Uncover Sarasota’s Spectacular Holiday Celebrations with Lisa McBride and the Sarasota Neighborhood Experts! Embrace the enchantment of the season as Sarasota transforms into a festive wonderland, alive with joyous events and magical experiences. From lively parades to mesmerizing light displays, heartwarming concerts, and delightful carnivals, our city radiates with the spirit of the holidays. Join us on an unforgettable journey through Sarasota’s most captivating festivities
- When: December 2, 2023
- Where: Main Street, Downtown, Sarasota, FL
- Admission: sarasotaholidayparade.com
Details: Mark your calendars for December 2, 2023, as Main Street becomes the vibrant stage for the iconic 27th Annual Sarasota Holiday Parade! This year’s theme, ‘Holidays Around The World,’ promises an exhilarating showcase of lively floats and joyful music. Join us for a heartwarming celebration embracing global traditions. For more details and admission, visit sarasotaholidayparade.com and prepare for a dazzling experience!
- When: Dec 2 – Jan 2
- Where: University Town Center, 210 North Cattlemen Road
- Info: utcsarasota.com/event/holidays-at-utc
Experience festive fun at UTC during the Holidays!
For more details and an area map showing all activities, click here!
- Spectacular Nightly Light Shows along Cattlemen Rd | 6:30-9:30 PM, every 30 mins.
- The Rink at UTC: Skate | Nov 22 – Jan 1
- Movies Under the Stars: Watch classic films (near Ford’s Garage) | Fri & Sat, 7 PM
- Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides: Ride around UTC | Thursdays-Sundays | 6 PM – 10 PM.
- Fireworks: lighting up the night sky! | Saturdays at 9 PM
- Brave New Wonderland: An Immersive Holiday Spectacular | Nov 18 – Dec 31
- Holiday Night Market: Shop 40+ vendors | Nov 16 & Dec 21 | 6:30– 9:30 PM at The Green.
- Festival of Trees: Discover 40 decorated trees at The Mal | Dec 1 – 17
- Gingerbread Festival: 100+ houses at The West District | Dec 1 – 10, 6:30– 9:30 PM.
- Festive Sweets & Holiday Eats: Enjoy seasonal treats at 80+ eateries!
- Where: Van Wezel
- Contact: (941) 263-6799 | vanwezel.org
Christmas Carol Trolley: Letters To Santa
- Departure Point: 1826 4th Street, Downtown, Sarasota
- When: Dec. 4-29, *check for availability
- Tickets: Child $29.99, Adult (12+) $49.99 | * Includes complimentary drinks for kids & beer/wine for adults
Enjoy a 90-minute festive downtown music and lights tour on “Dolly The Trolley.” Sing carols, hear holiday stories, and tour Sarasota’s downtown lights with a lively cast. Perfect for the whole family; holiday attire encouraged! Free parking available.
- Where: West District at UTC (between Old Navy and ULTA Beauty stores)
- When: Dec 1-10 | 6:30 – 9:30 pm daily
Experience a holiday wonderland showcasing over 150 creatively designed gingerbread houses by local schools, youth groups, businesses, and nonprofits in a new, larger venue at UTC’s West District.
- Where: Sarasota’s Maries Selby Gardens
- When: Dec 8-10, 12-23, 26-30, 2023; Jan 1-3, 2024 | Early Entry: 5:30 – 9 p.m. General Entry: 6:30 – 9 p.m.
- Tickets: Purchase on the Lights in Bloom® website. Advance purchase is recommended.
Over two million lights adorn the gardens and pathways of Downtown Sarasota’s Selby Gardens. This acclaimed holiday light show will be back this December!
- Where: Marina Jack / Sarasota Bayfront 2 Marina Plaza, Sarasota, FL 34236
- When: Dec 09, 2023
- Contact: 941-487-7904 [email protected]
- Visit Website Get Tickets
Witness a stunning display of illuminated boats cruising through Sarasota Bay.
Witness the timeless story of Clara and her adventures with The Nutcracker! at the historic Sarasota Opera House.
Lakewood Ranch is brimming with holiday cheer! Get ready to jingle all the way down Main Street with a festive calendar packed full of joyful celebrations. From tree lighting to Santa sightings, the season’s spirit is alive and waiting for you!
- Where: Main Street, Lakewood Ranch
12/1: MUSIC ON MAIN/HOLDAY TREE LIGHTING 5:30PM-9PM
12/2: BREAKFAST W/ SANTA AT REMY’S ON MAIN 9AM-11AM
12/2: HOLDAY OF THE ARTS FESTIVAL 10AM-5PM
12/3: HOLDAY OF THE ARTS FESTIVAL 10AM-5PM
12/5: SANTA STRELUNG 6:30PM-8:30PM
12/7: CHANUKAH CELEBRATION 6PM-8PM
12/9: BREAKFAST W/ SANTA AT GROVE 9AM-11AM
12/10: BREAKFAST W/ SANTA AT GROVE 9AM-11AM
12/12: SANTA STRELUNG 6:30PM-8:30PM
12/14: SANTA STRELUNG 6:30PM-8:30PM
12/15: JINGLE RUN 5K 6PM-10PM
12/16: BRUNCH W/ SANTA AT MCGRATH’S 11AM-2PM
12/16: MAIN STREET SMALL BUSINESS MARKET 10AM-2PM
12/17: BREAKFAST W/ SANTA AT ED’S TAVERN 9AM-11AM
12/19: SANTA STRELUNG 6:30PM-8:30PM
12/21: SANTA STRELUNG 6:30PM-8:30PM
12/23: CHRISTMAS ON MAIN CELEBRATION 4PM-8PM
Visit www.LWRMainStreet.com for more details.
