Zoo Lights bring beauty to Navarre Beach

Christmas lights are just pretty. Every year right about the time they go up the world becomes a little warmer in the heart and a little brighter in the spirit regardless of which holiday(s) you celebrate.

So, combine the wonder of Christmas lights with the fun of the Gulf Breeze Zoo, located minutes from Navarre Beach, and you have a recipe for a great evening.

Come check out Zoo Lights, the annual event where Navarre Beach’s area zoo transforms into a twinkling jungle of lights.

Walking through the event this year I was greeted by the reflection of a rainbow of glowing palm trees in the waters of the zoo’s monkey island pond. Neon howler monkeys swept their way over your head as kangaroos hopped by in an animated light display.

Making my way toward the petting zoo, I am greeted by a “snow” machine blowing waves of bubbles over a gaggle of giggling children. The scene is surrounded by larger-than-life toys and treasures created out of hundreds of bulbs.

The petting zoo offers children a chance to pet and hand feed critters while illuminated flamingos gaze on. Rounding a corner a blue lit tree glows with cascading, shimmering icicles in front of a forest of Christmas trees.

An otter chirps for gathered guests as a lighted Santa Claus flies by. Also in “flight” are models of our local Blue Angels performance jets.

In the pavilion I hear a local A Capella group performing Christmas classics for a gathering of starry eyed children and smiling parents.

I could go on about the view from the train and the acres of beautiful displays, but I think you should come see it for yourself. It’s on display now through Dec. 30 and will return again next Christmas.