December 8, 2011

A Holiday Tradition at Water Works Park

Jolly Holiday Lights exists today because of a group of volunteers came up with the idea of a charitable holiday event 16 years ago. Today, the event has become Iowa’s largest light display and a holiday tradition for so many families.

Jolly Holiday Lights is Make-a-Wish Foundation of Iowa’s biggest fundraiser, with 100% of the money going directly towards granting wishes of Iowa children between the ages of 2 ½ and 18 diagnosed with life-threatening medical conditions.

On average, it costs approximately $8,900 to grant one wish, which takes about 900 vehicles driving through Jolly Holiday Lights. Each year, we strive to raise $300,000, enough to grant approximately 35 wishes throughout the state of Iowa.


  • Cars:       $10 ($5 Monday for Hy-Vee Value Nights!)
  • Limos:   $20
  • Buses:    $45

Santa’s Wish Shop – complete with snacks, Santa and gifts – is open 5:30-9:00 Sunday through Thursday and 5:30-10:00 Friday and Saturday. Santa’s Wish Shop will close December 23, to allow Santa time to deliver his gifts!

For more information, visit

Posted by: Laura Sarcone 2 Comments
Labels: , , , , , Posted in Parks

2 Responses to “A Holiday Tradition at Water Works Park”

  1. January 18, 2012 at 8:45 am, Year in Review | Des Moines Water Works said:

    […] Hosted several events at Water Works Park, including HyVee Fishing Derby, Big Country Bash, weddings, charity walks, Des Moines Marathon and Jolly Holiday Lights […]


  2. December 23, 2013 at 4:30 pm, Delyce Knuth said:

    What is the address for the light display?


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