Leavenworth Christmas Lighting Festival
Leavenworth's Christmas Lighting Festival is one of its most popular events of the year and deservedly so. With its Bavarian styled facades and trees lined with beautiful Christmas lights, often accented with a layer of snow, Leavenworth is one of the prettiest Christmas towns in the United States.
An Annual December Tradition
The Festival takes place during the first three weekends of December every year. In 2010, Leavenworth celebrates the 44th annivary of its Christmas Lighting Festival. New for 2010 is that the Christmas Lighting Festival starts on Fridays.
Before the festival starts on Friday, the town lies in darkness awaiting the arrival of the lighting. At dusk on Friday everyone gathers to sing Silent Night and witness the lighting. The town is transformed into a holiday wonderland. Holiday music from the gazebo encircles the village while children sled in the park. Holiday personalities stroll in the streets. You might even meet and get to take a picture with Santa! The aroma of food, hot beverages and good cheer warm the air.
Visitor should arrive at least several hours before the lighting to allow time to find parking and participate in the festivities. Parking can be tough to come by and Highway 2, and city streets are often jammed with visitors, including tour buses.
Amtrak recently started train service to Leavenworth on its route between Seattle and Chicago, which may be a good option to see the Festival, especially in light of the occasionally hazardous winter driving conditions in the mountains. Due to the popularity of the event, accommodations in the city should be booked well in advance. Be sure to visit the Leavenworth Christmas Lighting Festival and bring home the magic of the season!