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EVENT GUIDE: Holiday fun, tree lightings and more in the Treasure Valley

We've rounded up some of the most impressive holiday displays from Christmas lights at the Winter Garden aGlow to the Festival of Trees.

BOISE, Idaho — Are you ready to get into the holiday spirit and feast your eyes on some dazzling light displays? We've rounded up some of the most impressive displays in the Treasure Valley this holiday season - from the always spectacular Winter Garden aGlow to decked out home displays you won't want to miss. 


Bundle up and walk the grounds of Scentsy Commons in Meridian and take in this spectacular Christmas lights display on Nov. 15.

Visitors can view more than 450 trees wrapped in lights - that’s more than 43 miles of Christmas lights.

The display includes a 200-foot tunnel that dazzles with 67,000 lights. The grounds are open to the public, and the Christmas lights are on from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.


The holiday spirit is alive and well in downtown Caldwell. Now in its 12th year, 1 million lights make up the city's Winter Wonderland display along Indian Creek.

If you'd like to check out all the lights, they'll be turned on Nov. 22 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

For some added family fun, strap on some skates and try out the ice ribbon in the booming Indian Creek Plaza. Organizers say the ice ribbon is the first of its kind in Idaho.


BSU faculty and staff will gather with students in the Quad at 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 5 for for cocoa and carols. BSU President Marlene Tromp is scheduled to light the tree around 5:40 p.m.


The Idaho Botanical Garden's annual Winter Garden aGlow has been a holiday staple in the City of Trees for more than two decades.

Each year tens of thousands of visitors take in the spectacular display featuring more than 400,000 lights.

The event is the Idaho Botanical Garden's biggest fundraiser of the year, with money raised going to fund education and horticulture programs.

In addition to the lights, visitors can enjoy caroling, visits from Santa and the Holiday Express, a G-scale model train that winds its way through the glowing winter wonderland. Local choirs will fill the air with music on select nights.

Beginning Nov. 28 the Winter Garden aGlow will be open every night from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. until Jan. 4.

This year the garden will have a 21 and over area in the upper gardens for "Wine Wednesdays" on Dec. 11 and 18.

Military personnel and their family members can enjoy free entry to the Winter Garden aGLow on Dec. 10.

The garden will be closed to the general public on Dec. 4 and 10.

Tuesday, December 17, is KTVB family night with a special admission price of $7.

For admission information, visit the Idaho Botanical Garden website.


Trees will be available for purchase at the Boise Rescue Mission Ministries' Ministry Center Warehouse in Boise and the former Rescue Mission Thrift Store in Nampa starting on Nov. 30. The tree lots will be open on Friday's at 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and on Saturday and Sunday's from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m until Dec. 16, or they sell out. Proceeds will be used to help support the Rescue Mission.


The community is invited to join Mayor Bieter light up the holiday tree on The Grove Plaza in downtown Boise. The ceremony will happen on Dec. 6 at 6 p.m. In addition to holiday caroling, there will be beer and wine available for purchase.


The 7th Annual Winter Lights Parade and Christmas Tree lighting will kick off the festivities on Friday, Dec. 6. The Winter Lights Parade will light up the night. The evening will also feature the lighting of Meridian's Christmas Tree in Generations Plaza on the corner of Main and Idaho. Buddy the Elf will be here to help Santa.


Help The Salvation Army Stuff the Bus with toys for Treasure Valley children on Saturday, Dec. 7. Donated new unwrapped toys and gift cards can be dropped off at Valley Regional Transit buses outside of Fred Meyer stores from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday. The Salvation Army will take the toys and distribute them to children in need around the Treasure Valley during the Christmas season. 


On Claus N Paws day the Zoo Boise is offering free admission from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7. 

Inside the zoo, families can make holiday crafts and see the animals receive their holiday gifts.


