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Lights Festival Benefits Local Charities

winter-lights-for-sidebar 450x280The city of Gaithersburg Winter Lights Festival welcomes visitors to Seneca Creek State Park for its 18th season. The Park is located at 11950 Clopper Road, just a few miles west of the intersection with I-270. The festival runs nightly from Nov. 29 through Dec. 31. It is closed to cars on Dec. 2 and 9 to accommodate a special “Walk Under the Lights” event, and will be closed to all on Dec. 25. Winter Lights is open Sunday through Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 6 to 10 p.m. Cash-only admission is $12 per car Monday through Thursday and $15 per car Friday through Sunday.

In the spirit of the holidays, a portion of the admission proceeds from the 2013 festival will benefit six local charities.

Andy’s Safe Haven (ASH) is an organization that rescues dogs that are scheduled for euthanasia in high-kill shelters. ASH reaches out to local shelters (the Humane Society in Rockville serves the Gaithersburg community) to establish a relationship so that they will be notified when euthanasia lists are published by the shelters each week. Individuals sponsor such dogs through donations to pay for kenneling in a safe haven where they can be fostered and, hopefully, adopted.

The Asbury Methodist Village in Support of Gaithersburg Beloved Community Initiative (GBCI) is a collaborative effort between the residents of Asbury Methodist Village and a network of community partners within the vcity of Gaithersburg. Through the GBCI, intergenerational relationships and initiatives are developed involving Asbury Methodist Village residents and the diverse cultures and backgrounds of children, youth and families who reside in the neighborhoods surrounding Asbury. These initiatives include CHARACTER COUNTS! mentoring, nature photography, tree planting, gardening, life stories, Spanish/English conversation, and pool parties.

Baby’s Bounty MC, Inc. is devoted to providing essential clothing and gear to babies born into disadvantaged families. Since it opened in March of 2013, Baby’s Bounty MC, Inc. has initiated three programs for new babies in need: “Good Night, Sleep Tight” provides new babies a safe sleep environment; “Baby Car-Go” ensures that newborns travel safely in a car seat; and “Diaper Bag Delivery” provides essential items for a newborn’s well-being.

Friends of Wells/Robertson House, Inc. is a community effort that is supported by the City of Gaithersburg, contributions from local businesses and residents, and grants. It has existed as a nonprofit organization since 1994 and is run solely by volunteers. Its mission is to support a continuum of prevention and intervention programs and services to reduce chronic addiction and homelessness in the community.

For the past 30 years the Gaithersburg Community Soup Kitchen has provided hot nutritious meals and other essential services to homeless and needy persons in the Gaithersburg area. During this time, the Soup Kitchen has served approximately 15,000 meals annually and assisted many in need of finding shelter and obtaining medical and financial support services.

Pain Connection – Chronic Pain Outreach Center, Inc. was incorporated as a Maryland nonprofit corporation in 1999 and serves Gaithersburg residents. Its mission is to empower people with chronic pain to improve their quality of life, increase functionality, decrease their sense of isolation, and enable them to take a more active role in their treatment. Pain Connection does this by providing information, psychosocial support, coping skills, and training to individuals with chronic pain, as well as their families and healthcare providers.

Winter Lights is sponsored in part by 97.1 WASH FM, the Gazette Newspapers, Washington Parent, Falun Dafa Assn. of D.C. presents Shen Yun, Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, The Epoch Times, Washingtonian Center, Hughes Network Systems, and Whole Foods Market – Kentlands.

For more information and group admission rates please call 301.258.6350 or visit


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