Looking for sparkly lights and festive holiday parades? You’ve come to the right place! Watch the kids’ eyes get all aglow at these Christmas tree lightings and holiday parades in Huntsville and North Alabama.
For more holiday fun including all the places to hear holiday music, catch Santa, cavort with holiday cheerfulness and just plain get in the holiday spirit visit the main page of our comprehensive 2020 Holiday Happenings Guide sponsored by Galaxy of Lights at Huntsville Botanical Gardens.
ON THE GO? Keep all of our Holiday Guides and our full Event Calendar at your fingertips with our free Explore Huntsville app. It’s available on iTunes & Google Play and will help make your spirit bright!
November Parades & Lightings
Galaxy of Lights
Celebrate the 25-year tradition that is Galaxy of Lights. Explore 2.5 miles of magnificent light displays weaving together holiday themes, classic characters, and scenes from our natural world. Galaxy of Lights’ 25th Anniversary Season will look just a little bit different this year as we commit to our community’s health and safety. But you can expect to be dazzled, just as you always have. We will once again offer both walk-through and drive-through experiences. New this year: Tickets for Walking Nights must be pre-purchased for a designated date and entry time.
Walking Nights: Nov. 13-25 | Dog Walking Nights on Nov. 16, 17, & 23 | 5:15-8:30PM (last admission)
Driving Nights: Nov. 27 – Jan. 2 | 5:30-9PM (last admission)
Location: Huntsville Botanical Gardens (map)
Walking Nights Cost: Adults $10-$15 members/$12-$17 non-members | Children ages 3-15 $5-10 members/$6-$11 nonmembers | Dogs $3
Driving Nights Cost: Per car: $18-$30 members/$23-$30 non-members/$20-$25 military
More Info: General Info
RCM Review Walking Nights | RCM Review Driving Nights
The Rocket City Christmas Spectacular at Toyota Field
Hundreds of thousands of lights will be on display for all to safely enjoy this holiday season. Guests can drive through the magical “Santa’s Mountain” themed light show, where visitors will be able to simply tune into their vehicle’s radio and experience a spectacular synchronization of music and lights. Tickets can be purchased online in advance at reserve.imclutch.com/trash-pandas, or on the day of the event – credit cards and mobile pay are encouraged. Guests can also park their car after driving through the lights and enter the winter wonderland within the stadium at no additional cost. Inside the ballpark will feature numerous holiday activities for all ages, including hot chocolate stations, cookie decorating, s’mores making, character visits, shopping, and more! CDC and Madison County health guidelines will be followed at the Rocket City Christmas Spectacular.
Christmas in the Park – Arab
Arab City Park is a must-see during the holiday season. Featuring more than 1 million lights, the park will be ablaze with the magic and beauty of Christmas. The 26th Annual Christmas in the Park “Lighting Ceremony” begins at exactly 6 pm on November 27th, and there aren’t enough words to describe it. It’s one of the best things you’ll do all year. AHS Band Director Ty Parker and the AHS Jazz Band bring the holiday feels with jazzy renditions of everyone’s holiday faves, and carolers wander along the paths adding unexpected moments of bliss with their acapella harmonies.
Dates/Times: Tree lighting ceremony is Nov. 27th at 6PM | Park is open dusk through 9 p.m. through Dec. 31
Location: Arab Historic Village (map)
Cost: FREE ($6 admission to Santa in the Park)
More Info: Website | Facebook
A local favorite, Huntsville’s Tinsel Trail is a display of live Christmas trees in Downtown Huntsville during the month of December. An anticipated 300 will trees decorate Big Spring Park for the holiday season. This includes large flagship trees and the City of Huntsville tree, and each tree is sponsored by a local corporation, group or family, and decorated by its sponsor. Trees can have themes that match the company’s mission, or sometimes they’re just totally unique! The Tinsel Trail is open to the public daily until midnight. Trees are lit from dusk until midnight each night.
Bridge Street Holiday Light Show
New this holiday season, we will be spreading cheer through holiday themed laser light shows. Light shows will occur in two separate locations – the bridge near the Belk Courtyard and the Christmas tree near Cinemark. Showtimes listed below will be the start times for the 10-minute laser light show.
Athens North Pole Stroll
Athens North Pole Stroll offers an amazing memory-making experience for the whole family with Christmas trees bedecked twinkling lights and creative designs. Set in Athens’ historic Big Spring Memorial Park, it’s perfect for strolling, photos, and admiring the Christmas Cheer. This stroll at-your-own-pace, open-air December-long event is open to everyone — especially as night falls and each tree begins to sparkle and glimmer with fairy lights.
