It’s that time of year again and there’s no better reason to join us in Downtown Fort Wayne to light up your Holiday Season! HolidayFest returns on Wednesday, November 23rd with the “Night of Lights” where we join together to light up Downtown with Santa and His Reindeer, the Merry Christmas Wreath, Northern Lights, and many more. The evening wouldn’t be complete without the Ringing of the Bells by Downtown churches at 7:30pm and the Parkview Field Holiday Fireworks at 7:45pm.
Activities: The fun doesn’t stop with the lighting ceremonies as indoor and outdoor activities, for all ages, will take place throughout the late afternoon and evening. Warm up with Cocoa and Carols at the Allen County Courthouse. Listen to the smooth holiday sounds of Fernando Tarango and his Merry Band of Musicians for their holiday performance at the I&M Power Center Plaza. Enjoy the kickoffs of the Festival of Gingerbread and Festival of Trees. Participate in activities like Night of Lights at the Cathedral Bookstore, Santa’s Workshop at the Community Center or Random Fandom Button Making at the Allen County Public Library. Also this year, to celebrate their 60th anniversary Fort Wayne Ballet has a special surprise planned for Night of Lights attendees.
Downtown Holiday Window Decorating: We are excited to announce the return of the Downtown Holiday Window Decorating Contest. Take a holiday stroll and view the beautifully decorated windows. This year’s theme is “Joy to the World!” Relive old memories and create new ones as you enjoy the creativity and beauty that each window conveys. Nobody does the holidays like Downtown Fort Wayne!
HolidayFest all Season Long:
HolidayFest continues through the end of the year with performances, festivals, art events, Holly Trolley Shopping, and so much more. For a complete list of lighting ceremony activities as well as a comprehensive holiday calendar, visit www.HolidayFestDowntown.com.
HolidayFest, featuring the Night of Lights, is presented by your Downtown Improvement District and sponsored by PNC Bank, Fort Wayne Newspapers, Wane TV, Visit Fort Wayne, Hanning & Bean Enterprises Inc., Targeted Services P.C., Majic 95.1, and Fun 101.7.
Night of Lights Lighting Schedule:
5:30 pm – History Center Turret Lighting (Barr Street)
5:45 pm – Christ Child Festival Nativity Lighting (Ross Building on Main Street)
5:50 pm – Aunt Millie’s Northern Lights (Pearl Street)
5:55 pm – Community Center Santa’s Workshop Display (Main Street)
6:20 pm – Santa and His Reindeer at PNC (Main and Berry Streets)
7:00 pm – Wells Fargo Holiday Display and Indiana Michigan Power Merry Christmas Wreath (I&M Power Center Plaza at Calhoun and Wayne Streets)
7:15 pm – Botanical Conservatory & Embassy Theatre Displays (Jefferson Boulevard)
7:30 pm – Ringing of the Bells (Downtown Churches)
7:45 pm – Parkview Field Holiday Fireworks (Jefferson Boulevard)
|Lighting Night at the
302 East Berry
5:00pm – 9:00pm
Come and enjoy the History Center for the lighting of the Turret.
|Santa & Mrs. Claus
at 1st Source Bank
1st Source Bank
200 E Main St
4:00pm – 6:30 pm
Stop by for a treat and visit Mr. & Mrs. Claus
233 W Main St
Lighting at 5:55pm
Start your downtown celebration at the Community Center with free holiday activities for the kids. There will be crafts, refreshments and movies. Donate a new or gently used bear and enter a drawing to win a giant elf bear. Kids can shop for inexpensive holiday gifts ($3 or less) at the North Pole Stop-n-Shop while Mom and Dad can shop for hand crafted items in the Crafters Corner. Finally, check out the light display on the Community Center roof when we turn on the lights at 5:55pm.
|Wells Fargo Presents: Holiday Music with special guest, Fernando Tarango|
I&M Power Center Plaza
Calhoun & Wayne
5:00pm – 6:00pm & 6:30pm – 6:45 pm
Acclaimed vocalist, Fernando Tarango, and his merry band of musicians will lead us in a holiday sing-along to open up our evening’s festivities. The Wells Fargo Stagecoach and our own Jack the Dog will be on the square for photo opportunities, and a trip back in time to days of old – when everyone eagerly awaited the arrival of the Stagecoach bringing packages full of holiday magic for all.
