Downtown Lafayette will become the perfect destination for lovers of Christmas this December. In an effort to spread seasonal joy throughout the Acadiana region, DLU has committed to creating a month-long series of family-friendly holiday events in Downtown Lafayette. The seasonal celebration, called “A Merry & Bright Downtown Christmas” will feature a Christmas tree decorating contest, multiple concerts, a competition for best holiday window display, pictures with Santa, horse-drawn carriage rides, and a “North Pole” installation in Parc International—all taking place throughout the month of December.
Downtown Lafayette Unlimited, the organization known for producing the Downtown Alive! Friday night concert series, has made a commitment to creating more family-friendly events in Downtown Lafayette. A Merry & Bright Downtown Christmas will join events like Movies in the Parc, the Downtown Sno-Ball Festival, and the DTA! Kids Zone as the next DLU project to provide opportunities for the whole family to enjoy all that Downtown Lafayette has to offer.
“We are extremely excited to announce that DLU will contribute significant time, effort, and money towards providing another one-of-a-kind family-friendly experience,” said Jason Matt, President of Downtown Lafayette Unlimited. “Christmas is a wonderful season that brings together family and friends who spread cheer and give thanks for the many blessings we have. Thanks to continued support for Downtown by our community, through attending fundraisers like Downtown Alive!, it is now possible for us to make Downtown Lafayette your Christmas destination.”
In order to make Downtown Lafayette a destination for Christmas, DLU is working to transform the city center into a beacon of holiday cheer. Parc International will be converted into the “North Pole of Downtown,” with giant decorations, string lights, a 24-foot-tall Christmas tree, and larger-than-life ornaments big enough to walk through. Many of the shops and businesses of Downtown will convert their storefronts into a “Window Wonderland” featuring installations curated by local artists. And a grove of live Christmas trees—decorated by families, business, and organizations from throughout Acadiana—will fill Parc International.
“We are ending 2019 with another first: Downtown Lafayette becoming a Christmas destination,” said Maureen Dugas Foster, Director of Downtown Lafayette Unlimited. “I’m particularly excited about the Christmas Tree Extravaganza, because we are bringing together a diverse array of businesses, organizations, and community members who will each aid in the creation of a magical holiday wonderland. Downtown is the heart of our city and our region and an events like the Extravaganza offer an opportunity for our community to truly come together.”
Merry & Bright Downtown Christmas begins with three events on the weekend of December 6-8. Things kick-off on Friday, December 6th, with a free concert called, “Christmas with the Boss” which will feature music by Keith Frank and The Pine Leaf Boys in addition to the lighting of the official Christmas tree of Lafayette and an opportunity to meet and take photos with Santa Claus.
The Christmas Tree Extravaganza begins on Saturday, December 7th. The Extravaganza is a friendly Christmas tree decorating competition open to all businesses, organizations, families, and creative individuals throughout Acadiana. Participants will decorate trees to display throughout the holiday season in a grove at Parc International. Visitors to the Parc can vote on their favorite tree online and winners of the competition will be announced in a grand finale event on December 21st. Those interested in participating in the Extravaganza can find more information on the Extravaganza Kick-Off page.
The annual Sonic Christmas Parade rolls through Downtown on Sunday, December 8th. The parade is held annually and marks the “official” arrival of Santa in Lafayette. Santa will be on a float on the parade and children are encouraged to bring their letters for Santa to mail to the North Pole. After the parade, DLU will host an after-party at Parc International with live music, drinks, hot cocoa, and pictures with Santa.
Christmas with the Boss, the Christmas Tree Extravaganza, and the Sonic Christmas Parade are just the first three events in a month-long season of holiday activities in Downtown Lafayette. Other events include a CycleBar Tacky Sweater Pop-Up, the 2nd annual Downtown Candlelight Christmas concert, an ArtWalk Christmas art market, a Santa Pub Crawl, a special Christmas edition of Movies in the Parc, and many more. The list below represents each event that Downtown Lafayette Unlimited will host or partner to produce.
Merry & Bright Downtown Christmas Events
“North Pole of Downtown” Installation
December 6 – 21 | Parc International
Christmas Tree Extravaganza
December 7 – 21 | Parc International
Downtown Window Wonderland
November 29 – January 4 | Jefferson Street + various locations Downtown
Christmas with the Boss
Friday, December 6 | 5:00 – 9:00 PM | Parc International
Christmas Tree Extravaganza Kick-Off
Saturday, December 7 | Parc International | 4:00 – 9:00 PM
Sonic Christmas Parade
Sunday, December 8 | Jefferson Street | 1:00 PM
Sonic Christmas Parade After-Party
Sunday, December 8 | Parc International | 2:00 – 5:00 PM
Pictures with Santa
Friday, December 6 | Parc International | 5:00 – 9:00 PM
Saturday, December 7 | Parc International | 4:00 – 8:30 PM
Sunday, December 8 | Parc International | 2:00 – 5:00 PM
Wednesday, December 11 | Parc International | 5:00 – 8:30 PM
Saturday, December 14 | Parc International | 4:00 – 8:30 PM
Wednesday, December 18 | Parc International | 5:00 – 8:30 PM
Saturday, December 21 | Parc International | 4:00 – 6:00 PM
ArtWalk Holiday Market
Saturday, December 14 | Parc International | 4:00 – 9:00 PM
Tacky Sweater CycleBar Pop-Up
Sunday, December 15 | Parc International | 9:00 AM
Downtown Candlelight Christmas
Thursday, December 19 | Parc International | 6:00 – 7:00 PM
Christmas Tree Extravaganza Finale (Winner Announced)
Saturday, December 21 | Parc International | 4:00 – 9:00 PM
Movies in the Parc Christmas Edition
Saturday, December 21 | Parc International | 6:00 – 9:00 PM
All Merry & Bright events and other Christmas events and activities hosted in Downtown will be listed on the Downtown Lafayette online events calendar.