Holiday photo op at Lincoln Memorial Garden

click to enlarge Holiday photo op at Lincoln Memorial Garden
John and Hannah Witter, visiting from California

For a perfect holiday family photo spot and a break from the hustle and bustle of the season, head out to Lincoln Memorial Garden. Through Christmas, there are two festive backdrops available for you to take your own special holiday photos. One area next to the nature center features a hay wagon, decorated tree, garland, lights, packages and an old sled. A less traditional backdrop is the nine-foot troll, installed earlier this year as a collaborative project with the Springfield Art Association. The troll is now decked out with a red Santa hat and scarf for the holiday season. The troll is at Council Ring 3, just a few steps from the nature center. Both spots are fully accessible for people with baby strollers, walkers and wheelchairs. This is all free, and no reservations are required. A donation box is nearby.

A new accessible path near the photo spots features a story trail, developed in partnership with Springfield's Lincoln Library. Panels with a children's story line the pathway, and a new story is installed monthly.

The nature center is a place to warm up and do some holiday shopping. It is open Tuesday-Saturday 10 a.m-4 p.m and Sunday 1 p.m-4 p.m.

Lincoln Memorial Garden will also be celebrating the winter solstice on Friday, Dec. 17 at 5 p.m., in partnership with Unity of Springfield. For more information about the garden and its many offerings, go to The garden is at 2301 East Lake Shore Drive.