Best Of Indy 2019: Holiday Light Shows

Winterlights at Newfields

Courtesy Newfields

These flashy productions have become a (bulb-strung) cottage industry in Indy lately. Here, a few of our favorites for the illuminati.


When this spectacle debuted at Newfields (4000 Michigan Rd., 317-923-1331) in 2017, it was fair to wonder if anyone would pay $25 for a ticket. Almost 180,000 visitors later, it’s also fair to congratulate CEO Charles Venable on its success. The abstract patterns in the trees and lights timed with Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker make this the premier light show for cultured adults. $20–$25 per person.

Christmas at the Zoo

Now in its 52nd year, this kid-friendly show must confuse the hardier animals (seals, bears, tigers) still out roaming their environments. Nevertheless, the tunnel of lights and giant Christmas trees (“We Three Trees”) have survived for decades for a reason. Free with Zoo (1200 W. Washington St., 317-630-2001) admission.

A Merry Prairie Holiday

Conner Prairie (13400 Allisonville Rd., Fishers, 317-776-6000) throws its handmade hat in the ring this year with a light show that already has a strong following in Central Indiana. Reynolds Farm Equipment, which has been delighting children with its glowing Abominable Snowman and reindeer for 28 years, donated the display to the museum. $16–$20 per person.

Lights at the Brickyard

For those who don’t want to brave the chill, this drive-through show at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (4790 W. 16th St., 317-492-8500) offers an opportunity to stay warm. First strung in 2016, the exhibition boasts more than 3 million bulbs. Like everything at the track, it’s big. $40–$60 per car.

Circle of Lights

The lighting of the “World’s Largest Christmas Tree” on November 29 will benefit from the $8 million audiovisual upgrade Monument Circle (One Monument Circle, 317-232-7615) just received. Projectors will transform buildings there into screens for holiday-themed videos. Free.

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