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Drive through Winter Lights

A young guest enjoys last year’s light show. Cami Calnan photo A young guest enjoys last year’s light show. Cami Calnan photo

The annual Winter Lights event at the N.C. Arboretum in Asheville will be offered as a drive-thru experience this year due to COVID-19. 

Guests will navigate through a 1-mile stretch of the Arboretum’s campus to see exhibits covered in thousands of lights. As part of the show’s redesign, visitors will enjoy several new nature-themed displays, including winter wildlife, colorful butterflies, a special insect lantern exhibit and a giant daisy “garden.” Upon arrival, guests will select a special radio station that features the sounds of their favorite holiday tunes to accompany the show from inside their vehicle.

To better accommodate guests, the Arboretum has extended show dates and times, with the event running daily 5:30 to 10:30 p.m. from Nov. 20 to Jan. 10, 2021. Incoming gates close at 10 p.m.

When purchased in advance, tickets are $25 per vehicle and $30 at the gate. Rates are higher for commercial vans and coaches. Arboretum Society members receive a $3 discount, and discounted pricing is available on Tuesdays. Tickets go on sale Tuesday, Sept. 1 at

Proceeds directly support the Arboretum’s mission-driven programming.