For the fifth year, St. Matthew Lutheran Church has been sharing its free display of 100,000 festive Christmas lights synchronized to holiday music.
The holiday lights festival is not only to be enjoyed outside. On weekends, visitors are encouraged to visit inside for light refreshments and viewing of the spectacular indoor train garden.
New additions to the festival this year include three 20-foot tall mega trees in front of the community garden area as well as 16 reindeer prancing throughout the campus.
The outdoor light display runs nightly, starting at 6 p.m. through the end of the year. On Friday through Sunday evenings, from 6 to 9 p.m., guests may visit the train garden and enjoy hot cocoa and cookies inside the church by entering through the tunnel of lights. The expanded, indoor train garden display features six trains on 265 feet of track.
St. Matthew's Festival of Lights is well-known throughout the community. It was designed by Bel Air resident Jim Kurtz, working with St. Matthew Pastor Blaise Sedney.
A team of volunteers put in more than 500 hours to set up this year's display of 10,000 LED lights in various locations on the church's outside campus. The lights are synchronized to holiday music that visitors can enjoy from inside their cars by tuning to a specific radio frequency.
The display is on the side of the St. Matthew campus facing away from Churchville Road (Route 22). Visitors to the festival should use the main entrance on Churchville Road at the intersection of Brierhill Drive across from the Walgreens pharmacy. St. Matthew greeters will be accepting food or cash donations to benefit their food pantry which serves many in need all year throughout the County.
Visitors are encouraged to visit the church's webpage, www.smlc.org, or the official Facebook page for St. Matthew for schedule changes as well as special worship services and concert dates scheduled at the church during the holiday season.