ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — There unfortunately won’t be a holiday light in sight in Washington Park this winter season. Last year‘s 25th anniversary would be the last time the Albany Police Athletic League‘s fundraising event, Capital Holiday Lights, would be hosted there.
The days and nights are getting colder, signaling a ticking clock for PAL to find a new location in time for permits, setup, and launch. A representative confirms they’ve reached out to several potential candidates, but so far no other park is quite the right fit.
Back in October 2021 when it was first announced Capital Holiday Lights would have to move, PAL Chairman David Bauer told NEWS10 the biggest appeals to keep the event in Washington Park had been the infrastructure laid out for easy power access for all the light displays, as well as the park’s natural twists and turns to accommodate beautiful reveals around every corner.
However, as NEWS10 reported, neighbors surrounding the park had complained to City of Albany for years about the traffic congestion, safety hazards, trash, and headaches for them the larger Capital Holiday Lights grew. Mayor Kathy Sheehan therefore gave the event one final year in 2021 for its 25th anniversary before rescinding support for it to return.
If a new location can’t be chosen by mid-October, this may be the first time in decades the local holiday staple goes lights out. A PAL representative does confirm to NEWS10 the organization just had a very promising meeting Thursday night with a potential location. If all goes well, an announcement could be on its way this week.
PAL relies on Capital Holiday Lights every year to fund its programs for local kids like childcare, after-school events, mentorships, and sports.