The Lakeland Christmas Parade
A Storybook Christmas

NOTE: This page has not yet been fully updated for the 2018 parade.

The 2018 Lakeland Christmas Parade: A Night at the North Pole, sponsored by the Junior League of Greater Lakeland, takes place on Thursday, December 6th, 2018 in Downtown Lakeland at 7 PM. 

The parade will leave the RP Funding Center and make its way down Lemon Street twisting and turning through Downtown Lakeland. Be sure to keep an eye out for our very special guests...Santa & Mrs. Claus!

A fireworks display over Lake Mirror at 7 PM will start the festivities.

More Info from JLGL

  • Parade Applications - Due September 14th

    Lakeland Christmas Parade applications are due on September 14th, 2018.
    Download your application packet at

    The theme this year is “A Storybook Christmas” and it is our sincere hope that you will join us in inspiring the imaginations of children and promoting the joy of reading by decorating your float in the theme of your favorite children’s story. In true holiday spirit, we ask that you enhance your story with festive cheer. For example, if your book is Winnie the Pooh oriented, we would hope to see Pooh Bear with a Santa hat and your float still adorned with twinkling lights, a wreath, or some other form of holiday cheer.

    Please review the information available on the site above carefully as all floats are accepted for participation based on the compliance with the provided rules, completion of the application in full, and on the basis of the unit’s quality and contribution to the parade. Awards will be presented to outstanding participants at the Lakeland City Commission meeting in December.

  • Parade Map & Restroom Locations

    We will update with this year's map as soon as it becomes available.

    The Christmas Parade will kick off at the RP Funding center, winding its way through Downtown Lakeland, around Lake Mirror and down Lemon Street. 

    Click the map for a larger view of the parade route.  


    The small squares on the map are the locations of portajons. 

    2018 Lakeland Christmas Parade Map

  • Parking & Street Closures

    Not yet updated for 2018.

    Street Closures

    Incremental roads closures will begin as early as 4 PM on 12/6 due to enhanced safety measures. You should plan on all parade route-affiliated roads being closed by 6 PM. Officers will be staged at locations along the route to assist with traffic. Closures will be clearly marked and directional signage will be in place.

    Please allow extra time to arrive early or take alternate routes such as Bartow Highway and Harden Boulevard if you are simply trying to get from one side of town to the other.

    Public Parking

    Public Parking is available in Downtown Lakeland on open, non-parade-route streets, in public lots and parking garages.

    Downtown Lakeland Parking Map (PDF)

    ADA Parking

    Accessible parking will be available in the Rose St. parking lot for vehicles with a disabled parking permit. 

  • Chairs Along Parade Route

    You may place chairs along the parade route no earlier than December 5th, 2017. 


    Please do not block sidewalks, entrances, or ADA ramps or place chairs in "Wheelchair Accessible" seating areas. Chairs placed in these areas will be moved out of the way. Please be respectful and do not place excessive amounts of chairs along the route.

    Theft & Lost Chairs

    The City of Lakeland is not responsible for any lost, misplaced, or stolen chairs.

  • ADA Accessibility

    Not yet updated for 2018.

    ADA Seating

    Wheelchair accessible seating will be in the Rose Street parking lot, next to the Fire Station off of S Lake Avenue. 

    ADA Parking

    Accessible parking will be available in the Rose Street parking lot for vehicles with a disabled parking permit.

    ADA Restrooms

    An accessible porta-toilet will be available at the Rose Street parking lot. 


    Just as with the rest of the parade route, the wheelchair accessible seating area and parking will be first come- first served.

    See the Parade Map & Restroom Locations tab for more information.

  • Snapchat & Facebook Geofilters

    Lakeland Christmas Parade Geofilter 2017

    This year, we will have special Lakeland Christmas Parade Snapchat and Facebook Geofilters for the parade!


    Our Snapchat geofilter will go live around the parade route from 4 - 10 PM.

    Add the City of Lakeland on Snapchat


    To use the Facebook event filter, visit the official Lakeland Christmas Parade: A Storybook Christmas event page on your Facebook app and click "Use Camera Effect". 

    Share Your Photos!

    Be sure to send us your photos in a private message on Facebook or at and use the hashtag #LKLDchristmasparade during the event!

  • Floats

    Not yet updated for 2018.

  • Duration

    The Lakeland Christmas Parade begins at 7 PM at the RP Funding Center and typically lasts 1.5 - 2 hours.  

  • More Info/Questions

    Questions about the Christmas Parade?

    Email the Junior League of Greater Lakeland at or call 863.682.2112.

Kevin Cook and Julie Adams Lakeland Christmas Parade 2016

Kevin Cook & Julie Adams, 2016 Lakeland Christmas Parade