Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Go Toward the Lights

Years ago I interviewed a woman who was visiting from Russia. One thing that struck her about the United States was that almost everyone decorated the outside of their homes for the Christmas season. She was impressed that Americans did this for other people to enjoy.

There are many places to view holiday lights in Northeast Ohio. Some venues charge you to look at theirs, but you can see quite a few free dazzling displays in public settings, such as Crocker Park in Westlake (seen in the photo) and in neighborhoods throughout the region.

Here is a sampling:

Cleveland’s Public Square – The official lighting ceremony was during Winterfest on Nov. 24, but you can enjoy the display while driving or walking through the square. I haven’t been able to find out how long this display will be up, but I think it’s safe to assume it will be there at least through early January.

Tower City – Whether you’re shopping or just passing through, it’s worth your while to stop and take in the festive surroundings.

5th Street Arcades – The Euclid Arcade and the Colonial Arcade are beautiful any time of year, but they step it up during the holidays.

Playhouse Square – The Festival of Trees goes through Saturday in the Allen Theater lobby. (Does it seem odd to anyone else that it ends before Christmas?) Playhouse Square also will be decked out for the holidays.

Nela Park – This tradition on Noble Road in East Cleveland has been going strong for more than 90 years. You can see the display’s 500,000 LED lights and replica National Christmas Tree after 5:30 p.m. daily through Jan. 2.

Seabury Avenue – Almost every house on this Fairview Park street takes part in this annual tradition that apparently dates to 1953. Neighbors walk through and others drive from all over to see the spectacular display of lights and themed decorations.

Where are your favorite free spots to view holiday lights?

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