Kansas City's Best Christmas Lights
Kansas City sparkles in holiday splendor with magnificent displays across the metro! These are our top picks for the best Christmas lights in KC!
Most displays operate from Thanksgiving through Christmas from sunset (5:30) to 10:00; however, there are a few exceptions. Check websites to verify times.
Crown Center Square (2450 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, MO, www.crowncenter.com.Friday after Thanksgiving through Christmas. The tree is lit with a special ceremony (including fireworks choreographed to music) on Friday following Thanksgiving at 5:30. The 100-foot-tall tree is adorned with 7,200 lights. Tip: Beneath the mayor's tree enjoy a delightful wooden playground that makes a wonderful backdrop for family photos!
Legends Outlets Kansas City (1843 Village West Pkwy., Kansas City, KS, www.legendsshopping.com). Enjoy the lights Nov. 17 through Christmas. Unique lighting display on a 45-foot holiday tree created by a world-renowned technology-driven holiday lights team, all synchronized to music.
WinterFest at Worlds of Fun
Weekends Nov. 23- Dec. 30 at Worlds of Fun. Holiday cheer rings out at Worlds of Fun during the first annual WinterFest celebration. Thousands of sparkling lights transform the park with an inviting glow that warms the heart and lifts the spirit. Witness 10 live shows, meet over 16 iconic holiday characters, join 9 holiday activities like ice skating and cooking decorating, ride select park attractions, and create lasting memories with family and friends. We're especially excited to celebrate with Charlie Brown and Snoopy! Charlie, the gang, and a cast of 18 singers and dancers will present a Christmas Holiday Spectacular! This stunning display of holiday cheer includes high-kicking and a hefty amount of sequins to dazzle the audience. Charlie Brown even takes the stage to impress the audience with his extra special dance moves, but you can be assured the Snoopy and Lucy won’t let him steal the spotlight. All of the PEANUTS gang will be represented in this fast-paced spectacle, brought together with the talented performers who will delight with their harmonious vocals and fancy footwork in this Broadway-caliber show! Read our review & tips for WinterFest here.
Nov. 22 - Dec. 31, Downtown Kansas City, MO. Downtown KC’s all-encompassing holiday experience features five unique neighborhoods and something for everyone, including tours of trendy, urban homes, exclusive shopping offers and other festive sights and sounds. Experience this signature holiday event with a free KC Streetcar ride connecting downtown’s holiday events and happenings. From Crown Center and Union Station to the Crossroads and Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts to the Power & Light District and City Market – visit the mobile-friendly KC Streetcar site at KCStreetcar.org and jump to the Streetcar Tracker for real-time location of the Streetcars.
2018 Special Events:
- Dec. 8 from 10am-5pm, participate in the Urban Homes Tour. Downtown’s trendiest residential properties—from the Crossroads Arts District to the River Market—will open for public tours during the most popular event of Downtown Dazzle. Participants are invited to explore at their leisure from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. while traveling from one property to the next by using the KC Streetcar, walking or driving. Pick up your Downtown Dazzle Urban Homes Tour Guidebook at Visit KC’s office on Dec. 8 located at 1321 Baltimore Ave., Kansas City, MO 64105. For more information, visit DazzleKC.com.
- Special Dazzle pop-ups are planned throughout the season at various downtown locations where the Dazzle team will be handing out holiday swag, including the Dazzling Deals booklet, featuring more than 60 special offers from downtown-area merchants and attractions for exclusively for Dazzling Deals booklet holders!
Thurs-Sun Nov. 23 - Jan. 6 at Powell Gardens 1609 N.W. U.S. Highway 50, Kingsville, MO. A lighting exhibition, artfully curated by the Powell Gardens Horticulture staff, the Festival of Lights includes botanically-themed lighting displays that begin at the garden entrance and stretch along a winding pathway through six of the seven themed gardens.
Longview Lake Park (I-470 & View High Drive, Kansas City, MO, 816.503.4800); open Thanksgiving Eve through Christmas, Sun.-Thu., 5:30-10:00; Fri. & Sat., 5:30-11:00. This display is outstanding and worth the drive, even if you live 30-45 minutes away. It is also extremely popular, so weeknights are your best chance to avoid a long wait to see the display. Beware of deer en route as many live nearby!
Lee's Summit Magic Tree is located at I-470 and View High Drive (a great addition to your Christmas in the Park light-seeing trip). Thanksgiving - Christmas The tree is lit with more than 12,000 LED lights in every color of the rainbow. You are invited to pull into the drive, take photos with the family and share them on social media with #LSmagictree. Donations are accepted at the tree in partnership with Lee’s Summit Social Services to provide a charitable outlet for those interested in supporting the community’s families in need.
Country Club Plaza (Info Center: 4745 Central, Kansas City, MO, www.countryclubplaza.com). Take in the lights Thanksgiving through mid-January. Kansas City’s Christmas tradition begins with a lighting ceremony, complete with fireworks, from 6:00 to 7:00 on Thanksgiving evening. Enjoy more than 80 miles of lights. The best view is atop the parking lots.