The community is coming together to help out those who are in need for 7 Cares Idaho Shares Day. Cash and food donations can be made at all Treasure Valley Fred Meyer locations, select Albertsons stores, and at Boise State University's Albertsons Stadium on Dec. 14 from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.


Children can take pictures with Santa, as well as, the Grinch and his Whoville characters. There will be model train sets on display and face painting available. 

The open house begins at 12 p.m. and will go until 5 p.m. on Dec. 15. For more information you can visit the depot's website.


Franz Witte Nursery is hosting a mini Christmas tree class where participants can decorate their own living miniature Christmas tree. 

The class will be from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 18 and costs $30 a person. Included in the price is one Holly or Dwarf Alberta Spruce and ornaments for decoration.


The Bell Ringer, a holiday rock opera, will perform on Wednesday, Dec. 18. from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Nampa Civic Center. The opera will feature former Trans-Siberian Orchestra members Jody Ashworth and Valerie Vigoda. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Toys for Tots Literacy Program. Visit Boise.org to purchase tickets.


The race starts and finishes at Boise High School in downtown Boise on Dec. 21 at 10 a.m. Participants can enjoy "hot soup from Create Common Good and Boise Co-Op and bagels from Blue Sky at finish line," according to the YMCA. For more course maps and information visit the YMCA website.


Create a graham cracker cottage on Saturday, Dec. 21 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Supplies will be provided by the Ada Community Library Victory branch. For more details visit Boise.org.


DEFY Boise, formally named CircusTrix, will host a Chanukah dinner with latkes, doughnuts and a Menorah lighting on Dec. 22. The party will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Sunday night. Attendees can participate in a ninja obstacle course, extreme dodgeball, trapeze, foam pits, and more. To purchase tickets visit the Chabad Lubavitch of Idaho website.  


On Monday, Dec. 23 there will be a menorah lighting ceremony, live music, and a performance by the Chabad Hebrew School at the state capitol building. The event is free and open to the public. Attendees are asked to come dressed in business formal attire. For more information visit the Chabad Lubavitch of Idaho website.  


Brown Like Me will host a Kwanzaa event on Dec. 29 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. honoring African culture. The week-long annual celebration is observed from Dec. 26 to Jan.1. For more details check out eventbrite.com.


Jump, water ski, or wakeboard in the chilling waters of Lucky Peak alongside hundreds of others to raise money for children in Idaho with critical illnesses. The plunge will happen at 11 a.m. on Jan. 1. Visit Make-A-Wish Idaho's website to register.


If you're looking to find great holiday lights displays in your neighborhood, check out this Google Map showing dozens of home displays around the Treasure Valley.

You can also add your own display to the map by sending an email to BoiseChristmasLights@gmail.com.

It's a fun way to share and discover festive spots in your area.


Want to check out the light displays, but don't feel like driving? Several local companies are offering holiday lights tours.

Click on the links below to visit their websites.

Boise Party Bus - The Winter Nights Christmas Lights Tour visits festive homes in Boise and the Idaho Botanical Garden's Winter Garden aGlow (admission not included). Tours run two to four hours daily.

Boise Township Tours - Tours run Mon.-Sat. nights; Each tour lasts about 75 minutes and features festive music and entertainment.

Boise Trolley Tours - Tours run nightly at 7 p.m. and leave from the Evergreen Business Mall (in the Library Plaza corner of Cole and Ustick roads). Tours last about 55 minutes. Be sure to bundle up; the trolley is open-air. Hot beverages are available for purchase.

Diamond Limousine Holiday Lights Tours - Check out the holiday lights in style! Diamond Limousine will pick your group up and provide music and cookies. Just sit back and enjoy the mapped-out tour of lights.

Showcase Limousine Christmas Lights Tours - Showcase Limousines feature a crackling fireplace, Christmas candy, sing-a-longs, and beverages.

Have you spotted a spectacular holiday display that should be added to this list? Email ngennaoui@ktvb.com and include the address, photos, and if possible, contact information for the person who set up the display.

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