New York Sky Lantern Festival – A Must-See Lighting Event


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Welcome to the New York Sky Lantern Festival – a mesmerizing event that illuminates the spirit of unity and love.


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Festival highlights

About the New York Sky Lantern Festival

The New York Sky Lantern Festival is more than just a spectacle of lights; it is a beacon of hope and solidarity. As part of the larger “Lights Over America” event, this festival not only captivates attendees with the ethereal beauty of countless sky lanterns illuminating the night sky but also serves a noble cause. A significant portion of the festival’s proceeds is dedicated to supporting the homeless, making each lantern released a symbol of hope for those in need.

Beyond the mesmerizing display of sky lanterns, the event promises an immersive experience with a plethora of live entertainment options and a diverse array of culinary delights. Attendees can revel in the vibrant atmosphere, where music fills the air, and the scent of delicious food tempts the senses. It is an opportunity to enjoy the present moment while being part of something that reaches beyond the festivities to touch the lives of others positively.

Overall, the New York Sky Lantern Festival embodies the spirit of unity and hope, making it an essential addition to the cultural calendar of the city. It beckons to all, inviting them to be part of an event that not only offers a stunning light show but also contributes to a greater cause.

Festival Dates (2024)

The New York Sky Lantern Festival is set to illuminate the skies on October 5, 2024, falling on a Saturday. This single-day event invites attendees to partake in an unforgettable experience, from dusk till the night is aglow with lanterns. 

As autumn’s embrace begins to cool the city, this festival of lights offers a warm gathering for friends, families, and strangers alike. Ensure you’re part of this magical evening, where the skyline becomes a canvas for our collective hopes and dreams.

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An image inspired by the breathtaking New York Sky Lantern Festival

Where It’s Located and How to Get There

The New York Sky Lantern Festival finds its home at Jones Beach State Park, located at 1 Ocean Parkway, Wantagh, New York 11793, USA. This iconic location, known for its stunning beaches and captivating views, offers the perfect backdrop for the festival’s enchanting display of lights. 

With its expansive sandy shores, the park transforms into a magical space where sky lanterns rise into the night sky, creating a spectacle of warmth and light against the cool ocean breeze. It’s a venue that complements the festival’s ethos, blending natural beauty with the communal spirit of hope and celebration.

Jones Beach State Park is conveniently situated near John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), making it accessible for both local and international visitors. The distance between the airport and the festival location is about 22 miles, a journey that can vary in time depending on the mode of transportation chosen.

To travel from JFK to Jones Beach State Park, visitors have several options:

  • Taxi or Rideshare: Direct, convenient, but more costly. The ride takes approximately 35-45 minutes depending on traffic.
  • Public Transportation: Combining bus and train services. Take the AirTrain from JFK to Jamaica Station, then a Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) train to Freeport Station, followed by a bus to the park. This option requires more time but is cost-effective.
  • Car Rental: Offers flexibility and the opportunity to explore the area at your own pace. Parking is available at the park.

For those journeying from other cities by train, here’s how to reach the festival:

  • From New York City: Take the LIRR from Penn Station to Freeport Station, then catch a bus directly to Jones Beach State Park.
  • From Philadelphia: Board an Amtrak train to Penn Station in New York City, then follow the above instructions from New York City to the festival.
  • From Boston: Take an Amtrak train to Penn Station in New York City, and then use the LIRR and bus connection to Jones Beach State Park as detailed above.

If you liked this festival, you can also check out these other amazing spectacles of lights:

Pocono Raceway Lantern Festival

Pingxi Lantern Festival

Festival Hours

The New York Sky Lantern Festival is set to illuminate the night from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM, offering a four-hour window into a world aglow with wonder. As darkness falls, the festival comes alive, inviting participants into an evening brimming with enchantment and communal joy. 

Lanterns begin their ascent into the night sky, painting it with hues of hope and dreams. It’s an experience that not only lights up the night but also the hearts of all those who partake.

