DETROIT (WWJ) – Now that the weather feels more like winter, it’s time to get into that holiday spirit. And what better way to do that than taking a trip to the Detroit Zoo for their Wild Lights holiday light display.

The zoo says this year’s display is bigger and brighter than ever, with more than five million twinkling LED lights illuminating buildings, trees and more than 230 animal sculptures on a trail through the front half of the zoo.

New features include an interactive “field of lights” in front of the Wildlife Interpretive Gallery – where nearly 600 3-foot light tubes sway to music – and an Antarctic-themed digital projection display on the Polk Penguin Conservation Center. Also new is a bug display in the Main Picnic Grove, featuring giant insects such as a praying mantis, scorpion, centipede and ladybugs.

Wild Lights will be held Nov. 18-19 and 24-26 and Dec. 1-3, 8-10, 15-17, 20-23 and 26-31, 2017. Tickets are $10-$16 in advance – based on the hour and day – and $16 at the gate for guests ages 2 and older (children under 2 are admitted free); parking is $7. Timed-entry tickets can be purchased online or at the gate. A limited number of tickets are also available at all Michigan Kroger stores.

Wild Lights also features holiday entertainment and activities for kids of all ages, including ice carving and choral performances on select nights. A craft station will allow children to make holiday cards for distribution to pediatric patients at Children’s Hospital of Michigan.

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer 4-D” will be showing at the Wild Adventure Zone’s 4-D Theater ($5 with admission). Guests can purchase a package for $18 that includes admission to Wild Lights and “Rudolph.” A Winter Rink package for $18 includes admission to the event and a skating session on the 2,400-square-foot Glice rink.

Carousel rides, seasonal refreshments, holiday spirits, photos with Santa Claus (until Dec. 23), Wild Lights souvenirs and zoo-themed holiday gifts will also be available for purchase. The Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, highlighting some of the world’s most spectacular photography, is included with admission.

The Holden Reptile Conservation Center, Edward Mardigian Sr. River Otter Habitat and Jane and Frank Warchol Beaver Habitat will be open during Wild Lights; the remainder of the animal habitats and buildings will be closed.

For more information, call 248-541-5717 or visit


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