Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Downtown prepares for Carnival of Lights

This holiday season, the Carnival of Lights will delight visitors with a dazzling display of lights throughout the Central City from the waterfront through Midtown starting the week of Thanksgiving through January 3. The collaborative effort will feature architectural lighting, holiday d├ęcor, and holiday events including the Theatre of Lights in Old Sacramento and the Carnival at St. Rose at 7th & K streets.

“Downtown has always been a center for holiday activity. This year we’re taking it up a notch with the Carnival of Lights,” said DSP Executive Director Michael Ault. “Downtown, Old Sacramento and Midtown are partnering up to create a festive pedestrian experience that connects local events with nearby businesses, restaurants, theaters and other cultural attractions.”

Downtown landmarks including the Memorial Auditorium, Community Center Theatre, Elks Building, Hyatt Regency Hotel, Sheraton Grand Hotel, and Citizen Hotel will be aglow with colorful lighting as part of the cooperative program. The DSP, in collaboration with SMUD and the City of Sacramento, will illuminate K Street with LED twinkle lights and street poll decorations on J, K and L streets and Capitol Mall. The DSP is also partnering with private property owners and downtown businesses to participate in the holiday festivities by lighting their buildings.

Theatre of Lights
The Carnival of Lights will kick off in Old Sacramento the night before Thanksgiving with the annual Old Sacramento Tree Lighting and the Theatre of Lights, produced by the Old Sacramento Business Association. The Theatre of Lights will bring history to life through a narrated show of lights, sounds and visual effects. The light show will take visitors back to a time when the beloved poem The Night Before Christmas was first introduced in Sacramento in 1857. The first Tree Lighting of the season and Theatre of Lights inaugural night will take place on November 25 at 6 pm in Old Sacramento at Front and K streets. Two 10-minute light shows will run every Thursday through Sunday at 6:30 pm and 8:00 pm through January 3. For more information, visit

Carnival at St. Rose
The Carnival at St. Rose is a 5-week holiday event that will transform 7th and K streets into a festive winter carnival. The event will take place in lieu of the ice rink this holiday season due to conflicts in construction schedules with the K Street Streetscape project and renovation of St. Rose of Lima Park.

Open daily November 27 through January 3 from noon until 8:00 pm, the Carnival at St. Rose will feature a ferris wheel, classic carnival and arcade games, and food vendors. In the spirit of the season, the carnival will also incorporate live entertainment, a gingerbread house chef challenge, a craft fair, and charity events. Admission to the event for a two-hour session is $6 for children and seniors and $7 for adults. Private parties and group discounts are available with advance reservations.

The Carnival at St. Rose is produced by the DSP and is expected to draw visitors from all over the region. The event is presented by the Westfield Downtown Plaza and sponsored by the University of San Francisco – Sacramento Campus, UC Davis Children’s Hospital, KCRA 3, My58, Johnny Rockets and the Holiday Inn Capitol Plaza.

For more information, visit

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