One of the most anticipated and beloved holiday events of 2021 is back for another year of magic at the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens. 


The Zoo today announced that the dazzling displays of Asian Lantern Festival: Into the Wild will return on select nights from November 18, 2022 to January 15, 2023. And this year, a new name will be up in lights. Publix has been announced as the festival’s presenting sponsor.


“This is a cornerstone event for us at the Central Florida Zoo,” said CEO Richard E. Glover, Jr. “It’s dazzling, fun and educational. It’s a true community event, and partnering with Publix just made sense. We’re excited to have them and thrilled to offer those in Central Florida the opportunity to enjoy this spectacular event again.”


The festival features dozens of larger-than-life, hand-crafted lanterns that are lit by thousands of LED lights, resulting in a gorgeous display of color, light and sound that celebrates traditional Asian lantern festivals. 


The lanterns are situated on a 3/4-mile loop around the Zoo, providing a truly unique take on a holiday lights show that will leave attendees clamoring to come back again and again with friends and family. 


This is the third year for the festival, which started in 2019 and was not held in 2020. Last year, almost all nights of the event hit capacity. Nearly all of the lanterns will be new to the festival this year, so past attendees will have plenty to capture their senses.


This is the first year Publix is sponsoring the event.


“We are proud to be the presenting sponsor of the Asian Lantern Festival: Into the Wild Series coming to the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens,” said Hannah Herring, Publix media relations manager. “At Publix, we have a history of caring for our customers, associates and communities. We are excited to sponsor an event for the entire family to enjoy this holiday season.”   


More information about the festival days and hours will be on the Zoo’s website, and tickets will go on sale to the public soon.


The festival is presented in partnership with Tianyu Arts & Culture, Inc. For more information about the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens, visit


For high-resolution photos and video of last year’s event, click here.


About the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens 

The Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens is home to over 300 animals in Sanford, Florida. As a not-for-profit organization, it is a leader in conservation, providing experiences that excite and inspire adults and children to learn and act on behalf of wildlife. More information is available at 


Media Contact:               

William Wellons 

Wellons Communications