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An image inspired from the New York Sky Lantern Festival

How Much Does It Cost to Attend the New York Sky Lantern Festival

Attending the New York Sky Lantern Festival offers a range of ticket options to accommodate everyone’s needs, starting with the Adult ticket priced at $95 for those aged 12 and above. For those eager to bypass longer waits, an Adult Skip the Line ticket is available for $110, ensuring a faster check-in process. Children under the age of 11 can join in the festivities for $45, with a Skip the Line option priced at $60, making it easier for families to kickstart their magical evening without delay.

To streamline the arrival process, a Parking Pass can be purchased for $30, a practical add-on for those driving to the event. This option not only guarantees a parking spot close to the festivities but also adds convenience to the overall experience. For groups or families looking for an upgraded experience, the festival offers a package that includes 2 General Admission tickets, a Reserved Fire Pit for cozy gatherings, and 1 Parking Pass for $280.

Larger groups are not left out, with a package designed to accommodate four people. This package, priced at $470, includes 4 General Admission tickets, offering a collective experience of the light festival’s enchanting atmosphere. Along with the Reserved Fire Pit and 1 Parking Pass included, it’s the perfect choice for friends or families seeking to enjoy the festival’s warmth and beauty together, creating lasting memories under the glow of thousands of lanterns.

Weather and What to Wear

October in Wantagh, New York, offers a quintessential autumn experience, characterized by crisp air and the gradual change of leaves. The temperatures during this month can be quite variable, typically ranging from highs of around 60°F (15°C) during the day to cooler evenings that can dip down to 50°F (10°C) or lower. It’s a season of transition, where the warmth of summer slowly gives way to the cooler embrace of fall, making for a delightful backdrop to the New York Sky Lantern Festival.

To ensure a comfortable experience at the festival, visitors are recommended to dress accordingly:

  • Layered Clothing: A base layer topped with a sweater or fleece, allowing for adjustments with the day’s changing temperatures.
  • Warm Outerwear: A jacket or coat for the evening when temperatures drop, ensuring warmth during the lantern launching.
  • Comfortable Footwear: Shoes suitable for walking and standing, as you’ll likely explore different areas of the festival.
  • Accessories: Hats, scarves, and gloves can add extra warmth for the evening, especially as the event continues past sunset.
  • Rain Gear: An umbrella or waterproof jacket is wise to have on hand, as October can occasionally bring showers.

Where to Sleep – Hotels Nearby

After a mesmerizing evening at the New York Sky Lantern Festival, finding a comfortable place to rest is essential. Here are three hotels nearby that offer a blend of comfort, convenience, and amenities to ensure a pleasant stay:

Jones Beach Hotel

  • Location: 3275 Byron St, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: This 3-star hotel combines historic charm with modern amenities, nestled in a quiet, residential area close to the festival site.
  • Amenities: Free parking, free Wi-Fi, and a bar for relaxing evenings.

Best Western Bar Harbour Inn

  • Location: 5080 Sunrise Hwy, Massapequa Park, NY 11762, United States
  • Description: A cozy 2-star hotel that offers a convenient location near shopping and dining options, perfect for visitors looking to explore the area.
  • Amenities: Free Wi-Fi, an indoor pool to unwind, and complimentary breakfast to start the day right.

Long Island Marriott

  • Location: 101 James Doolittle Blvd, Uniondale, NY 11553, United States
  • Description: This 3-star hotel provides a luxurious stay with spacious rooms and top-notch service, located a short drive from Jones Beach State Park.
  • Amenities: Free parking, a fitness center for health enthusiasts, and free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel.

Where to Eat

Discovering local culinary delights is an essential part of any festival experience. Here are three restaurants near the New York Sky Lantern Festival where you can indulge in a variety of flavors and dishes:

Wantagh Inn

  • Location: 3264 Railroad Ave, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: A cozy and inviting establishment known for its warm ambiance, complete with a fireplace, perfect for a relaxing meal.
  • Foods Served: Specializes in grilled filet of salmon, seafood pasta, and chicken milanese, alongside offering happy hour food and vegetarian options.

