundation.org or call 859/255-5727
Personal Vehicle - Sunday – Thursday - $15.00
Friday and Saturday - $20.00
Extended Van - $30.00
Limousine - $30.00
Mini-Bus - $50.00
School Bus - $75.00
Motorcoach - $125.00
NOTE: Complimentary Passes will be accepted Sunday – Thursday ONLY
Additional Attractions -
Kentucky Horse Park Gift Shop
Holiday Craft Fair
Pony Rides and Camel Rides ($)
Exotic Petting Zoo
Santa Claus with visits from Frosty, pictures with Santa by Rotary Club ($)
Live Entertainment and Children’s Activities
Bluegrass Railroad Club Model Trains
The Bluegrass Miniature Society Dollhouses
International Museum of the Horse, a Smithsonian Affiliate
Bit & Bridle Restaurant, home of Santa’s Workshop
Location and Parking-
Enter at KHP Campground entrance, drive through lights,
Park in Main Visitor Parking to go to additional attractions inside park
Directions to the Kentucky Horse Park*: http://kyhorsepark.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=610&Itemid=336
*Travel Tip: Avoid Interstate-75, exit 120, and Georgetown Road as traffic can get really backed up the last weeks before Christmas. Instead, approach the Southern Lights gate (KHP Campground entrance) on Iron Works Pike from the east, from I-75, exit 115, and Newtown Pike.
Dates and Times –
November 16 through December 31, 2012
5:30 to 10:00 pm each evening
Driving tour only on Thanksgiving night, November 22, and December 24-31*
Breyer Weekend, November 30-December 1
Frosty’s Family Fun Weekend, December 7-8
Kentucky Proud Weekend, December 14-15
Military Night, December 18 - Free Admission per personal vehicle with military ID
*(The additional Southern Lights attractions such as the KHP Gift Shop, craft vendors, Santa Claus, Mini-Train Express and model trains, Bit & Bridle Restaurant, International Museum of the Horse, dollhouses, pony rides, camel rides, and exotic petting zoo are open nightly through December 23, with the exception of Thanksgiving night, November 22.)
Prices and dates are subject to change without notice.