Coos Bay, OR—Holiday Lights at Shore Acres State Park will open this year Nov. 24-Dec. 31 with a new timed entry system for visitors to park their vehicles 4-9 p.m. A $5 vehicle parking ticket assigned to a date and entry time of the visitors’ choice is needed to enter the show. The event parking fee is the same as the normal day-use parking permit price for the park.
Holiday Lights visitors must reserve their spot and then have their ticket for parking ready to show the ranger at the booth when they arrive at their selected times. Visitors will no longer have the option to purchase a parking permit onsite to park and attend.
“We’re excited that the Friends of Shore Acres will host Holiday Lights again in 2022 and that this timed entry system will help keep the flow of traffic moving during this very popular event,” says Lee Ricci, park manager for the Sunset Bay Management Unit.
Date and timed entry parking tickets are available now online
. Reservations also can be made by calling 800-452-5687. The $5 event parking permit is non-refundable.
The parking ticket is required to enter the event; however, the $5 fee may be waived if the person making the reservation has one of the following and selects the option during the reservation process: 12- or 24-month parking permit; special access pass for either the veterans with service-connected disabilities or foster, guardian and adoptive foster parents of Oregon foster children; current Oregon State Park camping confirmation that coincides with the date of the event visit; or an Oregon Pacific Coast Passport.
The printed ticket, as well as the selected pass, permit, or campground confirmation, must be presented to park staff at entry to keep traffic moving.
This new process will help people quickly enter the parking area and prevent long waits to enter the park, which will improve safety issues on the Cape Arago Highway. In previous years, long lines have backed up on the narrow highway and blocked side roads, which hindered traffic and emergency vehicle access.
Although visitors can reserve their timed entry parking spot now, additional spots will be available later this fall for each evening during a seven-day rolling window tentatively set to begin Nov. 18 for visits beginning Nov. 24. The rolling window will run through Dec. 31.
“We realize that it’s early for many families to make November and December plans and we want people to have an opportunity for spur-of-the-moment visits,” Ricci adds, “We’re holding half the parking sites for that rolling seven-day window to ensure visitors can reserve closer to the event.”
The Friends of Shore Acres launched the Holiday Lights show in 1987 and it continued to delight visitors through 2019. The event was paused 2020-2021 for visitor safety during the pandemic. In 2019, nearly 60,000 visitors attended. Park staff expect the light show to be just as popular in 2022, if not more after a two-year absence.
Visit the Oregon State Parks website
for 12 and 24-month parking permit and special access pass information. Oregon Pacific Coast Passport information is available at the US Forest Service website
Lee Ricci, Sunset Bay Management Unit park manager
Jason Resch, Communications manager