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Friday 1 November 2019

Glow at the Gardens

Disclaimer: I was provided with complimentary tickets for this event.

Last week I visited Denver Botanic Gardens for the annual Glow at the Gardens Halloween event.

It was a frosty cold evening after a a day of snow, but the lights and displays were worth rugging up in layers for. The gardens were filled with amazing light displays, sculptures made of pumpkins, jack-o'lanterns of all sorts, spooky characters, and lots of children (and adults) in costumes trick or treating. It was such a fun event.

Last year when we visited Denver over Christmas break we attended the annual Blossoms of Light event and we loved it. So when I saw that there was a similar event in the lead up to Halloween, I couldn't wait to go.

Here's a look at all the fun...

Being a Halloween event, there were plenty of pumpkins on display. So many pumpkins! A giant pumpkin surrounded by flowers just inside the entrance, classic jack-o'lanterns, pumpkin heads floating in jars of fluid, sculptures of animals and plants made of pumpkins and lights, a teeny tiny pumpkin village, and the most intricately carved pumpkins you can imagine. If you can imagine it, and make it from a pumpkin, it was there!

There were even pumpkin carving pros on hand creating amazing designs in front of the crowds. I couldn't believe how fast their hands were moving! After watching a video I'd recorded on my phone my kids asked if I'd sped it up, as the speed at which their hands were moving just didn't seem possible! Pumpkins carved by the pros were on display upstairs in Marnie's Pavillion and they were stunning. I struggle to carve a regular jack-o'lantern face without making a mess, let alone something like these!

The light displays throughout the gardens were quite pretty with the trees and buildings lit up in an array of colors. Ghosts and ghouls appeared on snow covered buildings, black lighting brought out vivid neon colors on displays, lights flickered, flashed and changed colors, and spooky music helped set the scene. Lighted luminaries marked the pathways showing us which way to go as we wandered through the gardens taking in the sights.

The Woodland Mosaic Solarium was set up as a witches' lair with a cauldron bubbling away, cobwebs covering the walls, dozens of candles, and spooky items on every surface. Oh, and that bony fellow sitting in the corner! This building was one of my favorite displays plus it was a nice respite from the cold outside.

There was plenty of entertainment for visitors with fire performances, craft activities, carnival games, a neon photo booth, and ghouls wandering the gardens. This creature below changed colors once a child recited a magic spell provided by the witch. Seeing kids' faces light up at the magic was pretty cool. My kids didn't come along with me, but I'm sure they would have loved this. A giant animated face that appeared on a building interacted with children nearby asking them questions about their costumes and telling corny jokes - while the parents all looked around trying to work out where the person providing the voice was hiding! We never found him.

Glow at the Gardens is such a fun event. It is held every October for just one week in the lead up to
Halloween and tickets sell out fast. If you missed out on Glow at the Gardens this year make sure to keep an eye out for Blossoms of Light coming up in December. I'll be sharing our visit from last December soon.

Denver Botanic Gardens is located at 1007 York Street, Denver and is open seven days a week from 9am to 5pm, with extended hours for special (ticketed) events.

For more information visit https://www.botanicgardens.org/

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