By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Mar 22, 2022 at 4:29 PM

After four previous illuminated installations in the Boerner Botanical Gardens – before a two-year hiatus – China Lights is back!

The China Lights Wisconsin Festival presented by TriCity National Bank returns for the first time since 2019 and takes place Sept. 16-Oct. 30.

Here are seven reasons I wrote that you shouldn't miss the 2019 show and most of them still apply.

The illuminated dragons make for a great evening under the stars, plus there's entertainment, food and more.

This year's iteration will include brand new displays, according to organizers.

More information on tickets and programming will be announcd in July, but mark your calendars! 

For more information, visit

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.