NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Cheekwood Estate & Gardens invites guests to celebrate the sights and sounds of the holiday season with the return of Holiday LIGHTS, running Nov. 20, 2021 through Jan. 9, 2022. Tickets are now on sale for the annual festival that, in its seventh year, has become a beloved holiday tradition for Nashville residents and visitors alike as the 55-acre botanical garden is lit up with a brilliant display of more than a million lights for an immersive holiday experience that appeals to all ages.
“Each year, we enhance our lights display with more lights and new features so our guests can look forward to a unique experience year after year,” says Peter Grimaldi, Cheekwood VP of Gardens & Facilities. “We are especially excited about adding a whimsical peppermint pathway and shimmering tunnel of light to the Bradford Robertson Color Garden.”
Additionally, Cheekwood will introduce new elements to its “Children’s Wonderland” experience in the Bracken Foundation Children’s Garden—a canopy tree draped in dripping lights and a sparkling chandelier over the Grandy Scarlett Studio Pavilion.
Also new this year is an expansive Holiday Marketplace in the Frist Learning Center Great Hall, where daytime and evening visitors can shop among a carefully curated selection of tabletop and home decor, ornaments, nutcrackers, custom-scented candles, winter accessories, and gifts for children of all ages.
In the Historic Mansion & Museum, a 20-foot Orchid Tree adorned with varietals of the tropical flower takes center stage in the Loggia to complement this year’s Mansion décor theme, “A Botanical Holiday.” Visitors will also enjoy over 35 Nutcrackers on display throughout the period rooms.
Cheekwood will bring back seasonal favorites such as the Reindeer Village featuring two real reindeer, s’mores stations, and the Dancing Lights of TRAINS! display. Though Santa will not be on-site during Holiday LIGHTS, children can still get their wish lists to him by visiting the Frist Learning Center to drop off their letters in a special mailbox for Jolly Ole St. Nick.
Medical professionals, first responders and military personnel may enjoy 50 percent off admission for Holiday LIGHTS for up to five immediate family members on Monday nights as part of Cheekwood’s Military and Medical Mondays with a valid form of identification.
Cheekwood recognizes Holiday LIGHTS Presenting Sponsors, Truist Bank and Marlene and Spencer Hays Foundation. The seasonal festival will be open seven nights a week with the exception of Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Timed-entry tickets must be purchased online in advance. To learn more about Holiday LIGHTS and to purchase tickets visit cheekwood.org.
Cheekwood is considered one of the finest American Country Place Era estates in the nation. Formerly the family home of Mabel and Leslie Cheek, the extraordinary 1930s estate, with its 30,000-square-foot Mansion and 55 acres of cultivated gardens and expansive vistas, today serves the public as a botanical garden, arboretum, and museum with period rooms and art galleries, showcasing works from its permanent collection as well as traveling exhibitions. The property includes 13 distinct gardens including the Blevins Japanese Garden and the Bracken Foundation Children’s Garden, as well as a 1.5-mile woodland trail featuring modern and contemporary outdoor sculpture. Each year, Cheekwood plays host to seasonal festivals including Cheekwood in Bloom, Summertime at Cheekwood, Cheekwood Harvest and Holiday LIGHTS. Cheekwood is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, and is a three-time USA Today Top 10 Botanical Garden. In 2020, the grounds were awarded a Level II National Arboretum Accreditation by The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program and The Morton Arboretum. Cheekwood is located just 8 miles southwest of downtown Nashville at 1200 Forrest Park Drive. Daily hours of operation: Tuesday through Sunday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission to Cheekwood must be purchased in advance at cheekwood.org. For further information, call 615-356-8000 or visit cheekwood.org.