Cincinnati Family Magazine

Your # 1 Hometown Family Resource

February 3, 2023

Mom Report – Holiday in Lights

Holiday in Lights is worth every twinkling light and even an extra visit this year - take it from Mom Reporter, Shelby Todd!

December feels like it comes so quickly! After Halloween, it’s like we blink and it’s Christmas time again. If you’re like me, it can sometimes feel like we don’t have enough time to do it all. One of our family’s absolute favorite holiday traditions to slow down and enjoy the view? Holiday In Lights at Sharon Woods: the only mile-long light show you can enjoy driving through a beautiful Hamilton county park! My husband and I have been enjoying Holiday In Lights every single year since we were just dating in high school! It has always been an incredible display of holiday cheer, but once we added kids to the mix, the magic totally multiplied.


This year, they have tons of new features: pixel light tunnel, more lighted trees, new light displays, special event nights, pictures with Santa, new Santaland entertainment and much more! They also sell new special effects glasses that make everything that much more fun! We attended on a Tuesday night a little after opening (6 p.m. on week nights) and it was not crowded at all! There was no wait.


After driving through the light show, we headed to Santaland. Although we have made Holiday In Lights an annual tradition, this was our first year attending Santaland. We had an incredible experience. It really was so nice! There were lots of games, educational info, animals and more for the kids to play and see while you wait for Santa. There was not much of a line when we got in. I do think a good tip to avoid the crowd would be to show up around opening. This could always change as Christmas approaches, but I would say a good idea if you want to beat the crowds.

Info on Santa: There’s no personal photography, but you can totally visit Santa without making a photograph purchase. I will say the photograph packages were pretty affordable compared to other places. They also have cute personalized ornaments and other things for purchase. Now let me tell you, this Santa was incredible. The best we’ve ever experienced. He took his time and really talked to the boys. He made them feel special. As a parent, this was so awesome to witness and see their excitement and cheer.

After seeing Santa, we were all on cloud 9! We stopped at the concession stand for treats, hot cocoa and hot apple cider. Right next to the concessions there was a train display. In another room we heard elves singing, so we followed the voices. There were elves signing and reading to the kids. The boys loved this! They sang and danced and asked me to take photos. It was so much fun! 

Holiday In Lights was a blast! It was the most perfect way to kick off the holiday season. Honestly, we might even come back before the holidays are over – it was that much fun! I am also very happy that we decided to visit Santaland. It was a great addition to our bright light tradition. Holiday in Lights goes on through Tuesday, December 31, including Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve (Santaland goes on through December 23; also note on December 26 is the Walk the Lights night, they will be closed to car traffic).

Admission is $15 per vehicle ($45 for buses and 15 passenger vans). Visit to check out Holiday in Lights & Santaland holiday hours before visiting. You’ll also find coupons! 

(Shelbie Todd;

About the Author