Visitor Information Center for Palm Desert & Palm Springs

Town Tradition: Local Plan For Living Desert Zoo’s

 ‘Glow In The Park’

Palm Desert’s tradition offers a way for zoo-member families to view the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens after the sun has set.

(PHOTO: Courtesy Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc. )

PALM DESERT, CA — It’s not the glowing forests of Pandora on Avatar, but it may be the next best thing for Palm Desert residents. For the second year in a row, the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens’ ‘Glow in the Park’ wildlife sanctuary installation brings the nighttime desert to life in a feast for the eyes.

Presented by Arcisure Arena, Glow in the Park is reserved for zoo members. It is a ticketed, after-hours event scheduled from 6:30 to 10 p.m. from March 17 to April 30. Tickets go on sale in late January, according to the zoo website.

Town Tradition: Local Plan For Living Desert Zoo’s ‘Glow In The Park’; PHOTO: Courtesy Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc.

For starters, take everything you know about lanterns and throw it away. The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens partnered with an installation expert who created larger-than-life light sculptures lit from within by colorful LED lights. The springtime display returns to feature themed paths that pay homage to pollinators and plants, showcase traditional Chinese lanterns and culture in unique ways, and tell visual stories of the desert in all of its extreme resilience.

Walk through the giant flamingo arch at the Glow in the Park at Living Desert Zoo. PHOTO: Courtesy Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc.

“The event is a truly awe-inspiring animal and nature-scape lantern creations are sure to delight your sight and senses,” according to the publication.

There are interactive features, such as the glowing moon swing, unicorn carriage, and glowing photo frame to mug for photos next to a glowing gorilla.

The darkness of the desert sky makes the light-up features even more spectacular.

Living Desert Zoo and Gardens CEO and President Allen Monroe discussed the added bonus of a nighttime African Safari. To see the animals of the zoo at night, is unlike any other experience The Living Desert Zoo has hosted in previous years, according to Monroe. Expect new and exciting glowing creatures in 2023.

PHOTO: Courtesy Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc.

“It’s been really exciting to see it come to life right before our eyes,” Monroe said in 2022. “Each section has its own unique theme and design and is a work of art in itself.”

This year, the magic returns, according to Monroe. “This year’s event is sure to delight as an entirely new line up of lanterns will light up the night including lanterns of desert wildlife, animals of the sea, and even mythical creatures!”

Guests can watch the desert come alive with lanterns, engaging art installations, interactive stations, and plenty of memorable photo opportunities at Glow in the Park.

Glow in the Park will be held nightly, March 17 through April 30 from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Tickets are on sale now at

Advanced reservations are required as space is limited. Tickets are purchased for a select date and time. New this year, a combo ticket is available – guests can purchase any day general admission zoo ticket and a Glow in the Park ticket for a discounted rate.

Glow in the Park is presented by Acrisure Arena home of the Coachella Valley Firebirds and sponsored by the City of Palm Desert. Produced in partnership with Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc., Glow in the Park is an extraordinary night-time event featuring intricate, immersive, and truly amazing animal and nature-scape lantern creations.

Photo: Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc.,

Tianyu Arts and Culture, Inc. designed each lantern installation in partnership with the zoo to reflect the unique location of the Coachella Valley as well as the zoo itself. The Glow in the Park is immersive, with larger-than-life lanterns and glowing landscapes that create both the engaging art installations the area is famous for as well as a backdrop for photo opportunities, according to Glow In the Park fans.

The much anticipated family-friendly event is ticketed, so zoo members can be prepared to spend a little extra if they go. Advanced reservations are required.

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is located at 47900 Portola Avenue in Palm Desert.

For more information, visit

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