Sunday, November 01, 2009
Get in the holiday spirit with a trip to Virginia Beach
If it’s the
colorful, twinkling lights that awaken your spirit,
plan a visit to
This is the
only time of the year cars are invited to drive on the boardwalk to enjoy the
"It’s just the most beautiful display of lights from one end of the boardwalk to the other," said Steve Proctor of Moneta. He and his wife, Mary Jane, honeymooned there over the holidays in 2001.
"They give you a CD to play in the car describing the unique features of the displays with Christmas music playing in the background," Proctor added.
The event is open daily in December from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.; admission is $12 per car.
Although signs of Christmas begin appearing in late November, the official start of the season is the city’s Holiday Parade at the Beach on Dec. 5. Along with thousands of parade-watchers, there are dozens of marching bands, decorated floats, school children, dance troupes, organizations and numerous other groups that come together to share the excitement of the season. Of course, Santa makes an appearance.
You can see more of Santa’s toy extravaganza nearby at Hunt Club Farm’s "Magical Forest Toyland." Just 10 minutes from the beach, the farm invites visitors to browse its Winter Wonderland Christmas Barn filled with hundreds of animated animals and elves preparing for the holidays. Children are challenged to wander a "light maze" while parents shop for country holiday items, handmade fresh wreaths, gift baskets and other treats.
prefer a gentler, musical holiday celebration, schedule your visit to include
one of the performances at the
Proctors also strongly recommended a trip to the
For a truly
memorable experience, reserve a spot on one of the center’s two-hour
whale-watching boat trips. From late December through mid-March, humpback and
fin whales migrate off the coast of
looking for more holiday magic, head out for what’s known as
Closer to home
Lake residents can enjoy the annual Christmas light display at the Elks National Home in Bedford,a tradition since 1953. A lighting ceremony will take place Dec. 11 at 5 p.m.The display, which features approximately 50,000 lights and is enjoyed by driving through the grounds, is open each evening through New Year’s Eve from 5:30 to 10.