Dec. 20, 2019 – The Lights of Wonder display opened at Centennial Square. It will run until Jan. 4. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)

Downtown Victoria welcomes the Lights of Wonder holiday village

The free light display and market is open at Centennial Square until Jan. 4

Centennial Square has been transformed into a forest of lights for the first Lights of Wonder Display.

The holiday light village was a massive purchase by the Downtown Victoria Business Association (DVBA), which bought the collection for $500,000 paid over the next five years.

The festival has transformed the square into a valley of lights featuring illuminated trees and features, as well as live entertainment including performers from the SKAM Festival and music.

“There’s no tickets, no gates no fences; people can come enjoy the space as much as they like,” said DVBA executive director Jeff Bray. “It’s a gift from the downtown businesses to the region, so we’re really excited to be at this point today.”

ALSO READ: Massive holiday light village coming to downtown Victoria

The Lights of Wonder was originally set to open on Dec. 13, but faced some delays when the set-up team faced technical difficulties. Originally the DVBA had also planned on installing food vendors, merchants and a beer garden, but it ran out of time this year to attain all the health permits.

“Nothing of this scale has been done in Centennial Square, so we’re breaking new ground,” Bray said. “As we ventured in we discovered various health regulation and this year made it too difficult to do… there’s just not a lot of room for food trucks, but that’s certainly something we’re going to look at is how we can explore those options next year. But, we want people to explore downtown as well and check out some of those food options.”

Comparatively, other annual holiday investments at the site cost around $130,000, even when that only meant renting equipment such as a Ferris wheel or an ice rink. With the purchase of the displays, the DVBA plans on bringing in new versions of the Lights of Wonder every year.

ALSO READ: Technical difficulties delay Victoria’s $500,000 Christmas light village

“We’re excited already for next year for how we can bring more community groups in to enliven the space, put on different performances, and bring different themes,” Bray said.

The display will be open to the public for free in the evenings between now and Jan. 4.

The lights will be on Sunday through Thursday from 4 to 9 p.m., and Friday through Saturday from 4 to 10 p.m. It will be closed Dec. 25 and 31.

For more information visit lightsofwonder.ca.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com

ChristmasChristmas holiday

 

Dec. 20, 2019 – The Lights of Wonder display opened at Centennial Square. It will run until Jan. 4. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)

Just Posted

L to R - Westshore Towing owner dave LeQuesne and Peninsula Towing owners Meghan and Don Affleck believe the cost of dealing with abandoned vehicles, boats, Rvs and campers is a significant financial burden. (Rick Stiebel/News Staff)
Towing the line: Vancouver Island tow truck operators at a loss with abandoned vehicles

Dealing with derelict boats, RVs, trailers, vehicles adds up to thousands in uncompensated costs

Lyric John-Cliffe and Cory Cliffe sing a traditional Laichkwiltach canoe song by the Campbell River Estuary. Photo by Binny Paul/Campbell River Mirror
Learning the land: restoration and education collide on the Campbell River estuary

Wei Wai Kum First Nation project passing the baton of environmental stewardship to seven generations

Comox Valley Unhoused executive director Sam Franey, right, is pictured at the Comox Valley Art Gallery with Jagmeet Singh, leader of Canada’s New Democratic Party, and Ronna-Rae Leonard, BC NDP candidate for the Courtenay—Comox riding. Scott Stanfield photo
Housing, for the unhoused, by the unhoused

Comox Valley man dedicated to battling homelessness after spending five years on the streets

The 21st annual Japanese Cultural Fair streams online Oct. 24 from noon to 3 p.m. (Facebook/Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society)
Esquimalt’s Japanese Cultural Fair takes tastes, experiences and cultures online

21st annual free event streams Saturday, Oct. 24 starting at noon

Environment Canada is releasing scientific evidence to support banning most single-use plastics next year, in a Jan. 30, 2020 story. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Editorial: Ban on single-use plastics dwarfed by pandemic plastic pollution

It’s a step in the right direction but we have a long march ahead of us

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Conservation officers hope the public can provide information about who shot and left a bull and cow Roosevelt elk near Spruston Road, south of Nanaimo. (Facebook photo)
Pair of Roosevelt elk shot and left in woods south of Nanaimo

Conservation officers hope public can help find who killed the animals near Spruston Road

BC Liberals Leader Andrew Wilkinson, BC Greens Sonia Furstenau, BC NDP John Horgan (The Canadian Press photos)
British Columbians vote in snap election called during COVID-19 pandemic

At dissolution, the NDP and Liberals were tied with 41 seats in the legislature, while the Greens held two seats

An artists rendering of the proposed Aragon Properties development in Sooke’s town centre shows a friendly, walkable neighbourhood. (Contributed graphic)
Large housing development eyed for Sooke core

Aragon Properties seeks to build 132 housing units

The Capital Regional District spent $1.7 million to restore the Todd Creek Trestle. (Sooke News Mirror)
Todd Creek Trestle restoration completed

Restoration work adds 35 to 50 years to life span of former rail span near Sooke

Bill Kelly, general manager at Crown Isle Resort & Golf Community, has been named executive professional of the year by the PGA of BC. Scott Stanfield photo
Courtenay golf course, general manager earn PGA of BC awards

Crown Isle’s manager, facility honoured by the industry

Dinner shows in the Playbill Dining Room are keeping the Chemainus Theatre going during the pandemic. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Dinner events satisfying for the Chemainus Theatre and patrons

Small groups enjoy entertainment and the food in the Playbill Dining Room

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Most Read