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The Lakeland Christmas Parade

UPDATE: 2020 Lakeland Christmas Parade Cancelled Due to COVID-19 Concerns

The Junior League of Greater Lakeland, the organizers of the Lakeland Christmas Parade, and the City of Lakeland have made a decision to cancel the 2020 Lakeland Christmas Parade due to the complications of COVID-19.  The organizing committee has obvious concerns regarding the pandemic and the unknowns of what impacts the virus may have going forward. 

Bob Donahay, Director of Parks & Recreation said, “Usually at this time the organizing committee is busy reviewing applications for Christmas Parade participants.  Most years, we have over 100 applications going into September and right now we have 10 applicants and no marching bands.”  He added, “It is important that we notify the public and those few parade participants that completed applications of the decision to cancel the event before they start spending significant funds on floats, decorations, and other parade accommodations.” 

City Manager Tony Delgado said, “This year would have marked the 40th year of the Lakeland Christmas Parade. The parade usually kicks-off the holiday season in Lakeland and it is unfortunate that this hallmark event has been cancelled. As you can imagine, it is extremely difficult to plan for a large-scale event during a global health crisis.”  He added, “Our hope is this all goes away and we can get back to the life we all enjoyed before the coronavirus.”

The City of Lakeland encourages the public to follow the CDC recommendations for social distancing and hygiene. The City of Lakeland has developed a dedicated webpage with a number of resources to help the community stay informed.  You can find this site at www.lakelandgov.net/covid19.  


The Junior League of Greater Lakeland and the City of Lakeland are proud to host the 39th annual Lakeland Christmas Parade! The parade will take place in Downtown Lakeland when it returns. A fireworks display over Lake Mirror at 7 PM will start the festivities!

The parade will leave the RP Funding Center at 7 PM 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!

The Christmas Parade is enjoyed by the whole community.  Please remember to keep sidewalks clear for individuals with wheelchairs, walkers and scooters.

More Info

Email ChristmasParade@jlgl.org or visit the Junior League of Greater Lakeland

  • Parade Map & Restroom Locations

    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.*  To request a PDF copy of the map, please email communications@lakelandgov.net.
    *Note: Map will not open in Internet Explorer. Please use an alternate browser (Chrome, Safari, etc.).


    The blue rectangles on the map are the locations of portalets.

    Map of the 2019 Lakeland Christmas Parade



  • *NEW* Bike Valet

    We are pleased to be partnering with Two Wheel Valet for the very first bike valet at the Lakeland Christmas Parade! Here's what you need to know:

    1. The main festivities occur from 4:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., but the Bike Valet staffed service will operate from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. to accommodate  early revelers!

    2. Bikes (NOT cars) can be check in in the Munn Park parking lot (see map). They paved paradise, and put in a bike valet lot!!

    3. Bicyclists will not generally be stopped at the barricade locations (see red bars on map).  Just in case, all bicyclists can advise the “barricade” monitor that they are destined for the Bike Valet in Munn Park lot.

    4. Crossing of the parade route (green line) will generally not be permitted after 6:00 p.m. 
  • Parking & Street Closures


    Street Closures

    Incremental road closures will begin as early as 3:30 PM on 12/5 due to enhanced safety measures. You should plan on all parade route-affiliated roads being closed by 6 PM (see parade route). 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 (US 98) 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.

    Interactive Downtown Lakeland Parking Map

    ADA/Accessible Parking

    Accessible parking will be available in the Rose St. parking lot for vehicles with a disabled parking permit. See the ADA Accessibility tab below for more info on the accessibile parade experience.

  • Chairs Along Parade Route

    *NEW* in 2019: No Chairs Until the Day of the Event

    Chairs may be placed along the parade route no earlier than December 5th, 2019All chairs, tape, tables, etc. placed out before December 5th will be removed and taken to Joker Marchant Stadium.


    On December 5th, if you choose to place your chairs along the parade route, 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


    The Christmas Parade is enjoyed by the whole community.  Please remember to keep sidewalks clear for individuals with wheelchairs, walkers and scooters.

    Wheelchair Accessible Viewing Areas

    Two wheelchair accessible viewing areas will be located at the intersection of Rose Street and Main Street, next to the Fire Station off S Lake Avenue and across the street, in front of the Rose Street parking lot.

    See Map

    ADA Parking

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

    Interactive Downtown Lakeland Parking Map

    ADA Restrooms

    Two accessible porta-toilets will be available, one on each side of Main Street at the Rose Street/Main Street intersection.


    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.

  • Food

    2019 Parade info will be updated as the parade date gets closer. Please check back!

    Food vendors will be stationed throughout Downtown Lakeland. Here are their locations:

    Munn Park (SE corner)

    Parking Lot M
    Corner Massachusetts Ave. & Cedar/Lake Mirror

    Future Dog Park
    Vacant lot just East of the old Lakeland Brewery building on Lake Mirror Drive

    Small Pavers Area
    Corner of Lake Mirror Drive and Lake Avenue - west side, adjacent to the Lakeland Fire Department

    Lake Mirror Center Parking Lot
    Lake Avenue

  • Watch from Home

    Can't make it to the parade in person? Watch live online and on cable. You will find the parade broadcast:

  • Floats

    As is custom, the parade lineup (which is top secret!) is not revealed to the public.

    Please contact the Junior League of Greater Lakeland for more information.

  • 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 christmasparade@jlgl.org or call 863.682.2112.

  • Parade Applications - Due September 14th

    Lakeland Christmas Parade applications are closed for 2019.
    See the 2019 application packet


Kevin Cook and Julie Adams Lakeland Christmas Parade 2016

Kevin Cook & Julie Adams, 2017 Lakeland Christmas Parade