As a child, my Christmas season was full of snowball fights, sledding and ice skating. While a white Christmas may be a bit too much to hope for in sunny Tucson, Arizona, we do have our own traditions here. We decorate our homes with chili lights and put colored lights on our cactus. But there is one neighborhood that really gets into holiday decorating, and it has become a Christmas tradition in Tucson.
Winterhaven in Tucson, Arizona
For over 60 years the wonderful neighborhood of Winterhaven in Tucson, Arizona has delighted residents with its incredible lights and decorations. Winterhaven is located between Prince and Ft. Lowell and Country Club and Tucson Blvd. Over 250 residents decorate their homes and yards with amazing displays. This festival has been held every year since 1949 with the exception of one year in the 1970s. According to their website, the residents of Winterhaven voted the festival off that year due to the energy crisis.
There is no charge for admission; however, a donation is requested for the Food Bank. Last year, over $23,000 and 33,000 pounds of food were donated to the Food Bank through the festival. This year the festival runs from December 11th through the 26th from 5:30 p.m. until 10 p.m. Visitors may walk through the neighborhood during any of these evenings. The neighborhood can be driven through on December 14th, 16th and 26th only. You can visit the Winterhaven website for a map and more information. Be aware that there are no official parking areas and drive-through nights can be crowded.
Hayrides and Monster Trucks
Another way to view the display is through a hayride or horse drawn wagon. You will want to make reservations for this in advance. Holiday Hayrides is also offering Monster Truck rides on the drive through evenings this year. For more information you can call or visit the following websites;