This is the third year of the event, which had been on a 10 year hiatus.
The whole extravaganza is sponsored by Bank of America.
Janeway says Wild Lights is a contender for USA Today’s 10 Best Reader’s Choice travel awards for Best Zoo Lights.
There are other major holiday light fests in the metro Detroit area, such as the gigantic lit displays along Hines Drive as well as the many-coloured illuminated storefronts in downtown Rochester.
Janeway says this is a bit different.
“One of the many exciting aspects of Wild Lights is the fact that it takes place at a zoo.
“It incorporates animal sculptures and themed activities that advance our mission of Celebrating and Saving Wildlife,” she said.
For example, the arts and crafts station allows children to make a kitty play toy or a doggy bed that will be donated to Michigan humane societies to be given to the dogs and cats in their care.
Besides the lights visitors can check out the Polar Plunge, a 22-foot-tall, 150-foot-long slide down which guests soar on inner tubes.
The Polar Express 4-D Experience shows the 4-D Theater, and the Simulator Ride features Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs – The Ride.
Janeway says guests can enjoy carousel rides, participate in arts and crafts, take a photo with Santa Claus (through Dec. 23), have some hot cocoa inside a life-sized gingerbread house, and explore the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition.
The zoo encourages visitors to purchase tickets in advance, either online, at the admission gate, or at Kroger stores.
The event does sell out and on such nights, walk-up tickets will be available at the gates beginning 7:30 p.m.
“Wild Lights is wildly popular; guests should expect traffic and crowds and plan arrival times accordingly,” Janeway says.
Photos by Mark Gaskill