Looking for something to do that involves Christmas lights, a market, food and drink? Look no further than Glow Christmas, an indoor lights display hosted at Milner Gardens. Just minutes away from the Trinity campus, Milner Village Garden Centre hosts exactly that during the year – an indoor greenhouse of plants, gardening tools and home decor. With their grand opening of GLOW on November 23rd, the Gardens transformed into the large display, reminiscent of Van Dusen’s discontinued Enchanted event from last year.
Your Mars’ Hill correspondents attended media night, scoping out the indoor display. There are thoughts below as well as pros and cons so that you can deduce for yourself whether or not you should go and GLOW.
First impressions: Wow. It’s not everyday a big event happens in Langley like this, so our first impressions were one of grandeur. This place is huge, there is a lot offered.
Half way through: After some time pondering and eating our way through the VIP tent, we came to the question: “What is the point of looking at lights?…What exactly is it about twinkling bulbs of electricity that make us humans squeal, especially at Christmas-time?” We still can’t quite figure that one out, but were impressed with the amount of lights, and thoroughness of the planning. By far, the Icicle Forest was the highlight: hanging strands of lights protected in plastic tubes that you can walk through. Makes for a great photo or just all-around unique experience.
Now, ten things to consider before you go and visit GLOW:
- It’s close to Trinity. 6 minutes to be exact.
- Locally run and supported. Beyond Milner Gardens being one of Langley’s locally family-run greenhouses, the event features local businesses with goods for sale in the market. Trading Post, Agency Media and a host of other local businesses (and alum-involved businesses) are involved.
- It’s inside and not as cold as it would be outside.
- It’s family friendly. You can take a photo with Santa (for less than it costs at the mall), and there is plenty of space to eat, push a stroller, and hang out.
- The lights are beautiful! The 210 foot musical light walkway is tremendous and outstanding and there is a host of different structures and shapes. It’s simply beautiful to look at (and to try and imagine all of the work that went into it!)
- Okay, we added a sixth point. The food trucks outside are an awesome spin on what feels like a warm winter village, with a fire pit to boot! Great selection, from pizza to mini donuts. It’s all there.
- The price – an adult ticket costs $19.99 online or $25 at the gate. You can spend anywhere from 30 minutes zipping through the maze of lights or you can spend 2 hours walking around, eating, enjoying live music and having conversations with friends. There isn’t much to “do” other than look at lights, eat and listen to music, so if that’s your thing, $20 doesn’t seem too bad.
- Food and drink costs money too. If spending $20 just to get in doesn’t suit your fancy, then spending money on food and drinks is probably not your thing either. Food truck food is often good, but again, expensive.
- Moving around – there is fake grass on the ground and while it adds a “cozy” feel, it was a little difficult to get around, especially if you have a stroller. We realize cement underneath is not nearly as pleasant though.
- Being inside loses a bit of the whimsical Christmas feel. We get it, you can’t replicate Whistler in the Fraser Valley, but we would love to be outside and feel the crispness. Weirdly enough, we thought that the added effect of legitimate snow would have been nice (even though we’re aware that we don’t get that much). Something about being bundled up looking at lights is different than being semi-cold in a greenhouse looking at lights.
- Is this good for date night? Maybe? If you’re walking around holding hands in a semi-cold greenhouse,
- Instagrammable? 100%. This is where you want to be if you want that Insta feed to blow up. Great displays, although it might get more difficult once it turns to night.
- Cool, but pricey for a college student. Maybe we will go and drive around our neighbourhood once our neighbours put their Christmas lights up. But, perhaps it’s worth it for the Instagram hype.