If you’re someone who can’t get enough of twinkling holiday lights, then this enchanting event will certainly strike a “cord” with you – as in an extension cord! Stroll through strands of brightly colored lights during a magical outdoor evening.

Photo by Heather Parker, Friends of the Garden

By Peg Cameron Gill

Enjoy a dazzling botanical-themed evening light festival at Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden in Springfield, presented in partnership with Friends of the Garden. This is the fifth annual “Gardens Aglow,” stroll, and it’s presented by Friends of the Garden, in partnership with the Springfield-Greene County Park Board. 

Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden is located at the Springfield Botanical Gardens at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park, 2400 S. Scenic Ave.

Stroll beneath 200,000 colorful lights, accenting unique structures and landscaping and capturing nature’s winter beauty. “Gardens Aglow” is the top annual fundraiser for garden development within Springfield Botanical Gardens. You can pre-purchase tickets and find information here

This enchanting evening is appropriate for all ages. Gardens Aglow runs 5–8:30 PM on Dec. 21–23, and Dec. 26–31. Advanced online tickets are $5/Adult and $3/Child ages 3–12. Admission at the gate is $7/Adult; $4/Child. Kids aged 2 years and under are free.

Light features include RGB lights, light tunnels, firecracker lights, framed installations, water feature lights, up lighting and string lights. Cozy up to a fire pit and enjoy hot beverages and treats from local vendors. The accessible pathway includes about a half-mile trail. Wheelchairs may be available upon request, first come, first served.

Photo by Gage Rudick, Friends of the Garden

Light features are made possible by the Friends of the Garden, Springfield-Greene County Park Board, Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten, Heavy Metal Christmas, Iris Society of the Ozarks, Springfield Herb Society, Ozarks Daylily Society, and Ozark Regional Lily Society. New frames this year were designed and made by Kodiak Trailers, Bill Fullerton, and the Park Operations construction crew. Simmons Bank generously sponsors Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden, Gray/Campbell Farmstead and Springfield Sister Cities Association.

Proceeds from Gardens Aglow support dozens of gardens, programs and environmental improvements throughout the Springfield Botanical Gardens. The annual event is the largest fundraiser for the Gardens. Learn about volunteer opportunities and become a member of Friends of Garden here.

For information on how to volunteer at Springfield Botanical Gardens, or to become a project donor, contact Heather Parker, Executive Director of Friends of the Garden, at 417-874-2952 or click here.

Speaking of gardens, read about how the gifts of a simple garden can keep giving all seasons here.

For hundreds more events, visit Missouri Life’s Event Calendar.