One of the Triangle’s biggest holiday events set to return. Here’s how to buy tickets

Ethan Hyman/

What started as a pandemic precaution has become a Triangle holiday staple as WRAL’s Nights of Lights is returning to Dorothea Dix Park for the third consecutive year.

“Every year this event gets bigger, better and more exciting,” said Joel Davis, vice president and general manager of WRAL/FOX 50, in a news release.

Tickets go on sale Friday at 9 a.m.

The drive-thru holiday display takes guests through 1.3 miles of lights, with this year’s event featuring a 25-foot gingerbread house, a 30-foot dinosaur and a 250-foot animated tunnel.

“This year attendees will see a huge addition of lights and options for in-person experiences,” Davis said.

The display will be open nightly from Nov. 25 through Dec. 24.

Last year, more than 125,000 people attended Nights of Lights, allowing for organizers to donate $100,000 to the Dix Park Conservancy. The event also brought in an additional $19,000 in donations for the Inter-faith Food Shuttle.

This year, attendees will have the chance to contribute to three local non-profits: Inter-faith Food Shuttle, WRAL’s Coats for the Children and Healing Transitions.

WRAL will also be hosting two nights where bikers will be allowed to wind through the light show on Nov. 30 and Dec. 7 as well as various theme nights.

Also new this year is the “Igloo Experience,” where people can reserve 45 minutes in a lit-up igloo with food and drinks before touring the lights.

Early bird pricing will be available through Nov. 1. For details, go to