There’s probably not a modern-day Christmas tradition that can match bundling up in warm clothes, jumping in the car, and burning up some fossil fuel to take in the spectacle of holiday lights that brighten what would otherwise be a dreary winter night sky.
And if you want a light experience that is a tad different, there’s no better place that Holidays on the Farm — the three-week long celebration of the season that runs through Jan. 2 at Dell’Osso Family Farm in Lathrop off of Interstate 5 on Manthey Road just north of the San Joaquin River.
Holidays on the Farm offers two options to see more than 300 displays that includes a 200-foot long light tunnel made out of Christmas lights. You can drive the route for $10 per car, (vans, limos, and mini buses are $20) or go on an open air hayride tram (be sure and bring a blanket) for $6 per person. Dell’Osso Farms bills its light display as the largest of its kind in Northern California.
But what really makes it different is what you can do afterwards — or before.
There is a country store featuring local treats such as homemade pies and fudge as well as craft items. The store is also where you can find Santa.
Then there are diversions such as snow tubing, ice skating and the zip line. You can also select from freshly cut Christmas trees.
The snow tube hill is $20 for 90-minute sessions. You can squeeze in a lot of trips downhill thanks to the “people mover” that gets you and your tube back up to the top for the next run. Reserving and buying a spot online at holidaysonthefarm.com is strongly recommended due to the popularity of the snow tubing attraction. If a session hasn’t been sold out you can buy tickets on site.
Ice skating is on a first-come, first served basis. The cost for Monday through Thursday sessions is $12 for 8 years and older with skates and $10 for 7 and under with skates. Friday through Sunday is $14 for those 8 and older and $12 for those 7 and under. It is $2 less at any time you skate if you use your own skates.
Holidays on the Farm is closed on Christmas and has reduced hours on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. More information is on the website at www.holidaysonthefarm.com