October 14, 2005
New Drive-Thru Light Park and Seasonal Events Bring
'Holiday Magic' to Central Missouriís Lake of the Ozarks
LAKE OF THE OZARKS, MO. -- A dazzling drive-through light park plus traditional seasonal activities and events will create "Holiday Magic" next month at Central Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks.
"Holiday Magic -- the drive-through park and all the holiday activities around the Lake -- is an effort to bring more people to the Lake during November and December," says Mark Bowman, Holiday Magic co-chair and general manager of The Resort at Port Arrowhead. "Combined with our great shopping, lodging packages and dining, it makes the Lake a complete holiday destination."
Brand-new in 2005, the Holiday Magic drive-through park will feature two miles of lighted and animated displays and light tunnels -- 86 in all -- that will brighten the night for Lake-area residents and visitors from Nov. 10 through Jan. 1. The park will be located just below Bagnell Dam. Lighted displays will range from Santa and snowmen to Rudolph and elves … from penguins and presents to Christmas trees and teddy bears, and much more.
"We wanted to do something big for the holidays, something with real 'WOW!' that also was in keeping with our theme of lights around the Lake," says Holiday Magic co-chair Karen Medders, general manager of Lake Ozark Vacations, a
PMG Company. "The new drive-through park will be very impressive and each year we'll add to it."
Adds Bowman, "With more than 80 displays, Holiday Magic is sure to be one of the premier drive-through holiday parks in the Midwest. It's a truly amazing, one-of-a-kind attraction." The new light park is being supported by
businesses, chambers of commerce, organizations and individuals throughout the Lake area.
Admission for the two-mile drive will be $10 per car and $2 per person on tour buses. Several Lake-area businesses plan to offer discount coupons to the park, and some resorts and hotels will include park tickets in specially priced holiday-season packages.
Holiday Magic, however, is more than one attraction. It's the "umbrella" theme for all the Lake's ongoing, family-oriented holiday festivities. The fun officially will begin with the 16th annual Lake Lights Festival on Saturday, Nov. 19. That's when Santa will arrive by boat and lead the Holiday Caravan along Highway 54 through Osage Beach and Lake Ozark to just below Bagnell Dam where visitors can enjoy a bonfire, caroling, a patriotic salute and fireworks, plus the Holiday Magic park. The lights will glow through Sunday, Jan. 1.
Other magical moments will include traditional Lake-area events like the 12th annual Enchanted Village of Lights, a sparkling, mile-long drive-through display inside Laurie's 27-acre Hillbilly Fairgrounds. Starting Thursday, Nov. 24, the village will feature lighted and animated Christmas scenes and decorated trees. Admission is free. In addition, the charming Festival of Trees, Nov. 29 through Dec. 17 at the Camden County Museum in Linn Creek, will
provide "Holiday Magic" of its own with decorated trees and wreaths donated by area organizations and individuals for silent auction.
The magic will continue with "Christmas on Main Street," the Main Street Music Hall's always-anticipated Christmas show. The production will run from Nov. 26 through Dec. 19 with show times at 8:00 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday
and 3:00 p.m. Sunday.
Also as part of "Holiday Magic," on Thanksgiving Night, Nov. 24, the Lake area's two largest resorts will kick off their annual holiday festivities. Tan-Tar-A Resort's Winter Holiday Lights Festival Celebration and Santa's Arrival will feature lighted displays and trees along the resort's winding entryway. The Lodge of Four Seasons' holiday fun will include a perennial favorite -- the annual Gingerbread Village Competition & Exhibit, in which visitors vote on their favorite staff-created gingerbread houses. The display will be open from 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily. Admission will be free although donations will be appreciated and forwarded to Hope House.
Other seasonal activities will include concerts by the Lake Area Orchestra and Greater Lake Area Chorale, crafts shows, parades, theatrical performances and more.
Outstanding holiday shopping lures visitors too. From the 110-store Osage Beach Premium Outlets (Missouri's largest name-brand outlet mall) to local shopping centers, art galleries, antique stores, craft shops and specialty boutiques, the Lake's shopping opportunities make it easy to wrap up that Christmas gift list.
For more information about the Holiday Magic drive-thru light park -- including a sneak peek at some of the displays -- plus up-to-date listings of all the Lake's holiday festivities and activities, visit www.lakeholidaymagic.com. And for more details about shopping, lodging, dining and year-round fun at Central Missouri's scenic Lake of the Ozarks, call the Lake of the Ozarks Convention & Visitor Bureau at 800-FUN-LAKE or check the bureau's website at www.funlake.com.
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