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Hannah Jones

Holiday Road: A half-mile holiday extravaganza with lights, music, cheer

Visitors walk through a glittering light tunnel. (Photo courtesy of Holiday Road Atlanta)

By Hannah E. Jones

After winding down a long, dark road nestled outside the city, the all-encompassing trees open up to a vast landscape filled with dazzling gold, blue, red and green lights.

Leave your real-world worries at the door and let Holiday Road transport you into a world reminiscent of holiday films.

Co-founders Bobby Rossi and Ben Biscotti debuted Holiday Road in Los Angeles last year and expanded to Atlanta and Virginia this winter. Rossi describes the colorful display as an “immersive holiday experience” with “Instagrammable moments.”

A young visitor nestled into Santa’s bag of gifts. (Photo by John Glenn for Holiday Road Atlanta)

The entrance is flanked with larger-than-life nutcrackers, leading to a dazzling Christmas tree surrounded by candy canes and cutouts that turn your friends into elves or your kid into a jolly caroler. 

Once stepping foot onto Holiday Road, visitors then dive into a miniature Winter Wonderland, featuring tiny shops with punny names like “Bank of Bah Humbug” and “Rudolph’s Runaway Flight School.”

Each individual holiday tableau is part of a larger cohesive scene; they’re all interwoven into an enormous explosion of lights, music and cheer. 

Walking further down the half-mile trail, folks will step from Christmas to Hanukkah to Kwanzaa — with displays ranging from the Nativity Scene to oversized menorahs and dreidels and a basket of harvests and a kinara.

“We try to hit the most festive themes, like Mr. and Mrs. Claus and the North Pole,” Rossi said. “Lights are a big part of holiday tradition everywhere, so we wanted to incorporate that. We also wanted to celebrate all religions and creeds.” 

Frosty takes the conductor’s seat to lead the Holiday Road Express train. (Photo by John Glenn for Holiday Road Atlanta.)

While some of the 20-plus installations highlight end-of-year traditions, others are an ode to beloved pop-cultural mainstays like Frosty the Snowman and the Grinch. 

“There’s some cozy and winter fun,” Rossi added. “With the Arctic Polar Land, we have our polar bears and penguins, and the Gingerbread Lane is a festive one.”

Atlanta’s holiday display is located at Fulton County’s HorseMansion at Bouckaert Farm, an equestrian haven by day, offering a secluded atmosphere and ample space to enjoy the show.

The HorseMansion itself is the backdrop for one of the last scenes of Holiday Road, a life-sized Mr. and Mrs. Claus surrounded by presents, hydrangeas and glistening snow as they overlook the twinkling scene.

The HorseMansion at Bouckaert Farm is the majestic backdrop for Holiday Road Atlanta. (Photo courtesy Holiday Road Atlanta.)

“We understood the grandeur of the HorseMansion and, in this iteration of it, it’s essentially Santa’s house,” Rossi said. “The North Pole in [Atlanta] is spectacular. The centerpiece where you see Mr. and Mrs. Claus with the nutcrackers and the Mansion as the backdrop is a real iconic and breathtaking scene.”

“We hope [visitors] feel enjoyment and excitement, and [we want] to help them further encapsulate the holiday cheer of this time of year,” he added.

Atlanta’s Holiday Road will run until Sunday, Jan. 2, so if you’re in the market for a little extra holiday cheer — and after nearly two years in a pandemic, aren’t we all? — head over to Bouckaert Farms to see the world of lights. 

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Hannah E. Jones

Hannah Jones is an Atlanta native who recently graduated from Georgia State University, with a major in journalism and minor in public policy. She began studying journalism in high school and has since served as a reporter and editor for two newspapers. Hannah managed the Arts and Living section of The Signal, Georgia State’s independent award-winning newspaper. She has a passion for environmental issues, urban life and telling a good story. Hannah is excited about the opportunity to serve the City of Atlanta and its people. Hannah can be reached at hannah@atlantaciviccircle.org.

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