Stephen Foster State Park

Campground at Stephen Foster Cultural Center

Campground at Stephen Foster Cultural Center

It was cool and overcast today, but after I got out walking, it felt crisp and invigorating.

Lights strung on the huge live oak trees are a magical site at Christmas.

Lights strung on the huge live oak trees are a magical site at Christmas.

Workmen have been busy here since September stringing the lights for the Christmas Light Extravaganza.  If you would like to see a picture of how it will look when it’s finished, here are photos I took when we visited December 21, 2011.

Our campsite here is not that great.  It’s way in the back and is surrounded by dense scrub.  It’s almost too private because we can’t people watch back here!  But it’s a great place to cocoon in the chilly weather.

Sheba has amazed me this trip.  She has been so good!  Mom’s husband, Jean, remarked that she sure is a well-behaved dog.  She listens to commands, doesn’t get upset by having to be tied up between walks, and has only barked a few times.

Here's our campsite.

Here’s our campsite.

I am SO glad we survived puppyhood with her and did not adopt her out.  Everyone she meets loves her, and I often hear people say, “I used to have a dog like that….”

I missed being able to visit the museum and craft demonstrations today.  I just assumed they would be open.  Will have to check my paperwork and hope they are open on the weekend.

Anyway, we are relaxed and happy!  We have reservations at a county park at Mt. Dora Monday-Wednesday.  That’s all that was available on such short notice.  After that, we’ll probably hit one of the Ocala National Forest campsites for a few days, then head back to Ocean Pond to camp with Gail and Mike again.

Craft shops being readied for Christmas

Craft shops being readied for Christmas

Gift shop

Gift shop

Museum

Museum

Sunset on moss

Sunset on moss

My girl Sheba

My girl Sheba

Carillon tower (sp).  We have enjoyed the songs of the bells.

Carillon tower (sp). We have enjoyed the songs of the bells.

 

Stephen Foster Festival of Lights & Craft Village

I don't have words for the stunning beauty and elegance of the intricately lit trees. The dark areas are where hanging Spanish moss obscures the light.

We went to the Festival of Lights at Stephen Foster Memorial State Park in White Springs, Florida this evening.

I’ve seen a lot of Christmas light displays, but the emphasis on the stunning forms of the huge old Live Oak trees with countless intricately woven lights is beyond my ability to describe.

Craft Village is a series of small buildings where live demonstrations of different crafts are presented.  During the Festival, these buildings are decorated to the hilt for Christmas.  We wandered through the shops, watching the demonstrations and admiring the quality, hand crafted merchandise offered for sale.

Palm tree

Free popcorn, hot chocolate, and marshmallows with skewers for toasting were available to everyone.  Amazing, since admission was only $2.00 per person!

There was also a music program which we missed because we weren’t sure where it was supposed to be.  But we greatly enjoyed the sound of Christmas carols pealing from the bells in the carillon tower.

I was told that the Festival will run every night through January 1, except December 25 and 26.  So if you are in the area, don’t miss this wonderful, unique presentation!

Weaving

Quilting

The blacksmith shop was the only one that was not staffed.

Tree and bell tower

The free popcorn station

The aromatherapy shop

A craft village shop

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