At the Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead, 138th & Switzer in Overland Park. The display will run each night 5:00-10:00, Thanksgiving through early January. The 38-minute show is synchronized with music. Tune in to 90.5 Rose FM to hear holiday music as you watch this year's spectacular show. Bring some cocoa, cookies and blankets as you view the lights and hear the music from the warmth of your car. The display is at the main entrance of the Farmstead. Please turn off your vehicle's lights while watching the show.
FREE Nov. 30, Dec. 1, 2, 7, 8, & 9 at Pleasant Valley Baptist Church, Liberty, MO. Shows are 15 minutes long, and begin every 45 minutes at 6:00pm, 6:45pm, 7:30pm, 8:15pm, 9:00pm. This FREE drive-in Christmas light display will be synchronized with live musicians in the PV parking lot. It’s a family-friendly show that will capture the hearts of many. Audiences will tune their radios to hear live performances of Christmas favorites from the comfort of their own cars. Through a simple narrative the Gospel story will be weaved throughout the show - inviting guests to discover the true reason for the season. Guests can view the 15-minute show from the warmth of their vehicles on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Nov. 30 - Jan. 13, Beautiful lights in Sar-Ko-Par Trails Park, Lenexa, KS.
Nov. 26 - Dec. 2, INDOOR display at Liberty Hall, Lawrence, KS. Approximately 50 trees and 20 wreaths will be on display, decorated and donated by local individuals, groups and businesses. Viewing Times - Monday - Thursday: 10 AM - 8 PM. Friday & Saturday: 10 AM - 5 PM. Sunday: 10 AM - 2 PM. Admission: Suggested donation of $5 for adults and children older than 12. The gala Auction Party will be held on Friday, November 30 at 7:00 PM. Please see the Lawrence Festival of Trees Facebook page for more information about the Auction Party!
Downtown Marriott (200 W. 12th St., Kansas City, MO) The 20-story hotel provides an animated holiday display showing your favorite holiday characters and greetings featuring a synchronized display of 30,000 bulbs and 16.7 million colors. This annual celebration of lights marks the return of The Salvation Army's Annual Christmas Campaign.
Thanskgiving week - early 2019. A fresh holiday spirit is coming to City Market. For the first time in many years City Market will be set aglow as the roofline of each City Market building is trimmed in multicolored lights to brighten the season and add sparkle to evening shopping and dining through early 2019.
Vince & Associates Clinical Research (101st & Metcalf, Overland Park). From mid-November through Christmas, this display is beautifully choreographed to music for an animated light show your children will love! The display of over 175,000 LED lights is synchronized to music and is a major holiday attraction in the Kansas City area. Started by Dr. Brad Vince, this Holiday Lights Display takes three men about three weeks to install and synchronize. If you live in the Kansas City area or you will be visiting during the holiday season, stop by 103rd & Metcalf in Overland Park. Emmanuel Baptist Church across the street gives you the best view. Tune your radio to channel 96.9FM to enjoy the show!
Paulie's Penguin Playground 16617 Indian Creek Pkwy, Olathe, KS. This amazing Penguin Themed Christmas Display is an unforgettable explosion of holiday decor. This display also accepts donations for Leuekemia Lymphoma Society
Zona Rosa (I-29 & Barry Road, Kansas City, MO, www.zonarosa.com). See one of KC's beloved Christmas crowns featured Christmas tree in the town square. After seeing the lights, visit the Grove for a fun indoor playground.
Animated light show at Stagecoach Park (1205 E. Kansas City Rd., Olathe). The show features 41,000 lights and more than 16 million color combinations. The 16 minute drive-up show is filled with animation, elves and music played through your vehicle radio. The show will run through New Year’s Eve on Monday through Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday through Sunday 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Cornerstone Park (215 N. Center, Gardner). Christmas lights decorate Cornerstone Park. where special events (Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt, Lighting Ceremony, etc) are held throughout the season.
Candy Cane Lane
Outlook Street and 79th Street in Prairie Village, KS. This neighborhood decorates with amazing displays. See candy canes, giant Christmas trees, and beautifully lit homes.
Christmas Card Lane
Ridgeview & 151st Street in Olathe, KS. This neighborhood decorates with beautiful Christmas lights and giant wooden Christmas cards.
The Lane of Lights is located along Lovers Lane in East Valley Park in Excelsior Springs, MO. The Christmas Committee has created this lighted drive-through holiday display to give families and friends a destination on cold winter evenings. It’s a great way to top off or start an evening out to dinner or the movies, the school holiday performance or your family get-together. Volunteers will greet each vehicle as it enters the park. A donation of $5 per car is suggested. Enjoy the lights from Sunday – Thursday 5:30 – 9 p.m. and Friday & Saturday 5:30 – 10 p.m.
For more holiday events, see our guide to Christmas in Kansas City.