Belmont’s Holidays at the Garden: A Mile of a Million Lights Opening This Month


Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden’s annual Holidays at the Garden returns with a shimmering Mile of a Million Lights! Along the journey, discover the colorful lights of the topiaries dancing to merry tunes, LED cherry trees glowing along Canal Garden, waves of color glittering in the Piedmont Prairie, enchanting fairy villages, a new interactive Stickwork sculpture by NC artist Patrick Dougherty, and so much more. Holidays at the Garden will be open Nov. 29, 2019 through Jan. 5, 2020 from 5 to 9 p.m. each evening, although the Garden will be closed Christmas Day.

About Holidays at the Garden

Visitors will enjoy annual traditions including the 15-foot towering orchid tree, live music (daily 6 to 8 p.m.), holiday shopping in The Garden Store, crackling fires to warm cold hands or roast a marshmallow, a children’s activity, warm beverages and more. Food and snacks will be available for purchase in addition to beverages including coffee, hot chocolate, cider, beer, wine and other spirits.

Model train displays built by the Metrolina Model Railroaders can be found throughout the Garden in addition to an expanded display of quaint buildings from Department 56’s Dickens’ Village Series®. Santa Claus will be available for professional photos with families on Dec. 2, 9 and 16  from 5 to 8:30 p.m. (additional fee, reservations required online). Santa will also be available Tuesday through Thursday from Dec. 3 – 19 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. for personal photos (no fee). Mrs. Claus will visit the Garden Friday through Sunday from Nov. 29 to Dec. 22 in addition to Christmas Eve from 6 to 8 p.m.

New this year, North Carolina artist Patrick Dougherty’s latest interactive Stickwork sculpture will be on display throughout the holiday season. Using minimal tools and a simple technique of bending, interweaving, and fastening together twigs and branches, he creates works of art inseparable with nature and the landscape. With a dazzling variety of forms seamlessly intertwined with their context, his sculptures evoke fantastical images of nests, cocoons, cones, castles, and beehives. Over the last thirty years, Dougherty has built more than 300 works throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia that range from stand-alone structures to a kind of modern primitive architecture–every piece mesmerizing in its ability to fly through trees, overtake buildings, and virtually defy gravity.

Holidays at the Garden will be open Nov. 29, 2019 through Jan. 5, 2020 from 5 to 9 p.m. each evening, although the Garden will be closed Christmas Day. Holidays at the Garden admission is discounted for tickets purchased online in advance and prices increase at the door. Admission purchased online in advance for Monday through Thursday is $14.95 per adult, $12.95 per senior 60+, $7.95 per child 2-12 and free for children under age two. Admission purchased online in advance for Friday through Sunday is $16.95 per adult, $14.95 per senior 60+, $8.95 per child 2-12 and free for children under age two. Garden members receive a 30% discount and also receive 30% off the purchase of up to four guest passes. Guests are encouraged to purchase tickets online in advance at