Cheers! Wild Lights 2023 - Enchanting Extras

Merriment and More

Enjoy these festive extras — and don’t forget to share your photos on Instagram using #WildLightsMKEZoo.


  • New this year! A 28-foot Pixel Pine Tree on display in the front entrance mall! This special Pixel Pine is a very merry musical tree adorned with Wild Lights animals.
  • At Nourish 414, warm up at the fire pits, play some outdoor games, and get creative at the new giant light wall — our colossal 12-foot LiteZilla! It’s not an ordinary canvas, but rather, a massive, glowing masterpiece just waiting for your creative spark. Grab a handful of colorful acrylic LitePins and let your imagination run wild to create pictures, patterns, and designs (maybe even a favorite Zoo animal!) on the enormous backlit panel. LiteZilla will rekindle the joy of bringing ideas to life — in vibrant, glowing color!
  • Meet Jolly ‘ole St. Nick himself (and Mrs. Claus!) inside the Conservation Outpost and receive a FREE group photo and gift when Santa visits Cheers!
  • Get into the spirit with live music by Clarissa, a sassy British soul singer and pianist playing holiday tunes in the U.S. Bank Gathering Place.
  • Beer tasting and tunes are on the menu at the Peck Welcome Center! Join Howl2Go as they play your favorite hit songs in an engaging dueling piano show! Flights of beer and snacks will be available for purchase.
  • Gather ‘round near the Conservation Outpost for an outdoor screening of the holiday classic, Home Alone.
  • Nearby, stop at the Ice Zone to play ice games and check out live ice carving demonstrations.
  • The Aquatic & Reptile Center will be open and welcoming guests from 5:30 p.m. to 9:15 p.m. Come and see the huge population of fish, reptiles, invertebrates, and amphibians. Also check out a hawksbill turtle shell and snakeskin sheds from a few of the residents!
  • Festive food and drinks are available for purchase throughout Zoo grounds.
  • North Shore Bank Safari Train (weather-dependent) – Enjoy a crisp, winter woodland ride.
  • Penzeys Carousel (weather-dependent) – Ride atop your favorite animal on this old-fashioned fan favorite.
  • Sky Safari (weather-dependent) – Experience Wild Lights from above!
  • Wild Lights for Wildlife: Drop off working and non-working lights for recycling to help wildlife! Recycling lights keeps them out of landfills — less space for landfills means more space for wildlife! Proceeds support Wisconsin’s Endangered Resources Fund.


For faster entry: Members and pre-ticketed guests, park at West End (enter at 106th St).