Completely beat my expectations.
A couple of months ago, I saw an advertisement for a Chinese lantern display coming to our zoo. In my head, I imagined a cheesed-out Asian-inspired party on weekends, full of decently constructed paper lanterns and regionally inspired fancy drinks. After repeatedly passing a billboard for it, I finally looked into the event and my interest was piqued. Not being a fan of shelling out major dough for lackluster events, I was skeptical about it being worth the price. In the end, I decided to go with the “You won’t know unless you try it” motto. Turns out the motto is still a good one, because this event was nothing less than stunning.
My eyes were dazzled from the moment I reached the park entrance. The entryway, which is typically just wood, plants and signage, was lit to the nines and resembled a traditional Chinese building facade. Not only was it visually impressive, so was the construction. Again, my brain jumped to conclusions and I figured these structures would be cheaply made and haphazardly assembled. Yes, I did the nerdy thing and examined portions to see how it was made. Seeing that the light was shining through colored fabric (not plastic), which was set inside of ornate wooden cutouts (again, not plastic), I was feeling pretty optimistic about the event being worth the visit and the cost.
Hands down, this beat any light display I’ve seen…and I love hitting up light displays, especially during the holidays. It was more than just colored lights, it was art, a bit of history and a ton of fun. There were lanterns made of fabric, some made of tiny glass jars filled with colored liquid, even one comprised of multiple towers, all constructed out of porcelain flatware…PORCELAIN FLATWARE!!! Once we made it through the zoo gate, that particular lantern took center stage and rightfully so. It was gorgeous! Around every turn and down every walkway, there was something equally as beautiful and interesting as what we had already seen. This event was definitely a feast for my eyes.