Gardens Aglow: See the Gardens in a whole new light

Posted:  Thursday, November 9, 2017 - 9:30am

For the third year running, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens is welcoming visitors back to its annual seasonal celebration, Gardens Aglow. This year, CMBG is taking its dramatic display to new heights. More than 500,000 LED lights will transform our central gardens from garden paradise to winter wonderland, making the largest light display in Maine not only bigger, but brighter. As last year’s 75,000 visitors can attest, there is something for everyone to experience during an enchanting evening of Gardens Aglow.

In fact, ticket sales began in August, and social media has been buzzing ever since with people begging their friends to join them in Boothbay for Gardens Aglow and the Boothbay Festival of Lights.

Gardens Aglow runs Nov. 17 through Dec. 31, Thursdays through Sundays from 4 to 9 p.m. (closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Eve). Though tickets are available on-site, to save money and help regulate traffic flow, visitors to Gardens Aglow are encouraged to purchase their tickets online. Tickets are timed for three separate arrivals each night: 4, 6, and 7:30 p.m. Discounts are available for CMBG members and groups of 10 or more. See for all pricing options.

Beginning at 4 p.m., complimentary shuttles will run continuously from the fire station in Boothbay Harbor to Gardens Aglow, providing both stress-free parking and an easy way to spend the day in the Harbor before catching a ride to Gardens Aglow.

To show our appreciation to the Boothbay peninsula, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens has planned a special Community Night at Gardens Aglow on Wednesday, Dec. 6. Community Night is a special complimentary showing for Boothbay peninsula residents only — a fun way to kick off the season in the company of friends. This year, ticket pick-up for this special event has been simplified. If you are a resident of Boothbay, Boothbay Harbor, Southport or Edgecomb, simply visit your town office and pick up two tickets for your household. Tickets are redeemable on Dec. 6 only and are not available at the Gardens. Community Night tickets will be timed with entry at 4 p.m., 6 p.m., or 7:30 p.m. Admission is free, but tickets are required. Children under the age of 17 accompanied by an adult will be admitted without a ticket.

Once again, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens is excited to invite community members to take part in our annual Gardens Aglow holiday lighting contest. If your home or business is located on the Boothbay peninsula, and your property is visible from a public roadway, you are eligible to win. This year we have six prizes and two categories — business and residential. Entering the contest is free and easy. To participate, complete the registration form at and either send it in via email, or print and mail it to the Gardens. Emails and letters must be received by Nov. 27, 2017 to be eligible for judging. Employees and family members of Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens are not eligible to enter.

Your display must be completely installed and lit nightly between the hours of 4 and 9 p.m., beginning no later than Dec. 1, 2017 and continuing through the evening of Dec. 31, 2017. Displays will be evaluated by a panel of judges from the community.

Winners will be announced during Community Night at Gardens Aglow on Wednesday, Dec. 6. Prizes are as follows: first place in both categories will receive $1,500 plus 15 tickets to Gardens Aglow, 2017. Second place will receive $1,000 plus ten tickets, and third place will receive $500 plus five tickets.

The mission of Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens is to inspire meaningful connections among people, plants and nature through horticulture, education and research. Visit Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens online,