“Joyful! Joyful!” Christmas Show by Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
- Where: Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, 1012 N. Orange Ave., Sarasota, FL
- When: Performances run Wed, Nov 29, 2023 – Sat, Dec 30, 2023| Evenings 7:30 PM | Matinees 2:00 PM
Celebrate the season with high-spirited, uplifting songs as only Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe’s singers, dancers and musicians can perform them! A blend of new takes on traditional holiday, gospel-infused and pop songs, the production offers a joyful, soulful twist on your favorite seasonal music.
- Where: Waterside Park.
- When: Fri, Dec 15th, 6- 9 PM
Enjoy a free, family-friendly outdoor movie screening of “The Santa Clause” at Waterside Park. Showtimes begin around 7 PM. Seating is first-come, first-served; bring blankets or lawn chairs. Cotton candy and popcorn are provided by Grace Community Church. *Santa will be present from 6 PM to 8 PM for holiday cheer.
- Where: 8330 Lakewood Ranch Blvd, Lakewood Ranch, FL
- When: Friday, December 15, 2023
About: Enjoy the largest holiday 5K Run/Walk in Sarasota and Manatee counties.Join Publix for the 12th Annual Jingle Run, a festive 5K run/walk supports scholarship opportunities Big Bill Foundation and Lakewood Ranch Medical Center Foundation. Participants receive a custom 2023 medal and bib number.
- Where: The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota – 1111 Ritz-Carlton Drive, Sarasota, FL
- When: Dec 16th or 23rd, 2023, 10:00 – 11:30 AM
- Reservations: 941.309.2401 or [email protected] specifying your preferred date.
- Cost: $90++ per party of 4, including one gingerbread house (exclusive of gratuity and tax).
After donning chef’s hats and aprons, decorate a festive gingerbread house guided by The Ritz-Carlton’s pastry team. Light refreshments will be served.
- Where: Busch Gardens, Tampa
- When: November 11 – January 7, 2024 | Park open to park close
- Cost: Included with Park Admission.
Experience holiday cheer with family and friends at Tampa’s festive event. Enjoy animal encounters, thrilling rides, holiday-inspired culinary delights, shows like Christmas on Ice, twinkling lights, dazzling fireworks, and meet Santa and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer! The holidays come to life at Busch Gardens® Christmas Town™, the park’s award-winning holiday event.
- Where: Art Ovation Hotel, Autograph Collection – 1255 North Palm Avenue Sarasota, FL 34236
- When: Tues Dec 19, 7:00 – 8:30 PM
- More Info | Tickets: $55.00
Unwind and relax by painting beautiful hand-painted wine glasses at the Art Ovation Hotel. Learn techniques and enjoy step-by-step guidance from the instructor. All supplies provided; take home your finished artwork and newfound skills!
Experience an improvised holiday musical with no scripts or musical scores, featuring spontaneous musical numbers, drama, and choreography by a talented ensemble of improvisers.
- Where: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, FL
- When: Nov 24 – Dec 31, 2023
- Tickets: $34 for adults and $25 for juniors | More Info
Embark on an immersive adventure at Enchant! Wander the light maze, artisan vendors in a festive Village, and an enchanting ice skating trail. Additionally, Explore Reindeer Games, find Santa’s magic bells, and enjoy holiday treats while skating through a dazzling forest of lights.
- Where: Main Street, Lakewood Ranch, FL
- When: Saturday, December 23rd, 2023 | 4- 8 PM
You’re invited to Christmas on Main! Bring your family to Lakewood Ranch Main Street on December 23 from 4-8pm for the biggest Christmas party in town. Come celebrate the season with free games, rides, photo booths and attractions for the whole family and a special candlelight service. Santa himself will even be there!
4-7 pm: Free Rides and Games
7-8pm: Christmas Candlelight Service
New Year’s Eve Rooftop Soiree
- Where: The Westin Sarasota, 100 Marina View Drive, Sarasota, FL 34236
- When: Dec 31, 2021, 9:00 PM – Jan 1, 2024, 1:00 AM
- Dinner Reseravations at EVOQ: call 941-260-8255
- Tickets $120 *includes rooftop access from 9 PM to 1 AM with a midnight champagne toast
Join the 21+ rooftop celebration with live DJ, dance floor, party favors, and a midnight champagne toast overlooking downtown Sarasota and Sarasota Bay. Valet parking available; However, Fireworks view not guaranteed.
- Where: Lemon Avenue & Main Street, Sarasota
- When: December 31, 1 PM – 1 AM
- Admission: FREE
- Live music kicks off at 8:30 PM
Get ready for the ultimate New Year’s Eve bash at Sarasota’s iconic Pineapple Drop Block Party! Downtown Sarasota becomes electric as midnight approaches, with live music, fireworks, and an unforgettable celebration at Lemon Avenue and Main Street. Therefore, It’s a spectacular evening you won’t want to miss!
- Where: Selby Five Points Park 1 Central Ave Sarasota, FL 34236 Directions
- When: Sun, Dec 31 | 10:00 AM – 1:00 AM
- More Info: call 866-666-3247 or visit DreamLandAmusements.com.
- Buy Tickets Click here to view Midway Video
Gear up to immerse yourself in Sarasota’s Spectacular Holiday Celebrations with Lisa McBride and the Sarasota Neighborhood Experts! Stay in the loop for all the festive fun by following us on YouTube, TikTok, and IG. Join the excitement, share the cheer, and make this holiday season in Sarasota one for the books! Follow, like, and engage with us to unwrap the joy of these extraordinary events. Let’s create unforgettable memories together!