Light Up Louisville and ‘40 Nights of Lights’ return

Expanded event returns with more lights, trees and activities

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Nov. 14, 2013) — The city’s Light Up Louisville event – the traditional starting point for the holidays – returns for its 33rd year along with “40 Nights of Lights” a nightly array of lights and activities along four blocks of 4th Street, from the Galt House to Fourth Street Live.
Light Up Louisville begins the day after Thanksgiving (Friday, Nov. 29), with the arrival of Santa Claus who will help illuminate downtown Louisville, followed by fireworks – all centered at a main stage located at 4th and Main.

Louisville’s 40 Nights of Lights includes a nightly show from Main Street to the Fourth Street Live corridor.
Louisville’s 40 Nights of Lights includes a nightly show from Main Street to the Fourth Street Live corridor.

“Louisville is a city known around the world for our festivals and events and we are always working to make them the best they can be,” Mayor Greg Fischer said. “By continuing to grow and improve Light Up Louisville and 40 Nights of Lights, we’re keeping alive the tradition that families have enjoyed for decades and adding new lights, excitement and activity to bring more citizens and visitors downtown to celebrate the season.”

Many new features have been added to the nightly 40 Nights of Lights. The four blocks of 4th St. from Main to Chestnut will be truly electrifying with over 1,100 strands of red/green and blue LED lights that will animate 250 snow flake and fleur de lis fixtures. Over-the-street LED archways will feature lights set to music, along with nearly 40 animated LED light-pole banners.

Another feature will be a nightly light show synchronized to music in the Aegon Plaza at 4th and Jefferson. The 12-minute production will be presented hourly from 7 to 10 p.m. each night, and until 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through New Years Eve.

Also new this year: there will be two brightly lit and decorated community Christmas trees – one at the main stage at 4th and Main and a second near 4th and Liberty. Both trees were donated by Louisville families.

A popular attraction added last year, an ice skating rink in the heart of Fourth Street Live!, will return. The rink uses a synthetic ice that ensures its availability even if outdoor temperatures go above freezing. The fee for skating is $5 an hour for adults, $3 for children under 13. Daily rates are $10, and a season pass is $40, $30 for children. Skates will be available to rent for $2.

Light Up Louisville is presented by Christmas at the Galt House Hotel, Fifth Third Bank, LG&E and Louisville: It’s Possible Here.

Light Up Louisville has been the flagship event of the Derby City winter season for 32 years.
Light Up Louisville has been the flagship event of the Derby City winter season for 33 years.

“Christmas at the Galt House Hotel is proud to be a sponsor for Light Up Louisville and 40 Nights of Lights,” said Mary Moseley, CEO and president of Christmas at the Galt House Hotel and The Al J Schneider Company. “It’s so exciting to have an event to bring everyone downtown for the holidays and have the city alive with families and visitors.”

“This is the one time of the year when people of all faiths come together with love and compassion to celebrate their beliefs,” said Tom Partridge, president and CEO of Fifth Third Bank (Kentucky). “Fifth Third is proud to sponsor Light Up Louisville.”

“Light Up Louisville is a community tradition in which children of all ages come together to ring in the season. We are pleased to continue our support and to help our community ‘shine brightly’ during the holidays and all year long,” said Victor A. Staffieri, chairman, CEO and president of LG&E and KU.

“40 Nights of Lights will enhance the city’s holiday offerings making downtown Louisville more enticing as a regional destination this season,” said Jim Wood, president and CEO of the Louisville Convention & Visitor’s Bureau. “Families can plan a visit around the arts, museums and hotels that feature holiday events and enjoy the nightly light displays as part of additional entertainment.”

Light Up Louisville activities on Nov. 29 begin at 2 p.m. with the Run, Run Rudolph 5K race, the fourth event of the city’s KentuckyOne Health Four De Lis running series, which starts on 4th near Main. The fee is $35 and participants will receive a long sleeve T-shirt.

