Winter nights can get a little long, but there’s much to experience in the outdoors even when the sun has gone down. Trails lit by candlelight offer a chance to enjoy some of the season’s magic.
Listen for owls, watch for animal tracks, experience silence and solitude, and find camaraderie with fellow snow lovers at one of the below events. At a variety of locations along and near the St. Croix River, special luminary nights have become a popular way to pass a winter night in nature.
Find all candlelight events in Minnesota state parks and other areas here.
Pine Point Outing Lodge (Stillwater)
Saturday, Jan. 18, 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Enjoy a Minnesota winter with an evening at the Outing Lodge. Follow an luminary lit snowshoe walk through Pine Point Park; then enjoy outdoor bonfires. Retire indoors for comfort food of Outing Lodge’s famous – hearty pastry puff chicken pot pie. Make s’mores afterwards in front of the Lodge’s 7 foot fireplace. Details
Saturday, Feb. 15, 5:45 pm – 9:30 pm
This candlelit snowshoe and culinary dinner experience is a celebration of love, nature, and good food! Follow an luminary lit snowshoe walk through Pine Point Park; then enjoy outdoor bonfires. Retire indoors for a chef-prepared multi-course culinary dinner. Details
Gateway State Trail (Mahtomedi)
Friday, Jan 24, 5-8 p.m.
Trails lit by candles are beautiful and almost magical. Hot drinks and bonfires, fun and friends! Join us for this popular annual event starting from Wildwood Elementary, Mahtomedi. 8698 75th St N, Stillwater, MN 55082.
One mile of trail will be lit so round-trip could be up to 2 miles. Leashed dogs are welcome, no reservations are needed for this self paced walk.
Afton State Park
Saturday, Feb 1, 5-8 p.m.
Trails lit by candles are beautiful and almost magical. Hot drinks and bonfires, fun and friends! Join us for this popular annual event For more information and location call 651-436-5391. Leashed dogs are welcome on the trails, no reservations required for this self paced walk. Trails may be slippery in spots as it is winter so ice traction devices could be helpful.
Wild River State Park (North Branch)
Saturday, Feb. 8, 6-9 p.m.
Illuminating up to 3 miles of trails, candles will guide you through a once-in-a-winter opportunity at Wild River. Snowshoers, skiers, and walkers are welcome to take to the trails. Musicians and bonfires will also be available for you to enjoy the evening. Activities throughout park. If you are interested in renting snowshoes or cross country skis for the event, they will be available at the trail center. To reserve a pair, call 651-257-0685.
Find all candlelight events in Wisconsin state parks and other areas here.
Birkie Trail, Highway OO Trailhead (Hayward)
Sunday, January 26⋅4:00 – 6:30pm
Join us to snowshoe or cross-country ski a luminaria lit trail! Sponsored by First Lutheran Church and the Hayward & Chequamegon Lions Clubs. Registration and $10 donation can be dropped off at Hayward First Lutheran Church or mailed to 14451W Court Oreilles Lake Dr, Hayward WI, 54843. Registration also accepted the day of the event. Details
Crex Meadows Candlelight Snowshoe Hike (Grantsburg)
Friday, February 7, 2020, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Enjoy a peaceful evening walking or snowshoeing on the 1.25 mile trail behind the Visitors Center. Luminaries will light your way through the woods. Warm up inside with hot chocolate and baked goods. Snowshoes available on a first come, first serve basis or bring your own. Even with little to no snow, we will still have the event. Flashlights/headlamps suggested.
Interstate Park (St. Croix Falls)
Saturday, February 15, 2020, 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Come out and enjoy a beautiful winter night at the annual Candlelight Night at Interstate Park. Hundreds of luminaries will guide your path as you ski, snowshoe or hike. Stop in at the Ice Age Visitor Center for bonfires, refreshments, live music provided by the Geezers and snowshoe rentals. Fun for the whole family! A vehicle admission sticker is required and can be purchased at the park. Sponsored by the Friends of Interstate Park.
Willow River Candlelight Ski, Hike and Snowshoe (Hudson)
Saturday, February 15, 2020, 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Please come join the Friends of Willow River and Kinnickinnic State Parks as they host a Candlelight Ski, Snowshoe, and Hike event. Both hiking and ski trails will be illuminated totaling over 2 miles of trail. There will be two bonfires and refreshments will be available. Please do not bring pets and regular park admission does apply. Contact the park with any questions.