The green flag drops Nov. 16 on Speedway In Lights, the South’s largest holiday light show with a major change after 15 years.

A new route for the four miles of festive illumination gives visitors a fresh look at Speedway In Lights as they begin their drive-through trek at the Bristol Dragway entrance, just off Hwy. 394. In the past, guests have accessed the show though the South entrance of the Speedway, off Volunteer Parkway.

With millions of glowing lights and hundreds of brilliant displays positioned all around the World’s Fastest Half-Mile and throughout Thunder Valley, Speedway in Lights is a must-see event that grows in popularity each year.

Open for nearly seven weeks, the holiday display, along with its companion events – the Johnson Controls Ice Rink and HVAC Chill Hill -- offers guests an evening of fun and allows them to give back as proceeds benefit the Bristol Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities.

Raising more than $6.5 million for children’s organizations in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, Speedway in Lights is the single largest fund raiser for the Bristol Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities.

The route of sparkling lights features such favorites as the:

  • Ripley’s Penguin Playhouse and the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies display, located under the front stretch grandstands at the Speedway.
  • The Subway Symphony of Lights; a spectacular exhibit covering the Darrell Waltrip Grandstand inside Bristol Motor Speedway that features more than 300,000 LED lights synchronized to music. Symphony of Lights also features a large Christmas tree, along with dazzling snowflakes that dance in harmony on a large, ever-changing background. Light-covered arches, reflecting brilliant colors on more than three acres of aluminum grandstand seating, set the stage for a magnificent scene.
Along the route, which includes a lap around BMS and a trip through legendary Thunder Valley, visitors enjoy numerous other presentations, including the Twelve Days of Christmas, complete with 12 animated individual scenes, and Dinosaur Village, which features six dinosaurs, including a towering Tyrannosaurus Rex and an erupting volcano.
Other favorites include the cannon shot, the dueling dragsters, the Sea of Illumination and the Coal Mountain Gift Mine, which is 70 feet long and 22 feet tall. The mine features a continuous miner tossing presents through the air into a front-end loader with some help from an elf.
In addition to being the best area to view Symphony of Lights the General Shale Brick Christmas Village in the BMS infield features various carnival rides and food vendors. Before his duties at Christmas take him away Santa Claus is on hand as well.
Speedway In Lights remains open through Jan. 5. Tickets for the show, open nightly 6-10 p.m., are available at the BMS gate. Ticket prices for cars are $12 Sunday through Thursday, and $15 Friday and Saturday. Activity van tickets are $20 each night and tickets for buses are $85 each night.
Both the Johnson Controls Ice Rink ($7 admission/skate rental) and HVAC Chill Hill ($7) open Thursday, Nov. 15.
For more information concerning Speedway In Lights, the Johnson Controls Ice Rink or HVAC Chill Hill, please call 423.989.6900.