Lights in Bloom to begin at Selby Gardens on Dec. 20

To mark 15th anniversary, event expanded to 15 nights

Photo courtesy of Selby Gardens

Lights in Bloom, the popular holiday light display at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, will be back, starting Dec. 20, and will run for 15 select nights “to mark the event’s 15th anniversary,” Selby Gardens has announced.

Lights in Bloom will showcase more than 1 million lights set in holiday scenes throughout the 15-acre garden, a news release explains.

Lights in Bloom has been recognized as a holiday tradition for residents of, and visitors to, Sarasota, the release adds. To honor this year’s milestone, Selby Gardens has expanded the event from its usual eight-night schedule to 15 evenings, the release notes. Each night from Dec. 20 to 23, Dec. 26 to 30 and Jan. 1 to 6, 2019, the Gardens will be decorated in lighted displays that will “showcase iconic scenes at Selby Gardens,” the release says. “Beautifully lit rainforest butterflies, dragonflies, flowers and more will fill the gardens with a magical holiday glow,” the release notes.

In addition, the Gardens will feature Lights in Bloom favorites from prior years such as the Wishing Tree and Santa’s North Pole workshop, the release points out.

Planning and design for the annual event began in the springtime, the release says. “[I]t takes several weeks to install the lights,” the release adds.

Further, the nightly events will include live entertainment by SoulRCoaster and The Hydramatic, family activities and games. Santa Claus will visit nightly through Dec. 23, “before returning to the North Pole,” the release points out.

Grilled foods from Michael’s On East, along with beer and wine, and holiday treats such as hot cocoa, will be available for purchase, the release says.

Admission for Lights in Bloom is $20 for Selby Gardens members; $25, for general admission. Children ages 5 to 12 will be admitted for $7 each, while children age 5 and younger will be welcome for free.

Additionally, the release notes, a “Selby Experience” pass may be purchased for one night only, Dec. 22. The “Selby Experience” pass costs $125 for adults and $30 for children ages 4 to 17. It includes reserved parking, early admission, an open bar, a buffet and holiday desserts, the release explains.

Tickets for Lights in Bloom and for the “Selby Experience” may be purchased at