Snaps American Bistro

  • Location: 2010 Wantagh Ave, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: A lively bistro that provides a casual dining experience with a comprehensive menu suitable for all ages, including a kids’ menu.
  • Foods Served: Favorites include grilled salmon, classic Caesar salad, and a variety of burgers, complemented by happy hour specials.

Lighthouse Diner

  • Location: 3240 Sunrise Hwy, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: A classic diner offering a comfortable, family-friendly atmosphere with a menu that caters to various tastes, including vegetarian dishes.
  • Foods Served: Known for its chicken kebab, stuffed pepper parmesan, and  tuna salad, ensuring there’s something for everyone.

More Things to Do in the Area

Exploring the area around the New York Sky Lantern Festival offers visitors a chance to engage with a variety of recreational and leisure activities. Here are some attractions that provide additional enjoyment and relaxation:

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Wantagh Park

  • Location: 1 King Rd, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: A sprawling 111-acre county park situated along a scenic waterfront in the hamlet of Wantagh, offering a peaceful retreat within Nassau County.
  • Activities to Explore: Enjoy a range of recreational activities including playgrounds, tennis courts, a swimming pool, and walking paths that offer serene views of the waterfront.

Sensory Beans

  • Location: 3309 Merrick Rd, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: An indoor playground in Wantagh designed with a focus on providing sensory-friendly activities, perfect for families with young children.
  • Activities to Explore: Offers a safe and stimulating environment with a variety of play equipment and activities tailored to engage children’s senses and encourage playful learning.

Twin Lakes Preserve

  • Location: 200 Park Ave, Wantagh, NY 11793, United States
  • Description: A serene nature preserve in Wantagh, offering a natural oasis for wildlife observation and outdoor activities amidst the bustling surroundings.
  • Activities to Explore: Ideal for fishing, bird watching, and hiking along well-maintained trails that meander through the preserve’s tranquil lakes and marshlands.

An Illuminating Conclusion: Wrapping Up Your Unforgettable Visit to the New York Sky Lantern Festival

The New York Sky Lantern Festival is a beacon of light and hope, promising an unforgettable experience under the stars. With its array of ticket options, attendees can enjoy the festival’s warmth and beauty in a way that suits them best, all while supporting a noble cause. 

Whether you’re local or traveling from afar, the surrounding area offers plenty of attractions, dining, and accommodation to make your visit complete. This festival is not just an event; it’s a memory in the making, set against the backdrop of Wantagh’s natural beauty.


Is there parking available at the New York Sky Lantern Festival?

Yes, parking is available for attendees. A Parking Pass can be purchased in advance for $30, ensuring you have a designated spot close to the festival grounds.

Are pets allowed at the festival?

Unfortunately, pets are not allowed at the festival to ensure the safety and comfort of all attendees and the animals themselves.

Is smoking permitted at the festival site?

Smoking, including the use of e-cigarettes, is not permitted within the festival area. This policy helps ensure a clean and enjoyable environment for all attendees.

Can I bring my own food and drinks to the festival?

While small snacks and water are allowed, we encourage attendees to enjoy the variety of food and beverages available from the curated selection of food trucks and stalls.

What should I do if it rains on the day of the festival?

The festival will proceed rain or shine. We recommend checking the weather forecast and coming prepared with rain gear if needed. In extreme weather conditions, check the festival’s official website and social media for updates.

Are there any age restrictions for attending the festival?

The festival is a family-friendly event open to all ages. Children under the age of 11 benefit from reduced ticket prices, and there are activities and entertainment options suitable for guests of all ages.

Can I refund or exchange my ticket if I can’t attend?

For information on ticket refund, please visit the festival’s official website.

Is the festival accessible for people with disabilities?

Absolutely, the festival is committed to being accessible to all. There are designated parking areas, accessible restrooms, and pathways suitable for wheelchairs.

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An image inspired by the New York Sky Lantern Festival


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