December Parades & Lightings
Arab Christmas Parade
Update: This parade has been cancelled due to weather & Covid-19. Don’t miss the annual small town Arab Christmas parade on Downtown Main Street! As always, Santa will make his appearance at the end of the parade!
Christmas in Cullman Parade and Tree Lighting Ceremony
Mix 96.9 – Von Braun Center Christmas Fireworks Spectacular
Due to COVID-19 concerns, the 2020 Huntsville Christmas Parade has cancelled the parade and replaced with a socially distanced fireworks show. Mix 96.9 and the Von Braun Center are putting together a free Christmas Fireworks Spectacular on Friday, December 4, 2020 in the parking lot of Joe W. Davis Stadium for families in Huntsville and the surrounding areas. Parking will begin at 6:00 PM with the show starting at 7:00 PM. The fireworks will be synchronized to music on Mix 96.9 and will last for 20 minutes. Car will be parked with one spot between on another for social distancing. Because of the social distance, chairs, blankets and snacks are encouraged. Save the date to break out the lawn chairs, hot chocolate, and cookies! If you want to help others while enjoying the show, they will be taking blanket donations for Comfort Care Hospice.
Ardmore’s Tinsel Trail
The Ardmore Tinsel Trail is held annually during the month of December in Ardmore Alabama. Hosted by the Greater Ardmore Chamber of Commerce, the event is held in the park next to the Bryan House on 1st Avenue and features brightly decorated Christmas Trees hosted by local businesses, organizations, and individuals.
Dates/Times: Tree Lighting Ceremony Dec. 4 from 5:30-7PM | Trees on display throughout December
Location: The Bryant House at Ardmore Ave. & 1st St, Ardmore (map)
More Info: Website | Facebook
Monroeville Christmas Parade
Monroeville’s Annual Christmas Parade will be held on December 5th, 2020 at 10:00 A.M. The parade will follow the traditional parade route through historic downtown Monroeville and will feature a 2020 theme of “Christmas in Toyland.” This family fun event brings together the community to help kick off the Christmas Season.
Priceville’s Sheila Smith Christmas Parade
The Town of Priceville Park and Recreation’s Annual Shelia Smith Christmas Parade is set for Saturday, December 7 at 2 P.M. with a rain date of December 14. Floats will be judged and cash prizes will be given to 1st through 3rd place winners. Santa arrives at the end of the parade!
Christmas Tree Lighting at Cove Church
Join us for an old-fashioned community tree lighting! We’ll kick off the season with caroling, crafts and refreshments. At 5:15, we’ll light the tree and then welcome a special storyteller who’ll share an inspiring Christmas tale. Be sure to dress for the weather and wear your mask during this outdoor event.
Scottsboro Christmas Parade
Enchanted Forest of Decatur
Guntersville Christmas Parade
It’s that time of year! Help us celebrate Christmas by joining us for the Guntersville Christmas Parade on Friday, December 6. The parade begins at 6PM and travels through downtown Guntersville. The route will begin at L.B. Wallace Drive & Highway 431 then continue south down Gunter Avenue and end in the area of Highway 69 & Highway 431.
New Hope Christmas Parade
Visit small town New Hope for their Annual Christmas Parade! The New Hope Christmas Parade is December 12th at 6pm.
45th Annual Parade of Lights at Joe Wheeler State Park
The Parade of Lights is a fun, festive family event that features more than a dozen yachts, pontoons and other watercraft all decorated creatively with lights for the holidays. Bring your own hot chocolate to watch the boats float by from the banks outside The Lodge at Joe Wheeler State Park. Many families choose to rent a lodge room and watch from inside their room; all 75 lodge rooms have balconies that over look the lake and offer a great view for the parade!
Decatur’s 2020 Spectacle of Lights
The Decatur Jaycees are excited to host Decatur’s first reverse parade, Spectacle of Lights, in place of its annual holiday parade. The Spectacle of Lights reverse parade will allow the community to participate in the long-standing tradition of celebrating the holiday season together while continuing to give back to the community. The Decatur Jaycees are challenging all Decatur businesses, organizations, churches, schools, etc. to support their community by putting on their best Christmas displays for four nights. Each participating location will receive a location pin on Decatur Downtown Redevelopment Authority’s interactive map, allowing community members to plan their very own “parade route” to view participant’s lights and décor.
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Rocket City Mom is a website about raising children in and around Huntsville, Alabama. Started in late 2010 by a local mom and newcomer to Huntsville, Rocket City Mom has grown into a thriving community of local parents and now boasts a staff of four, thirteen regular contributors, and tens of thousands of Tennessee Valley readers making it the #1 Parenting Resource in North Alabama.