The 5 Best Things to Do in Houston This Weekend: Zoo Lights, The Nutcracker and More

The 5 Best Things to Do in Houston This Weekend: Zoo Lights, The Nutcracker and More
Photo by Stephanie Adams

See an electrified giraffe at Zoo Lights at the Houston Zoo, our suggestion for Friday. The life-size, long-necked giraffe, a wire structure wrapped in lights, has lots of company with dozens of brightly lit horses, apes, hippos, elephants and other animal sculptures scattered around the zoo's illuminated and decorated grounds. Jackie Wallace, zoo spokesperson, tells us that with a total of 2 million lights, this year's Zoo Lights is bigger than ever. "It's doubled in size," she says.

Among the features that are new this year are a walk-in snow globe and more toy train scenes. Past visitor favorite Holly Berry, a 1958 Cadillac that's been heaped with holiday decorations and lights, is back, playing seasonal favorites. (Someone must have left her radio on.) The zoo's live oak trees, covered in twinkling lights, are a must-see. Most evenings, local choirs perform holiday carols.

"Most families take about two hours to see the entire [exhibit]," Wallace says. "There's a path for you to follow; that way you make sure and see everything." That "everything" won't include many live animals. "A lot of them are sleeping in their [quarters]," Wallace explains.

Giant turkey legs, pizza, funnel cakes, s'mores, hot chocolate -- with or without a shot of Baileys ® -- beer and wine are on the menu at the zoo's Macaw Cafe and Cypress Circle food court.

6 to 10 p.m. Daily. Through January 4. 6200 Herman Park Drive. For information, call 713-533-6500 or visit $10.95 to $12.95.

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