SANTA & REINDEER
Santa is in his house, which is located in the Farm area, each Friday, Saturday and Sunday night from 5-9 p.m. His last night in 2018 is Sunday, December 23.
No. There is not charge to visit Santa.
No, there isn’t a photographer available in Santa’s house, but we’ve found that most people prefer to take pictures with their own cameras and smartphones.
The reindeer will be in the park until New Year’s Day.
Normally reindeer lose their antlers in the spring, but if a light shines on the reindeer their bodies think the days are getting longer and spring is coming. We try to eliminate artificial light sources so that they do not lose their antlers early.
Yes. The City of Mankato widened and paved the walking path in 2013, which makes it much easier for wheel chairs and strollers to travel along the path.
Yes. There are a limited number of handicapped parking stalls available in the park during event hours. Bring your handicapped parking pass and plan to arrive early.
Yes, there are heated restrooms in the park that are handicapped-accessible, and are located in the band shell near the vehicle entrance.
At the park we accept cash and check donations with checks made payable to Kiwanis Holiday Lights. We do accept credit card donations via the donate link in the navigation on our website. This brings up a link to Paypal where donations can be made.
No. We accept food and cash donations.
Non-perishable items not limited to but including cereal, pasta, macaroni & cheese, juice and boxed main dishes are accepted. In addition, diapers and personal care items are also collected.
Vehicles enter the park on Sibley Parkway and exit the same way. Pedestrians can enter Kiwanis Holiday Lights at Mound Ave (near Pathstone Living) or at the train trestle on the corner of Park Lane and Woodland Ave (near CHS).
No. You can access parking areas via Mound Avenue or Park Avenue. Parking is available in the neighborhood near Sibley Park or at the CHS parking lot on the South side of Sibley Park.
All vehicles enter and exit Kiwanis Holiday Lights on Sibley Parkway. Watch for the bright orange signage along Riverfront Drive. Pedestrians can park and enter on Mound Avenue (near Pathstone Living) or off Park Lane (near CHS).
Yes, concessions are available in our warming house every night. Items include hot apple cider, hot chocolate, soda, water, popcorn, cookies, candy bars, candy canes, and other snacks.
We have two radio stations within Kiwanis Holiday Lights 90.1 and 97.3. The welcome station as you enter the park is 97.3. It is filled with Christmas music, tidbits & trivia, and information about each nights sponsor, food shelf and volunteer groups. This station reaches nearly 1 mile outside of Sibley Park for those people waiting in line. 90.1 is our dancing lights station and we encourage people to change their dial upon entering the driving loop. This music is the exact same that plays through the speakers for the walking traffic and is programmed to be in sync with the lights!
Yes, you can do either (or both). There is a limited number of parking stalls along the driving route. Parking for walkers is also available in the CHS parking lot along Woodland Ave or along neighboring streets.
If you are in line by closing time (9 p.m. Sun-Thurs and 10 p.m. Fri-Sat) you will still be able to see the lights. We will send out a volunteer with a “last vehicle” sign at closing time to indicate where the line ends.
No, the City of Mankato does not allow dogs in Sibley Park.
We say to plan about 30 minutes walking through the lights at a minimum. This all depends on how long you spend in the dancing/musical lights area, if you take time to look at each of the 72 non-profit trees, check out the skating rink, buy some hot chocolate, stop and see Santa or any of our other amenities.
Yes, the tunnel is built to MNDOT specifications so all vehicles can drive under it.
Yes, we an entrance set up specifically for buses that allows them special access to the park, but a special pass is necessary. In addition, our volunteers can collect any food and cash donations the people on the bus have brought with. Please call (507) 385-9129 if your group is interested in bringing a bus so that we can issue a pass to approved groups.
Kiwanis Holiday Lights is a free event for all people and vehicles entering the park. We encourage cash donations which go to the non-profits that make the event possible. Food items are donated to local food shelves. Last year 17 different food shelves collected nearly 14 tons of foods and Kiwanis Holiday Lights donated over $50,000 back to the local non-profit community thanks to these good-will donations.
Yes, it is located in our Headquarters trailer in the park (located behind the restrooms/band shell). You can also call 507-388-1264 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you think you have lost an item in the park.
If our volunteers find a lost child they will take him/her to the Headquarters trailer located behind the band shell/restrooms to wait for their parent(s).
We’re sure happy that Kiwanis Holiday Lights has been so popular! We want to make sure the display is enjoyable for everyone, so there really isn’t any way for us to rush people through. Also, from what we’ve noticed, the cars travel pretty quickly through the displays. In order to avoid the lines, we encourage you either come early or on a week night when traffic is lighter. Or, park outside of Sibley Park and walk in. We feel walking through the displays is the best way to enjoy the lights – especially with the addition of our new “dancing lights” walking tunnel!
HORSE-DRAWN WAGON RIDES
Line up for the wagon rides starts right outside the concession warming house. Rides are $5 per person. The wagon leaves every half hour or unless the wagon if full. The ride takes 15-20 minutes through the entire park. Rides are generally on Friday-Sunday nights. Check the calendar on this website for specific dates and times (weather permitting).
The wagon rides generally take place on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights during Kiwanis Holiday Lights. Rides are $5 person and all proceeds are donated back to Kiwanis Holiday Lights. Check the calendar on this website for specific dates and times.
PARADE & OPENING CEREMONY
The vehicle entrance will open at 8:00. Prior to that, the park will be open exclusively for those walking through the park.
The lights will be turned on after the parade ends. Estimated time is 7:00.
People attending the parade are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets for along the parade route. There will be extremely limited seating in the warming house near the end of the parade.
The parade will start on Rogers St, Head down Mound Ave past Pathstone living, and end in Sibley Park at the bandshell where the winning float will be announced. At that time, Santa will turn on the lights! We guess this time will be around 7:00! Click here for a parade map.