Join the City of Orlando for the Holidays

Join the City of Orlando for the Holidays



The holiday season is the best time of year to experience the City of Orlando’s wide array of festive and free events, celebrating the community with holiday spirit. Throughout the months of November and December, there are a number of family-friendly events and activities furthering the city’s commitment to provide amenities and entertainment for everyone in Orlando.




Sunday, November 25, 2018

7:45 a.m.

*Work on the star will begin at 7:45 a.m. with the raising of the star to take place between 8 – 9:30 a.m.*


Jack Kazanzas Star Installation

Downtown Orlando, Intersection of Orange Avenue and Central Boulevard


The tradition of raising the 600-pound golden star began when two competing department stores, Ivey’s on the east of Orange Avenue and Dickson & Ives on the west, joined together in 1955 to hang the historic Christmas star between the two stores. The raising of the star marks the start of the holiday season in the City of Orlando. 


3 p.m. – Handel’s Messiah, Presented by the Messiah Choral Society

Bob Carr Theater, 401 West Livingston Street


The Messiah Choral Society is hosting its the 43rd annual performance of “Handel’s Messiah,” conducted by Dr. John Sinclair, Chair and Professor of Music at Rollins College. The concert features familiar masterworks performed by a more than 120-member choir, including professional soloists.


Friday, November 29, 2018

11:45 a.m. -1:15 p.m.  – What’s Up Downtown for the Holidays 
Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


The Downtown Development Board’s annual holiday edition of What’s Up Downtown at Lake Eola Park will feature performances from the Russian Ballet Orlando, Mad Cow Theatre, Dr. Phillips Center Premier Performance Ensemble Docs & Dellas, Howard Middle School Jazz Band and Howard Middle School Show Choir.

Friday, November 30, 2018

5 p.m. – Tree Lighting Celebration

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park

The City of Orlando’s annual Tree Lighting Celebration at Lake Eola Park will feature the official lighting of the city’s 72-foot Christmas tree featuring 88,000 animated lights that will perform nightly in a synchronized light show. The event also includes live entertainment and holiday music. 

5:30 p.m.  Thornton Park District Christmas Tree Decorating

Olde Town Brokers, 11 North Summerlin Avenue


Thornton Park Main Street District invites residents to hang ornaments and string lights on the Main Street District’s tree during its Christmas tree decorating event. Santa Claus will also stop by for photos with the children.


Friday, November 30 – Sunday, December 23, 2018

Fri & Sat 4:30-9 p.m.; Sunday 5-8 p.m. Santa Claus at the Eola House

Eola House, 512 East Washington Street


Santa Claus will be available for photos at the Eola House all-month long, spreading Christmas cheer.

Friday, November 30 – Saturday, January 5, 2018

Eola Wonderland Christmas Tree Show

Lake Eola Park


The Eola Wonderland Christmas Tree comes alive with a synchronized light and music show every night at: 5:45 p.m.; 6:45 p.m.; 7:45 p.m.; 8:45 p.m. and 9:45 p.m.

Saturday, December 1 – Saturday, December 30, 2018

Deck the Downtown

Downtown Orlando


The Downtown Orlando Partnership, Downtown Arts District Orlando, Church Street District, Thornton Park District and Downtown Development Board are hosting “Deck the Downtown” December 1 – 31. Throughout this time, Downtown Orlando businesses will be “decked-out” with festive lights and window decorations. A map will guide residents and guests as they walk the streets of Downtown, enjoying the creativity and holiday spirit of each of the participating business locations. Deck the DTO location maps can be found online at


Saturday, December 1, 2018

6 p.m. – News 6 Holiday Concert at Lake Eola Park

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


The Florida Symphony Youth Orchestra will perform live at Lake Eola Park. Residents are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy to support the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program, which helps more than 3,500 underprivileged children receive new toys each holiday season. 

Thursday, December 6, 2018

5 p.m. – Holiday on the Drive

Edgewater Drive between Smith Street and Clayton Street

The College Park Main Street District invites residents to Holiday on the Drive, a free event on Edgewater Drive, which will be shut down and transformed into a winter wonderland. During the event, Santa and friends will be in College Park to ring in the holiday season and shops along the drive will be open for holiday shopping.

Friday, December 7, 2018

7 p.m. – Holiday Movie at Lake Eola Park – “Polar Express”

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


Every week during the holiday season, a free movie will be played at the Walt Disney Amphitheater at Lake Eola Park. This week’s free holiday movie is “Polar Express,” an animated film based on the children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

4 p.m. – Rotary Club of Orlando Christmas Parade

Starts at Orange and Robinson, ends at Robinson and Rosalind

The Rotary Club of Orlando is hosting its inaugural Christmas parade, complete with floats, pedestrian groups and vehicle fleets.

Friday, December 14, 2018

7 p.m. – Annual Violectric Holiday Show

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


Violectric is performing its sixth annual Violectric Holiday Show, presented by the City of Orlando Families, Parks & Recreation Department. This is a free and pet-friendly live concert featuring holiday classics such as “The First Noel” and “Hanukkah O Hanukkah” and rock hits like “Sweet Dreams.” Attendees are encouraged to bring their pets and anyone who brings a pet supply or makes a donation for Pet Alliance will receive a pet photo opportunity with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

7 p.m. – Holiday Movie at Lake Eola Park – “The Santa Clause

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


Every week during the holiday season, a free movie will be played at the Walt Disney Amphitheater at Lake Eola Park. This week’s free holiday movie is “The Santa Clause,” starring Tim Allen.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

10 a.m. – Grandma Party Bazaar

Stardust Video and Coffee, 1842 Winter Park Road


The fifteenth annual Grandma Party Bazaar at Stardust Video and Coffee will feature vendors, interactive booths and live bands. This event will be open until sundown.

1 p.m. – Holiday Pop Swap Market

Dear Prudence Shop, 2912 Corrine Drive

The Lovely Boutique Market, 2906 Corrine Drive


Find unique gifts for family and friends among the vendors at the Holiday Pop Swap Market, which will feature vintage, vinyl and handcrafted products and several food trucks.


Friday, December 21, 2018

7 p.m. – Holiday Movie at Lake Eola Park – “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


Every week during the holiday season, a free movie will be played at the Walt Disney Amphitheater at Lake Eola Park. This week’s free holiday movie is “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,”starring Chevy Chase.


Saturday, December 22, 2018

7:30 p.m. – The Nutcracker, performed by the Russian Ballet Orlando

Walt Disney Amphitheater, Lake Eola Park


The Russian Ballet Orlando will perform Tchaikovsky’s arrangement of the Nutcracker live, featuring unforgettable characters, dazzling costumes, onstage blizzards and timeless choreography.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

11 a.m. – Florida Citrus Bowl Parade

Rosalind Avenue, between Central Avenue and Robinson Street


The Florida Citrus Parade brings together more than 3,000 participants in one of Central Florida’s longest running traditions. The parade, which has become one of the largest sports affiliated parades in the nation, will feature signature citrus floats, marching bands from across the county and family fun in downtown Orlando.


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