SLIDESHOW: Las Noches de las Luminarias at Desert Botanical Garden

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(Source: Desert Botanical Garden) (Source: Desert Botanical Garden)

The Southwest elegance and beauty of the Desert Botanical Garden at night -- lit by more than 8,000 hand-lit luminaria bags and thousands of white twinkle lights (16 miles of them!) -- will remind you of what the season is all about.

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[WATCH: Desert Botanical Garden lights up for the holidays Part 1 | Part 2]

Las Noches de las Luminarias is the longest-running tradition at Desert Botanical Garden, dating back to 1978. 

For that first event, DBG staffers lit 700 luminarias and welcomed 600 guests for an enchanting single-night experience.

Rodney Engard, the Garden's executive director at the time, and his staff "wanted to create a holiday event, that represented the southwest and complemented the beauty of the Garden, that was a gift to the community." 

[MORE HOLIDAY MAGIC: Spectacular Phoenix-area neighborhood light displays]

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The event was such a success that it has been expanded and improved every year since, becoming a beloved holiday tradition here in the Phoenix area.

While traditional luminarias made of brown paper bags, sand and candles were used until 2006, faux luminaria bags are used today. They are more fire resistant, hold up better against Mother Nature and are reusable. The glow, however, is just as beautiful.

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  • Mariachi Pasión & Ballet Folklorico Quetzalli
  • Run Boy Run | Americana Bluegrass
  • Traveler featuring Scott Jeffers | World Fusion Music
  • Simply Three | Classical Crossover (all nights excluding Nov. 24 -25 and Dec. 23-26)
  • The Sugar Thieves | Delta Blues and Americana (Nov. 24-25, Dec. 23, 26)
  • Mother Road Trio | Blues, Swing and Gypsy Soul (all evenings except Dec. 9)
  • The Sahnas Brothers | Spanish and Mediterranean Fusion (Dec. 9)
  • Salt River Brass | Classical and holiday
  • Liberty Wildlife | Raptors of Arizona
  • Yellowbird/ Duncan Family | Apache Winter Stories & Native Flute
  • Cowboy and Cowgirl Stories | Arizona & Western Songs and Stories
  • Sue Harris (Nov. 24-25)
  • Dolan Ellis - Arizona's Official Balladeer (Dec. 1-10)
  • Sid Hausman (Dec. 15-30)
  • Explora Un Tesoro En El Desierto | Meet the on-air Talent of Univision (Dec. 17)

Important info

Los Noches de las Luminarias runs Dec. 8-10, 15-17, 19-23 and 26-30, 5:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.

For members, tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children 3-12. Tickets for the general public are $30 for adults and $12.50 for children 3-12.

Desert Botanical Garden is located at 1201 N. Galvin Parkway, Phoenix.

For more information or to buy tickets, go to

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