Winter Fest OC, the popular holiday-themed event that takes place each year at the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa, will be reimagined for 2020 as the Night of Lights OC drive-thru experience.

The event will feature a mile-long drive-thru course of immersive light tunnels and displays with over one million lights that are synchronized to music that will be played through the car radio or smartphone. There will be plenty of themed holiday scenery, special effects, a Christmas tree lighting and more.

Night of Lights OC kicks off on Thursday, Dec. 3 and runs nightly through Sunday, Jan. 3 (excluding Christmas Eve on Dec. 24). Entrance begins at 5 p.m. with various sessions available to space out guests until 10 p.m. every Sunday-Thursday and until 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Santa Claus will also make appearances at the event through Dec. 23.

Tickets start at $49.99 Monday-Tuesday; $59.99 Wednesday, Thursday and Sundays; $69.99 Friday-Saturday. Tickets are sold per vehicle with no more than five guests. There is a separate large vehicle ticket for those with 6-9 total guests per vehicle. All tickets must be purchased in advance at

Vehicle height is limited to eight feet or less due to the tunnels. Pricing will increase after early bird tickets are sold out.

All guests must remain in their vehicles for the duration of the event and face masks are required for everyone in the vehicle if guests choose to roll down their windows for the experience. The speed limit through the attraction is 3 mph and there will be plenty of attendants along the route to guide and monitor vehicles.

There are restrooms on-site as well as merchandise and concessions, including hot cocoa, that will be available during the scheduled sessions at the rest stop area prior to entering the event. Merchandise and food can be added to your total ticket price upon checkout and will be ready for pick-up during the scheduled session time. No food or merch will be sold onsite.

Night of Lights OC also includes themed nights with community heroes discounts. Every Monday it’s offering a $5 discount for teachers, military personnel, law enforcement, medical workers and firefighters with appropriate identification for on-site verification. Dec. 7 is a Salute to Teachers (use code TEACH at checkout); Dec. 14 is Salute to Military and Law Enforcement (use code SERVICE); Dec. 21 is Salute to Medical Workers (use code FIRSTAID); and Dec. 28 is a Salute to Firefighters (use code FIRE).


By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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