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Layton City's holiday lights on now through Dec. 31
Article Published 11/25/2013
Some 100,000 people are expected to enjoy Layton City’s annual holiday lighting display this season in Commons Park.
New this year is an “Old Man Winter” lighted figure, as well as three deer. This brings the total number of lighted figurines in Layton’s display, located just east of the Surf ‘N Swim and north of Layton High School, to a record 275, making it one of the state’s largest lighting collections.
In addition, the city has added an additional 50 feet to its pedestrian arch.
According to Brock Hill, of the Layton City Parks Department, the use of primarily animal figures in Layton’s holiday display began back in 1992.
James “Woody” Woodward, former Layton Parks Supervisor, started this holiday tradition in Layton City, with the original name of “Santa’s Safari.”
It has become a tradition to add new items each year to the display, at least as much as infrastructure will allow.
Hill stated that this year’s new items were purchased through the generous donations made by some of last year’s visitors.
“Love it!”; “Awesome”; “It helps our family get in the holiday spirit”; “Can we go through the tunnel again?”; “How many lights are there?” are typical comments Hill said he hears each year on the city’s holiday collection.
The special tunnels, for vehicles and pedestrians, are among the single most popular aspect of the display. A tree with lights that are synchronized to music is also a hit. Hill also expects the new “Old Man Winter” figure to also draw special attention this year.
It was a nearly three-month-long project for Layton City to put together this year’s display of holiday lights and figures.
Hill said he and parks employees starting hanging lights on Sept. 1 and worked on them right up to the Monday before Thanksgiving to switch-on-the-lights.
Weekends are always the busiest times to view Layton’s lights. The single busiest night Hill stated, is Christmas Eve.
“It has become a great annual tradition for families,” Hill noted, for Dec. 24.
Besides the obvious enjoyment of the lights, Layton’s display is also another plus factor that helps unite families and residents with a free, local holiday tradition.
How long does it take to properly enjoy Layton’s lighting display?
Hill suggests allowing 10 to 15 minutes on a weeknight to drive through the display. It may take up to 30 minutes on weekends to drive through it, though.
For walking, plan on 30 to 45 minutes and dress warm.
Hill encourages visitors to walk through the lighting display.
“This is one of the reasons we added the pedestrian arch, Hill stated.
Donations given this year will be used to improve the holiday display next year.
Pedestrians have their safety enhanced by having their own separate walking lane.
Vehicles driving through the display should enter Constitution Way, off Wasatch Drive, by using the east side of the loop, by the LDS Seminary Building. The road becomes one way at the large tunnel.
Those who plan to walk can park by the Surf ‘N Swim building and head east.
This year’s holiday lights will be on nightly at 5 p.m. and remain on until 11 p.m. The lighting display will continue 37 total days this year and will have its final night this season on Dec. 31.