by TJ AndersonThis prediction from Dwell magazine, from late last year, just made its way into my Facebook feed: “Step Aside, Subway Tile — Penny Tile Is the New Classic.” Penny tile,
The Best Christmas Lights Displays In And Around Nashville
by TJ Anderson
Certain things just have the undeniable power to make it really feel like Christmas — candy canes, mistletoe, egg nog… and, of course, lights sparkling and twinkling on your neighbors’ homes as you drive home from work.
If bright and blinking Christmas lights tend to be what gets you in the spirit of the season, it’s easy to find impressive displays in and around Nashville. And since we’ve just passed the post-Thanksgiving threshold, most if not all are up and going now.
Here, a few of the best options for enjoying holiday lights in the area, whether you’d like to wander around, be carried or stay comfortably in one place, cocoa in hand.
Some of Nashville’s best Christmas lights displays
Holiday Lights at Cheekwood
A majestic mansion and gorgeous gardens flooded with twinkling lights and festive displays — hard to picture something more classic-Christmassy than that. This year, Belle Meade’s Cheekwood pulled out all the stops with their Holiday Lights display, with 750,000 lights extending from the mansion onto the grounds, plus carolers and s’mores pits (!) and live reindeer (!!!) and lots more. Tickets range from $22-$25 for adults, $17-$20 for young folk (cheaper if you’re a Cheekwood member), and it’s open every night from 5 to 10 through January 3 (except for Christmas Day).
A Country Christmas at Gaylord Opryland Resort
An almost overwhelming amount of holiday stuff happens every year at the Gaylord Opryland Resort, from the annual ICE! sculptures and festivities (this year with a Nutcracker theme) to Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical. If you’re hunting for sparkling, twinkling, blinking times, it’s pretty much the place to be. Think you had a task with decorating your living room? Over the expanse of the resort, they’ve put up a staggering 2 million lights, and the quality matches the quantity. Probably the best, most festive way to enjoy all that: taking a horse-drawn carriage ride through the property and decorations. Carriages run evenings through January 2 (5 to 10 Sundays through Thursdays, 5 to 11 Fridays and Saturdays), and a ride costs $9.99 for adults, $6.99 for kids (a private carriage is $49.99). Tickets are available online.
Metro Christmas Tree Lighting
Ours may not exactly be the Rockefeller Center tree lighting, but the Metro Nashville Christmas Tree isn’t a slouch either, and the annual Lighting is a fun way to swing into the season with the family. This year’s lighting is set for Friday, December 4 at 6 p.m. in Public Square Park (1 Public Square downtown), and Mayor Megan Barry will be there to preside over the light-up. There’ll be live music, drinks and food and all-around neighborly Christmas vibes. It’s free, and you can RSVP online.
Holiday Lights Carriage Tours in Hillsboro West End
Want something a little more low key? The historic Hillsboro West End Neighborhood’s annual Holiday Lights Carriage Tours offer an opportunity to explore a beautiful Nashville neighborhood, all sparkled up for Christmas, over a 30-minute ride. You’ll get serenaded by the Fannie Battle Carolers, enjoy hot cider and get to know a part of town that’s stocked with lots of lovely historic homes. The carriage tours run Saturday, December 5, and Sunday, December 6, leaving from the Nashville First Seventh Day Adventist Church (2800 Blair Blvd. and Natchez Trace). Tickets are $22.50 per person, and there are still a bunch of spaces left on both days — check out availability and grab your tickets online.
Lipton Lights in Franklin
This one: a true testament to the creative spirit of our neighbors. Since 2008, Alan Sielbeck and his family have been welcoming neighbors to check out the light display at their Franklin home. That in and of itself isn’t terribly interesting. But the Lipton Lights (named for their street) aren’t your average home decorations — 10,000 color-changing LED lights are animated and synchronized to music broadcast locally on 107.7 FM, making for a thoroughly festive and high-tech time. And it’s been drawing enthusiastic, appreciative crowds for years — which inspired Sielbeck and fam to harness the yuletide spirit, putting out a donation box that raises funds for local pet adoption agency Happy Tales Humane (an effort after my own heart). This year’s display kicked off Saturday, and will run nightly through New Years (5 to 10 Sundays through Thuesdays, 5 to 11 Fridays and Saturdays) at 213 Lipton Ct, Franklin. More info at the Lipton Lights Facebook page.
Have any other lights displays/shows you think we should know about? Tell us about your favorites on our Facebook page.
If you're hoping to give yourself the gift of a new home this year, drop us a line and let us know what you're looking for!
TJ Anderson is a Nashville Realtor with Benchmark Realty who's helped countless clients both buy a home and sell a home in Nashville, Tennessee. He blogs about Nashville regularly, from Nashville-area....
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