December 5th, 2021

Winter Lights Festival is on!


By Lethbridge Herald on November 25, 2021.

Herald photo by Al Beeber Visitors to Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden will see a view like this and many other spectacular light displays when the Winter Lights Festival opens tonight. Tickets are available online with 150 guests allowed for each time slot.

Al Beeber
Lethbridge Herald
abeeber@lethbridgeherald.com
Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden is ready to celebrate winter! Its Winter Lights Festival opens to the public tonight.
Now in its sixth year, the festival has become a winter tradition for Lethbridge residents and visitors to the city, attracting 20,000 people last year alone. That attendance figure was a 17.6 per cent increase over 2019 despite COVID-19 restrictions.
Tonight, the public will get its first look at the new Bunka Centre in front of the garden.
All visitors to the festival will be required to wear masks unless they are eating or drinking. Tickets will be sold online for specific times with a maximum of 150 guests allowed per time slot. Prospective visitors are being asked to purchase their tickets in advance which they can do by clicking a link on the garden website at http://www.nikkayuko.com/tickets.
Time slots are every half hour between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.
Various admission prices and packages are available. Adult regular admission for those 17 and up is $12.50 Child package and admission for those 6-12 is $11. A student package and admission, for those aged 12-16 and students with ID is also $11.
A friendship package, which includes a minimum of two admissions to a maximum of four is $12. Each ticket includes on admission, one matcha maple cookie and one drink – coffee, tea or water.
A family package costing $11 each includes a minimum of five admissions up to a maximum of 10. Each package also includes one admission, one matcha maple cookie and one drink.
With about 170,000 lights gracing trees, shrubs and garden features, the Garden is a true spectacle. From a replica of Mount Fuji to several igloos, and a kaleidoscope of colours, Nikka Yuko gardeners have created a masterpiece.
Melanie Berdusco, Marketing and Events manager for the garden, said recently there is hope to keep it going through the Brier at the Enmax Centre which opens March 5. The festival is slated to close Feb. 28.
“For the general admission for the Winter Lights Festival you are not required to show proof of vaccination because it is outdoors” and there are capacity limits, said Berdusco last week during a preview of the festival
Tours of the four-acre garden will include a maximum of 150 people per half hour tour, she said.
Prospective visitors are being asked to purchase their tickets in advance which they can do by clicking a link on the garden website at http://www.nikkayuko.com/tickets.
Time slots are every half hour between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.
The year-round Bunka – bunkea means ‘culture’ in Japanese – features two exhibit spaces as well as spaces for meetings and community events and a cafe. Construction began on the facility in the fall of 2020. It will open in several stages starting tonight. It will become fully operational on July 14 — the 55th anniversary of the garden.

 

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