Van Dusen Festival of Lights 2021 season
Due to scheduling conflicts and the inclement weather conditions of late, I was only able to catch the last day of the annual Festival of Lights held at the Van Dusen botanical garden. To their credit, the show changes year to year, with new and different light displays and photogenic sculptures, an asset for those who continue to visit year after year.
Here are some of the highlights I was able to capture, avoiding the larger than usual crowds that gathered on the last day (January 3rd, 2022), which also happened to be warmer and dryer than those past. Please note, I bypassed most of the more photogenic photo ops stations, as to avoid the lengthly lines of individuals queued up to take a selfie with them. I am only posting photos that best incapsulates the sentiment of the event as a whole.
For those who missed the show here are some other options for taking in some seasonal lights. After all, with the latest bout of restrictions and the hangover of the festive season now past, the city is in dire need of outdoor joy and entertainment. Luckily, although Christmas and New Years have come and gone, a few of the lights that marked the occasion are still up and available for those who know where to go, to go, and to admire therein.
Burnaby leverages it height with a display for those willing to traverse its mountain. At the base of Simon Fraser University, take in the city skyline below and the trees that tower high, above.
Along Willingdon Street, between Hastings and just after Brentwood Mall, the public space hosts several clusters of Eco-sculptures crafted by local artists. Figures and characters constructed from winter greens and miscellaneous leaves, branches, and botanicals. All given life through light and poses in motion. Fashion forward Angels a glow, handsome stallions rearing, and most noteworthy: a carriage befitting of Cinderella, that you can actually climb into.
Lafarge Lake is a manmade lake located in Coquitlam, at the Lafarge sky train station. And every winter season it is decorated for festive merriment. The 0.7 mile path, that lines the lake is decorated with a bevy of lights. Garlands spiral around tree trunks and characters are given motion through blinks and twinkles. Walk around the main path, but be sure to take in all the tangents and mini loops, that not only elongate the walk, but offer varying points of view as well.
Lights become reindeer, swans, turtles, and fish. There is a series dedicated to celebrating winter, one for Canadian patronage, and another with hobbits in a tree house. There is even a chandelier and the city’s name spelled out in lights. Dress warmly and plan accordingly as there is plenty to do and see. And with complimentary parking, and no fee you can return time and time again if you don’t get a chance to take it all in.
In short go out there and find joy wherever and however you can take it.