The annual Light Up Louisville Parade begins at 6:30 p.m. Parade units will be decorated in festive lights and will include bands, carolers, car clubs, floats, children’s groups and civic organizations. The parade route runs along 4th Street from Liberty to Main Street.

Santa Claus is expected to arrive at 8 p.m., joining the mayor to insert the magic plug and turn on thousands of lights on buildings and trees of all sizes including the Light Up Louisville Christmas Tree near the main stage at 4th and Main and the second tree near 4th and Liberty.

Families will have an opportunity to sign a large community card for military men and women serving overseas. The card will be available at the Kentucky International Convention Center the evening of Light Up Louisville and at Fifth Third Bank at 4th and Liberty throughout the 40 Nights of Lights.

After the lights and fireworks, children can have their photos taken with Santa at the Kentucky International Convention Center.

Toys for Tots
Members of the U.S. Marine Corps will again be stationed at Light Up Louisville to accept donations of unwrapped new toys for Toys for Tots. The Marines will be collecting in the Santa’s Workshop in the 4th Street lobby of the Kentucky International Convention Center.

UofL Basketball Game at KFC Yum Center
Fans attending the UofL/Southern Mississippi basketball game are encouraged to come early and enjoy Light Up Louisville before and after the 7 p.m. tip-off. Fans should plan ahead for parking and traffic due to the extra number of people downtown for both large events.

Sing’N’Joy International Choral Festival and Competition
New this year, the Galt House is hosting choirs from all over the world, Nov. 28 through Dec. 1 including performances the evening of Light Up Louisville. It’s part of the 47-day Christmas at the Galt House Hotel event.

Spirit of Jefferson Cruises
The Spirit of Jefferson is offering two “Light Up Louisville” cruises on Nov. 29. A pre-Light Up cruise will board at 4 p.m. and cruise from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. for $10 per person. After the lights and fireworks, the Light Up cruise will board at 9 p.m. and cruise from 9:30 to 11:30 p.m. for $15 per person. Visit for information or to book tickets.

Holiday trees at Metro Hall
Louisville Metro Hall will again be decorated and lighted for the holidays outside and inside. Beginning Dec. 2, Metro Hall will feature a colorful display of trees decorated by children from the 12 Metro Parks Community Centers and nearby neighborhoods, weekdays 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

In addition to presenting sponsors Christmas at the Galt House Hotel, Fifth Third Bank, LG&E and Louisville: It’s Possible Here, additional support is provided by Axxis, BB&T, Budweiser, George Fern Exposition & Event Services, Fourth Street Live!, Humana CareSource, Hyatt Regency, KentuckyOne Health, Kentucky International Convention Center, Louisville Downtown Partnership, Ramiro’s Cantina and UAW 862. Media sponsors include Lite 106.9, MetroTV, WDRB-TV and What’s Happening in Greater Louisville. Special thanks to Abco Bramer, Bob Ray Tree Co., Café Press, CBS Outdoor, Eddingfield Family, Event Co., Hines Management, Kroger, Visual Presentations, Walmart and the Wessel Family.

For more information about Light Up Louisville including registration for the Run Run Rudolph 5K, call MetroCall 311 or visit

Light Up Louisville – Friday, Nov. 29, 2 to 10 p.m.

40 Nights of Lights continues nightly through New Year’s Eve

10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Christmas at the Galt House

12:30 p.m. Run, Run Rudolph 5K registration and packet pick up

2 p.m. Light Up Louisville opens (stage music, vendor market, pubs)

2 to 3 p.m. Run, Run Rudolph 5K run and walk

3 to 7 p.m. Santa’s Workshop Children’s area

4 p.m. Main Stage entertainment begins

6:30 to 8 p.m. Light Up Louisville Parade

8 p.m. Santa’s arrival – 4th St. from Liberty to Main Stage

8:15 p.m. LIGHT UP! (stage entertainment, vendor market & pubs continue)

9 p.m. First nightly light show at Aegon Plaza, 4th & Jefferson

10 p.m. 4th Street Live! After Party; outdoor Light Up event ends


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