There’s something so magical about bright, twinkling decorations for the holidays, especially when they light up Main Streets pretty much from coast to coast.
We’ve got a few favorites from this year’s selection of Main Streets Across America, which we recognized as we were celebrating the heart of our communities.
This truly is a time of year when our downtowns shine, literally and figuratively.
So, in that spirit of the season, we thought we’d share just some of the celebrations that caught our attention.
- Parkville, Missouri, for example, already held its Christmas on the River celebration, including holiday fireworks.
- Lights of the Ozarks is a holiday highlight in Fayetteville, Arkansas, that features carriages and pony rides and an unbelievable display of lights and festivities.
- Rockland, Maine, is true to its history as a seaport with its Festival of Lights that’s anchored, if you will, with its lighted Christmas tree built out of lobster traps. And Santa even arrived at this year’s lighting ceremony by Coast Guard boat, another tradition.
- The tradition in Topeka, Kansas, is The Miracle on Kansas Avenue where a parade of lighted entries ranging from walkers to marching bands to bicycles on Thanksgiving weekend led to the annual tree lighting.
- There’s a Miracle on 1st Street, too. That’s where LaSalle, Illinois, hosts breakfast with Santa, Santa’s workshop and carriage and fire truck rides.
- Missoula, Montana, enjoys a holiday parade, too, with its Parade of Lights down Higgins Avenue.
- Pretty much all of downtown Franklin, Tennessee, seems to time-travel to the 19th century for the Dickens of a Christmas festival. There’s music and dancers, along with characters from Dickens novels, all leading to a visit to a Victorian Father and Mother Christmas.
- Richmond, California, relies on literature at the holidays, too. The Downtown Holiday Festival is themed around performances of a “Richmond Nutcracker” in addition to lights and caroling.
- And the holidays light up on Festive Fridays when Main Street in Carmel, Indiana, is brightened with longer hours at shops and special prizes and music.
We know there are tons of other fun holiday events in downtowns around the country. This is a great time to go out enjoy them and celebrate what makes the heart of our communities so special.
The Coast Guard arrives at the Festival of Lights in Rockland, Maine. Photo courtesy of Rockland Downtown.
Carolers sing at the Dickens of a Christmas festival in Franklin, Tennessee. This photo and photo at top by Robin Hood courtesy of The Heritage Foundation of Franklin & Williamson County.