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D is for Desert Botanical Garden Chihuly After Dark

Chihuly Lights at the Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona (photo by Tui Snider)
Chihuly Lights at the Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona (photo by Tui Snider)

Most Parks Close at Sunset

I love parks, but have you ever noticed they usually close at sunset? What’s that all about? Oh, OK. I’m sure there are good reasons for this… That said, one thing I loved about the Desert Botanical Garden’s Chihuly After Dark exhibit is that the park didn’t even open until sunset!

Chihuly After Dark: Bustling, Yet Mellow

While the event was well-attended, the Chihuly After Dark crowd was very mellow. Most people spoke in whispers, as if we had all agreed in advance not to intrude on anyone’s reverie. That never happens during the day! There was a variety of music, too, from a mariachi band, to jazz, to a group of Christmas carolers dressed in Victorian garb. I especially enjoyed listening to a Native American man tell stories by a fire.

Didn’t Need a Flashlight

Even though we had flashlights with us, we barely used them. Between the moonlight and the lighting on the plants and glasswork, we were able to find our way through the Chihuly After Dark installation with ease.

Dale Chihuly: Delicate Yet Organic

I really wanted my photos to show how Chihuly’s delicate-yet-organic glasswork echoes the shapes of the plants, but it was challenging. Even so, I hope you enjoy the photos in this post. What about you? Have you ever been to a public park after dark? Are you a Dale Chihuly fan?

Chihuly Lights at the Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona (photo by Tui Snider)
Chihuly Lights at the Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona (photo by Tui Snider)

Follow me on Instagram & I’ll follow you back!

I’ve gone from turning up my nose at the idea of cell phone pictures, to being an avid iPhone photographer, which is why my theme for the 2014 A to Z blog challenge is Instagram Travel Photos. If you are on Instagram, I’d be delighted to follow you. Simply follow my photo feed (@TuiSnider) on Instagram and I’ll follow you back!

For more, check out my collaboration with Morgan Dragonwillow. Morgan used my iPhone photos to accompany her poems in a book called Wild Woman Waking. Check it out!

Chihuly Lights at the Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona (photo by Tui Snider)
Chihuly Lights at the Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona (photo by Tui Snider)

What is the April A to Z Blog Challenge?

Each April, people from all over the world participate in the April A to Z blog challenge, and you can too. It’s a lot of fun and it’s a great way to meet other bloggers. To play along, all you do is make a blog post for each letter of the alphabet during April, then use the blog hop linky to visit as many other bloggers as you can.

My A to Z Inspired Book: Unexpected Texas

I’d like to thank everyone who commented on my blog during the A to Z Challenge last year, because it convinced me to take the self-publishing plunge. On March 2, 2014, I released Unexpected Texas as a paperback and eBook and it quickly became an Amazon Best Seller!

Check out other A to Z blogs below:

Check out the other participants of the A to Z Challenge 


Tui Snider
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Published inTravel Photo Essays


  1. Love love your first photo. What a wonderful idea to have this exhibit after dark.

    • Tui Snider Tui Snider

      Thank you, Viridian! I wish more parks would offer after-dark programs. :D

  2. Chihuly is awesome. He has an outdoor display at the Honolulu Academy of Arts too.

    • Tui Snider Tui Snider

      Hi Courtney, That Chihuly sure gets around! I didn’t know he had a display over in Hawaii, too. :D

  3. Loved all the pictures (as always), Tui! I would so love to pack up a suitcase and follow you along on your adventures, but not sure my family would appreciate that too much. ;) So keep posting the amazing places you have visited and I’ll add them to my list of places I want to visit with my family.

    • Tui Snider Tui Snider

      Hi Randa, It may appear otherwise, but most of my travels are due to my efforts to see family members. We’re scattered across so many time zones. I’m always missing someone! :/ I think it would be fun to go on a photo jaunt in north Texas with you sometime. :D

  4. What an amazing place! I’ve never seen anything like it. I didn’t even know after-dark parks existed. Thanks for sharing!

    • Tui Snider Tui Snider

      Hi Holli, Yes – there is just something marvelous about experiencing nature at night. Sure, it’s fun during the day… But at night? I think it’s good for people. :D

    • Tui Snider Tui Snider

      Hi Patricia, I hope you get a chance to visit. Even if you don’t go to the botanical gardens, the state of Arizona is pretty dang gorgeous what with those big saguaro cactus and the red earth. Oh, and if you are there when the citrus trees are blooming, it smells amazing! :D

  5. I love these pictures and the idea of being there after dark. I have yet to see our Botanical Gardens in this area and this makes me want to check it out while the weather is still nice. Thanks for another great post!

    • Tui Snider Tui Snider

      Hi Morgan, It was a treat to be in the gardens after dark. I hope you do get a chance to visit the ones near you soon. I’ve been surprised by how many lovely botanical gardens there are here in north Texas. There are still at least 3 within a day’s drive of me that I have not seen, yet! :D

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