The Dallas Zoo has announced that its holiday tradition, Dallas Zoo Lights, will be a socially-distant, drive-thru experience this year.
The event, presented by Reliant, will allow guests to enjoy the lights without leaving the comfort of their vehicle.
From Nov. 20 through Jan. 3, guests can drive through a winter wonderland featuring over one million lights and elaborate lighted displays.
The driving path is more than one mile long, and it will take guests through areas of the Zoo that have not been open to the public for years, the Dallas Zoo said.
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This year's event will require a separate timed ticket that must be purchased online in advance so that the Zoo may control traffic and minimize wait times.
According to the Dallas Zoo, guests can select a window of time to attend the event, and they should arrive at the Zoo during that window so they can join the queue for the drive-thru.
"Despite this year being one of the most challenging we've ever faced, we felt we had to find a way to deliver on what already has become a must-see holiday tradition for so many North Texans," Gregg Hudson, Dallas Zoo president and CEO, said. "With a few adjustments, we've been able to reinvent Dallas Zoo Lights Presented by Reliant as a safe, socially distant drive-thru experience. We're so grateful that our presenting sponsor Reliant is as excited about this drive-thru concept as we are, and we're thankful to have their support as we roll out something new this holiday season."
The drive-thru experience will feature light-wrapped trees, lighted decor, and animal and holiday displays including themed vignettes, Santa's candy cane lane, and a trio of penguins on an Antarctic adventure, the Dallas Zoo said.
Guests can pre-order a gift bag full of holiday goodies like hot chocolate, popcorn, and holiday sweets to share in the car as they drive through the Zoo. These gift bags will be delivered to guests' car windows as they wait to enter.
Guests can also listen to a holiday soundtrack provided by the Zoo via AM radio as they travel along the drive-thru path.
"At Reliant, lighting up the holidays is what we do best, and we love sharing the joy of the season with the Dallas-Fort Worth community," Elizabeth Killinger, president of Reliant, said. "We're thrilled the Zoo created this unique way to get in the holiday spirit."
The event will take place from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. each night. The Dallas Zoo reminded guests that most animals will have gone to bed at this hour, so animals will not be viewable along the drive-thru path.
The Reliant Holiday Village is located outside at the end of the drive-thru, giving guests the opportunity to park, walk around, and take photos while remaining socially-distant.
Tickets for Dallas Zoo Lights go on pre-sale for Dallas Zoo members on Monday, Nov. 2, and all remaining tickets go on sale Thursday, Nov. 5.
Dallas Zoo members will receive a $15 discount on their admission ticket, making the cost of a Dallas Zoo Lights ticket $50 per car for members.
General Dallas Zoo Lights event tickets at $65 per car.