Garden 2.018 Fun Run

Date and Time:
Date(s) - Monday, January 1st, 2018
4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Kick off the New Year in a fun, healthy way. Run through 2.018 miles of spectacular light displays in the most beautiful place in Hampton Roads—Norfolk Botanical Garden!


Purchase Tickets Online

Norfolk Botanical Garden (NBG) stages its 2nd annual New Year's Day fun run to complete the 19th annual Dominion Garden of Lights, a massive light show that turns NBG into a holiday wonderland. The event is primarily sponsored by Domion Power, with additional sponsorship provided by Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, Food Lion, USAA, Pepsi, and WVEC ABC 13 News. The garden was founded in 1938 by City Manager Thomas P. Thompson and Frederic Heutte as part of a Works Progress Administration grant under FDR's New Deal and is internationally reknowned today. Norfolk, Virginia. (1 January 2015, Nathanael Miller; Sparks Photography) ***Permission is hereby granted by Nathanael Miller and Sparks Photography to Norfolk Botanical Garden and Norfolk Botanical Garden Society to use these clips and images for any publicity and documentary purposes as long as credit is given (when appropriate) to "Nathanael Miller" and/or "Sparks Photography." Nathanael Miller and Sparks Photography may be reached via email at:


Last year more than 600 runners and their families enjoyed the Dominion Energy Garden of Lights annual light show extravaganza while starting off the New Year on the right foot—and the left! The Garden 2018 Fun Run is a fundraising event that helps support Norfolk Botanical Garden programs. This event is rain or shine. Enjoy a Kids’ Dash, special entertainment, food, drinks and more!  This run is fun for the entire family.  Entertainment by the C. Shells and Astro DJs.

And be sure to check out these FAQ’s

When and what time is the Garden 2.018 Fun Run?
Monday, January 1, 2018—the Garden will open at 4pm. Please review the program time schedule a the bottom of this page

How much does it cost to run?
The cost to participate in the Garden 2.018 Fun Run is $35 per person (includes t-shirt and racing bib), $10 for the Kid’s Dash (ages 3-10 only) and children 2 & under are free. All children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Do you offer discounts for members or groups?
There are no discounts available for this event.

I would like to bring family/friends with me to watch me run. Do they have to pay to get in even though they will not run?
Yes, everyone including spectators, must pay to enter the Garden. All spectators will have an opportunity to walk through the lights if they wish after all runners have gone through. All guests will also have an opportunity for pizza and a beer in Rose Garden Hall after the Run.

Is this a timed run and will I receive a prize?
No, this is not a timed run, it is a family fun run. Everyone is a winner!

Can my child run with me and the other adults?
Yes, if you wish for your child to officially run with you and receive a t-shirt and bib, they must pay $35. However there is also a “Kids Dash” specifically for young children that costs $10. They will not receive a t shirt and bib but will receive a special gift. Even if the child participates in the Kid’s Dash they can still participate in the run but will not receive a t-shirt.

Are strollers allowed?
Yes, we encourage families with children to participate. Hard core runners will be at the front of the line and all guests with strollers will be behind them.

Can I purchase a ticket at the door on the day of the event?
This event has sold out every year before the day of the event. Please check our website or call to see if we have sold out before you visit.

If I purchase a ticket online and cannot make it to the event, will I receive a refund?
There are no refunds for this event. Please consider sharing your ticket if you are not able to attend.

Can I leave right after I run?
The entrance road will be closed promptly at 5:15 p.m. to allow for the start of the run. For the safety of all participants, the road will not re-open until the last participant has completed the course, at approximately 6:15 p.m. Vehicles and participants will not be able to leave until then.

Am I guaranteed a T-shirt?
All runners will receive a t-shirt. However, you must register before December 15 to receive a specific size at check-in. Registrants who sign up after December 15 will be able to pick up a t-shirt immediately after the race inside the Rose Garden Hall lobby.

Will the Run still take place if it is raining?
This event is rain or shine. However, in case of closure due to severe weather, the Garden 2.018 Fun Run will be rescheduled for January 2, 2018, 4pm-7pm. Please check our website before coming out on January 1st.

Are pets allowed?
No, pets are not allowed at this event, except for ADA-designated service animals.

Do I have to pay for parking?
No, you do not have to pay separately for parking, it is included with your ticket. Parking attendants will direct you to parking in the main lot.

4pm Check in at Baker Hall For Kids Dash Only Sign waivers & receive
4:30pm Kids Dash BEGINS

Ages 3-4
(Kiddy Run)

Ages 5-10
(Rose Garden Bridge Dash)

Sign up kids
no t-shirts, other gift included
5pm Check in at Baker  Hall Runners
 5:15pm Garden entrance gate closes until 6pm
5:30pm Garden 2.018 Fun Run BEGINS Runners only
6pm-      7pm Non-runners may walk the lights Pizza & Beer offered
in Rose Garden Hall

For questions or sponsorship information please call 757-441-5830 ext. 380 or email

Sponsored by:

Norfolk Botanical Garden