Friday, December 11, 2009

Starry Nights

I really wanted to go to Starry Nights, the massive LED light display at Shelby Farms park, a couple of weeks ago when they had the option to walk, run, bike, or skate through the 1.5 mile course but not only was it insanely expensive ($20 per adult and $10 per kid), it was too cold.

For whatever reason, Warren had no interest in going in the car, so I recruited my friend, Shiloh, and her daughter, Lydia, to maximize the $20 per car experience. Shiloh's a pagan, and I'm a Jew, but we both thought our kids would enjoy the experience. (Actually, I just wanted to support our awesome local utility company.)

There was a bit of a line to get in when we arrived at 7:30pm, but it provided us ample time to chat and listen to music. Once you get to the gate you can tune your radio to 104.1 (I think) and listen to the Starry Nights soundtrack by local artists. I was really excited about this part since a couple of my favorite musicians--Robby Grant and Jeff Hulett--were included. However, after a few songs by other artists, Shiloh and I could take no more. Luckily I had downloaded Robby's entire Christmas album the week before, so I plugged in my iPod. Jiro had also brought along a CD with 40s style jingles from his upcoming Holiday play, so we supplemented with that too. (Might I suggest downloading the Makeshift Music Oh Holy Crap Christmas CD for free before you go?)

While we were waiting, Shiloh lamented that we didn't have a thermos full of eggnog for the front seat and hot chocolate for the back. (Warren totally would have thought of that.) There was a guy selling hot dogs and hot chocolate right past the entrance, but we didn't have enough cash to supply three kids with weenies and marshmallows. Thankfully there were 1.5 million LED lights to distract them from their grumbling stomachs!

The light displays were absolutely fantastic. There was much ooh-ing and ahh-ing from both the kids and adults. It was also way more generally festive than flat out Christmasy. There was the obligatory nod to Hanukah and Kwanza, and Shiloh even noted a few Pagan images! I especially loved the rolling ball that ended in a Kapow! and the "underwater" section. The 1.5 miles was a good distance, but we all wanted MORE! (About a billion trillion people were in attendance, so maybe it will continue to grow.)

By the end of the road the kids were all singing Christmas carols and acting like little angels. Had it not been so short-lived I might have thought a miracle occurred!

I'm making Warren to come along for another viewing, replete with corn dogs and egg nog.

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