Boothbay shines as a favorite summer vacation destination, but is alive and all aglow in December, too!
Four years ago, in December 2015, I attended Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens inaugural “Gardens Aglow” light display with 150,000 lights shining brightly. We took a road trip from New Hampshire, stopping for lunch at A Taste of Maine and arrived for the early 4:30 entry. It was an unseasonably warm evening with temps starting out in the 50s and only dropping into the high 40s. As the sun went down and the lights came up, the gardens were transformed into a phantasmagoria of an enchanted dream! Only a light blanket of snow could have made it more magical. One of my favorite parts that year was having fun looking for the elves that were hidden among the lights. We had our checklist and were rewarded with a candy cane prize if we found them all!
“Gardens Aglow” has grown to 650,000 lights over the past years and this year I visited again for the 5th Annual Light Display. I didn’t see any of my little elf friends, but there were fairy houses and lots of Moose to be found.
The towns of Boothbay & Boothbay Harbor have joined in the festivities extending the season for many local businesses. Many shops and restaurants close after Columbus Day, but reopen for the Early Bird sales on the Saturday before Thanksgiving and remain open for Boothbay Lights. Events include “Gardens Aglow,” “Festival of Trees,” “The Dough Ball and Gingerbread Spectacular,” “The North Pole Express” at the Boothbay Railway Village, “Holiday Sparkle Fireworks,” and “The Harbor Lights Festival” with Santa arriving by boat! Visit the Boothbay Lights website for details at https://www.boothbaylights.com/ . Food Trucks A-GO 2019 is set up on Wiscasset Road as you enter Boothbay and has a light display of 60,000 lights in addition to Gardens Aglow!
“Gardens Aglow” is now open Thursdays through Sundays, 4-9 p.m. and daily from Dec. 19th through New Year’s Eve with the exception of Christmas Eve. Get your tickets online so you don’t miss out. Walk-ins will not be allowed entry during sold out time periods. I just may have to go back if they get some more snow!