2017 Holiday Kickoff

Cooler temperatures in Charlotte and Christmas lights at Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens kicked off this year’s holiday celebration. We started the weekend camping and cooking over a campfire Thursday night.

Then Friday morning started with a hike before going to the gardens only a short distance from McDowell Nature Preserve where we were camping. Our afternoon visit started in the Orchid House before walking throughout the park.

Much of the space incorporated holiday displays among the plants. Orchids decorated trees instead of the usual poinsettias.

When the Gardens closed to prepare for the evening event we prepared and ate dinner in the RV before returning after dark for the holiday lights.

Lights and music covered the grounds.

To be honest, we didn’t drive to Charlotte simply to camp and go to a light display. We were in the city to attend the ACC Championship Game. Unfortunately, there was some confusion when the Canes heard meteorologists in Florida celebrating the end of the 2017 hurricane season. It seems the team thought that meant the football season was over. Coach Richt will need to work on that before the team’s next game in the Orange Bowl.

Getting in the Holiday Spirit

When I looked at my phone, and it shouted today’s date as December 1st, I thought back to how we started December a year ago. We flew to Washington, D.C. on the final day of November to attend the lighting of the National Christmas Tree after being selected in a lottery for the annual event sponsored by the National Park Service.

Upon arrival in D.C., we toured the National Cathedral before heading to the zoo for Zoolights, a chance to wander the grounds decorated for the holiday.

Of course my favorite decoration was the well light Uncle Beasley, the triceratops and main character from The Enormous Egg, a book we read as a family on our first trip to D.C. and New England over twenty years earlier.

Then on the 1st, we crowded in the viewing area at the Eclipse for the lighting of the tree by President Obama and Christmas music by artists Chance the Rapper, James Taylor and others.

Tonight we’re attending another Christmas event away from home. This time at Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens in Charlotte, NC. A little cool air and a light display is a good way to get in the holiday spirit.

I’d love to hear how you get in the holiday spirit. If you’d like to comment on this post, please do so on the blog. While you may see this on Facebook, I haven’t signed in to my Facebook account for well over a year and will not see comments left on Facebook.