The Saint Louis Zoo is getting into the Christmas season once again by lighting up their grounds with Christmas lights for the 18th straight year.
The annual U.S. Bank Wild Lights will open November 24-26, for the first of five weeks from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., featuring a wild, arctic wonderland with over half a million twinkling lights.
“Every year the event gets bigger and better with more lights and activities for all ages,” St. Louis Zoo Public Relations Manager Christy Childs said. “Last year we had 52,000 guests ranging from families with children to couples and large groups.”
Wild Lights also offers visitors the chance to see whimsical light displays, including Starry Safari, Jungle Bell Rock, Swan Lake, South Entrance Safari, Winter Wildland, Snowfall Alley, Gingerbread Village, Candy Lane and more.
Visitors can also see a wide array of birds at Penguin & Puffin Coast, check in on Kali the polar bear at McDonnell Polar Bear Point, warm up in the tropics of the Monsanto Insectarium, where you’ll see colorful insects from around the world, and go underwater through the Sea Lion Sound tunnel.
Patrons are also invited to gather around the fire to hear captivating animal stories by theatrical interpreters. Carolers, costumed characters and other live performances on select weekend nights will be on hand to provide entertainment while kids of all ages can take part in the festive crafts and activities at the Woodland Workshop.
Climb aboard your favorite animal on the Mary Ann Lee Conservation Carousel ($3) or chill out in the 4D Theater featuring “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer 4D” ($4-5). Rides are weather permitting.
Patrons are invited to take a detour to enjoy dinner, snacks, hot chocolate and more available at food locations throughout the Zoo.
Those who are in the shopping mood will receive a 10 percent discount (20 percent for Zoo members) at all of the Zoo gift shop locations.
For the first time, the Zoo is offering a Sensory Night on Monday, Dec. 11 for individuals on the autism spectrum and others who may benefit from a sensory-friendly experience. Sensory Night tickets are limited and must be purchased in advance.
“This special night will mirror the traditional Wild Lights experience, but the evening will offer quiet areas and trained Zoo staff to assist families,” Childs said.
Tickets purchased Monday through Thursday are $7 for Zoo members and $8 for the general public Monday through Thursday. Tickets purchased on the Wild Lights weekend will be $9 for members and $10 for general public. Children under 2 years-old will receive free admission. Wild Lights tickets can be purchased in advance at stlzoo.org/wildlights, or at the door on nights of the event starting at 5:30 p.m. Free parking is available on Zoo parking lots during event hours.