Even if the weather outside is frightful, taking a drive to see Christmas lights can be the perfect, cozy activity to do with your family during the dark evenings leading up to Christmas. Get the whole family snug in their pajamas, fill up some travel mugs and sippy cups with hot chocolate, and bundle up in the car for a twinkling adventure.
If you’re feeling extra festive, make a game of it. Try out a Christmas light scavenger hunt, and count up how many points you can get as you search for each item on the list. In our family, each of us chooses a special sound to make every time we spot a house with Christmas lights on. (Literally any sound goes, from a cow’s moo to a fake sneeze!) A car full of people making ridiculous noises is enough to send everyone into fits of giggles!
Don’t forget to play some holiday tunes to set the mood! Some houses will coordinate with a specific local radio stations, but for the ones that don’t, you can try 104.5 or 96.1 on your radio or your favorite holiday CD or Pandora station.
“We love holidays, decorating and especially holiday lights! We are excited to bring everyone who takes a couple minutes to stop by and enjoy the excitement of watching AND listening to our holiday light show. Please stop by when you have time to enjoy one of our passions with us!”
New this year:
- 4 new “mini trees” for a total of 8 mini trees!
- A couple new songs added to the show line up
- A paved road! No more gravel mess!
What to know:
- Park on Napoleon Street in front of the display.
- DO NOT park in the driveway
- Please keep your clearance lights on so traffic traveling on Napoleon St can see that you are stopped.
- Please be alert for and courteous to traffic at all times.
- Tune your radio to FM 90.7 while viewing the show to listen to the music in stereo.
- Sunday December 1st through Thursday December 26th
3. 500 Troon Court “The Gingerbread House”
A family favorite every year! You may recognize it as “The Halloween House” as well, because these folks know how to decorate! Plan to park in the cul-de-sac and take a few minutes to see it all–there are a lot of details to notice!
Only runs on non-windy days.
5. 1655 Red Barn Drive “The New Santa House”
The Santa House has moved to a new location! It was “adopted” by a new family and is now at its new home, but it still has all the same joyful holiday cheer! Plan to get out of your car for this one! Your kids will love to walk along the sidewalk and see the magic up close!
6. 845 Jessie Street “Jessie Street Christmas Lights”
Tune in to the designated radio frequency and listen as you watch! Runs from 5-9 p.m. daily, and offers a 30 minute show.
2019 Show Lineup:
Happy Christmas (War is over)
Wizards in winter – Trans Siberian Orchestra
Do you wanna build a snowman – Frozen Soundtrack
Jingle Bells – BNL
Reflections Intro from EPCOT Fireworks
Reflections of Earth – EPCOT Fireworks music
Youre a mean one Mr Grinch – Burl Ives
All Iwant for XMas is you – Mariah Carey
THX Electrical Failure – No artist
its the most wonderful time – Andy Williams
Git Up – Blanco Brown
See how thousands of white paper sacks, each filled with sand and a votive candle, create a magical scene on a winter evening! Miles of luminaria are available for viewing by foot or car. Aisle of Lights is held annually on the second Sunday in December. Light luminarias on Sunday from 5:00 to 9:00 pm. Other activities take place throughout the day and evening.
Where to See Luminarias
1. Residents and businesses throughout Coralville are invited to light luminarias on their sidewalks.
2. The City and community volunteers will light luminarias on:
- 5th Street (1st Avenue to S.T. Morrison Park)
- 12th Avenue (Highway 6 to Oakdale Boulevard)
- Holiday Road (1st Avenue to 12th Avenue)
8. 12th Avenue
2629 120th St. NW Right off the Swisher exit (Exit 10) between Interstate 380 and Highway 965
At 93 years old, you’d think putting up all those Christmas lights would be nearly impossible. But not for Hazel Schropp!
Take Highway 382 all the way down to the beach. It’s the house right across from the Twin View Heights entrance.
Show Sunday-Thursday 4:30-10 p.m. and Friday-Saturday 4:30-11 p.m.
Tune into 101.7 on your car radio and watch the show synchronized with the music!
11. Eastwood Drive
Largest display in Tiffin!
13. Hillview Drive
From Highway 151, turn onto Highland Drive (by the carwash), then take a right on Hillview Drive.
Come on out and check out this awesome light show set to Christmas music. It’s free, but they collect donations for charity and give 100% of donations to a different non-profit every year.
This year, all donations collected by Blue Creek Christmas will be going to the Center Point – Urbana Educational Foundation. This organization focuses on our children’s academic endeavors and provides grant funding to our teachers to help meet needs in their classrooms that would otherwise go unfilled.
What to know:
- Over 90,000 lights
- Over 3 miles of extension cords
- Tune your car radio to FM 97.1 and listen to the music coordinated with the light show!
Map of All Christmas Lights Locations
We hope you take some time to look around this holiday season, and find little bits of beauty wherever you go.
Have a favorite location we missed? Leave a comment with more places to see Christmas lights!
Our Ultimate Guide to Holidays in Iowa City offers answers to all your holiday questions, from Christmas Tree Farms to Santa Sightings and more!