For Nearly a Decade Holiday Lights in the Park has been a Shining Light for Residents and Law Enforcement in St. Paul

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Plans are set for the 2016 edition of St. Paul’s best and largest nightly holiday celebration

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Holiday Lights makes our city brighter, both literally and figuratively.

The Saint Paul Police Foundation announced today that Holiday Lights in the Park, the Midwest’s largest outdoor holiday light display will illuminate St. Paul’s Phalen Park for the ninth straight year. The lighted displays will shine brightly each evening from Tuesday, November 22 until January 1, 2017.

For 41 evenings Phalen Park will be lit up with a wide variety of holiday-themed displays. Visitors tour the displays in the warm confines of their vehicle, making weather a non-factor. In each of the previous year’s more than 20,000 cars have visited Holiday Lights in the Park, making it the area’s largest nightly holiday celebration.

For new St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell Holiday Lights in the Park is a wonderful way for his department to reach out to the community.

“An event with the track record of Holiday Lights is asset to our city,” said Axtell. “I am excited to see our officers from throughout our department interacting with visitors and residents alike. This event not only puts people in the holiday spirit, it also brings us all closer together.”

Uniformed St. Paul Police Officers will be at the entrance to Holiday Lights greeting guests and thanking them for their support. In turn the officers hope that these few moments of holiday cheer and gratitude will help to strengthen the bond that is crucial to protecting and serving a city as diverse as St. Paul. Organizers hope that the opportunity for families, and especially children, to meet officers face-to-face will create new dialogues and cultivate higher levels of trust and cooperation.

The Saint Paul Police Foundation uses the proceeds from Holiday Lights to make the St. Paul area safer for citizens and law enforcement officials.

“Holiday Lights has been a great resources not only for community outreach but to give additional support to our men and women in blue who protect and serve our city,” said Donna Swanson, Executive Director of the Saint Paul Police Foundation. “For almost a decade this event has evolved into a community celebration that gives our officers the additional resources not included in the police budget.”

Through Holiday Lights the Saint Paul Police Foundation raises funds to make the St. Paul area safer for citizens and law enforcement officials. Funds support community engagement efforts, safety equipment and department outreach. In the past eight years, Holiday Lights has raised nearly $420,000 for a variety of St. Paul and East Metro nonprofits. Since its inception in 2005, the Foundation has raised nearly $5 million to help support numerous SPPD initiatives including providing lifesaving equipment, Shop with Cops, Police Activity Leagues, Cops and Kids program and community ambassadors.

“Holiday Lights makes our city brighter, both literally and figuratively,” said Axtell. “I want to personally welcome all of our visitors who show their support each holiday season. We are so very grateful for their support and that of the Saint Paul Police Foundation.”

2016 Holiday Lights in the Park at a glance:

What: More than 60 holiday-themed light displays located on a driving path 

When: From 5:00 to 10 p.m. nightly from November 22th to January 1st, 2017.

Where: Phalen Park, 1615 Phalen Drive East, in St. Paul

Who: Saint Paul Police Foundation, along with volunteers from St. Paul Police Department.

Cost: Tickets $10 dollars per vehicle nightly – and available online or at the park’s main gate. Discounted tickets can also be purchased in advanced by visiting

About Holiday Lights:

Holiday Lights in the Park is a venture the Saint Paul Police Foundation with the sole purpose of creating a fun and affordable holiday event that raises funds to help protect the men and women who protect the residents of St. Paul. All of the net proceeds of the event will be distributed through the Saint Paul Police foundation to the St. Paul Police Department to provide enhanced safety and training to officers Holiday Lights in the Park is open nightly from November 22 to January 1, 2017 at St. Paul’s Phalen Park. To purchase tickets you can visit our website:, or for more information you can find us on Facebook: or follow us on Twitter:


Donna Swanson, executive director Holiday Lights in the Park
651.291.2820 donna.swanson(at)saintpaulpolicefoundation(dot)com

Robb Leer, media liaison Holiday Lights in the Park
612.701.0608 Robbl(at)leercommunication(dot)com


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Robb Leer