|Aunt Millie’s Northern Lights|
Aunt Millie’s Bakeries
350 Pearl St
5:00pm – 6:30pm
Start your evening with Aunt Millie’s Carolers and spread some Christmas cheer. While you’re here, warm up with some free cider and sample Aunt Millie’s Cranberry Apple Swirl bread! Count down with us as we light the breathtaking display of “Aunt Millie’s Northern Lights” at 5:50pm.
|Random Fandom Button Making|
ACPL Teen Department
900 Library Plaza
5:00pm – 7:00pm
It’s Night of Lights in Fort Wayne. Stop by the Teen department on the 2nd floor of Main Library and celebrate by making wearable art. Limit 2 per person. Pokémon Go fans: we’ll provide Lure Modules on the two Pokestops on the west side of the building. Relax while restocking your items.
|Cathedral Books & Gifts|
Cathedral Books & Gifts
915 S Clinton St
5:00pm – 9:00pm
Free Hot Wassail & Cookies! Enjoy your refreshments while browsing our great selection of gifts like home décor, nativities, advent wreathes, ornaments, jewelry and much more! 20% off your entire purchase from 5:00pm-9:00pm. Call 260-399-1442 for more info.
|PNC Bank Santa & Reindeer Lighting|
110 W Berry St
5:30pm – 7:30pm
Get photos with Santa and his elves. Enjoy carols and a performance by the Voices of Unity choir while sipping hot cocoa from the Salvation Army’s Cantina and watch PNC light up Santa and his Reindeer at 6:28pm.
|Grand Wayne Convention Center’s Holiday Open House|
Grand Wayne Convention Center
120 W Jefferson Blvd
6:00pm – 8:00pm
FREE and open to the public. Enjoy complimentary cookies and punch, visit with Mrs. Claus watch the Faith in Motion Dancers and listen to Fort Wayne Phil’s Youth Concert Orchestra and Symphony. Look for the ACPL Children’s Department who will be onsite and the Grand Wayne with crafts for your little elves to create.
|Cocoa and Carols|
Allen County Courthouse
715 South Calhoun St
6:30pm – 7:30pm
Enjoy Cocoa and Carols in the Rotunda of the Allen County Courthouse, music provided by the Fort Wayne Children’s Choir.
|I&M’s Wreath Lighting on the Plaza|
I&M’s Wreath Lighting on the Plaza
110 E. Wayne Street
Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is proud to display and light The “Merry Christmas” wreath which made its debut on the original Wolf & Dessauer department store at the corner of Calhoun and Washington in 1937. In 2008, the wreath received a fresh coat of paint and all 8,500 light bulbs were replaced with energy efficient LED bulbs giving it a warmer, crisper glow. We hope you and your family members will join us as we celebrate the 29th year of sharing this community gem during this holiday season.
|The 12 Days of Christmas|
Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory
1100 South Calhoun Street
7:00pm – 9:00pm
$5/adult, $3 children age 3-17
Enjoy a free cookie and hot chocolate, meet Mrs. Claus, and get a free professional-quality photo with Santa. You can also meet two live reindeer that know all about the North Pole. The gardens are decorated for the holidays, indoors and out. This year, we have special guests from the Fort Wayne Ballet: dancing ladies and leaping lords can teach you a few dance moves and poses for photos. Be sure to participate in the Fort Wayne Downtown Lighting Ceremony either before or after your visit to our holiday garden and displays. Regular Conservatory admission fees apply: $5/adult, $3/child age 3-17. Conservatory members or volunteers and children ages 2 and under are admitted free. No reservations required. For more information, call (260) 427-6440. Sponsored by PBS 39 and WAJI Majic 95.1 FM.
|Festival of Trees Opening|
125 W Jefferson Blvd
6:00pm – 9:00pm
$8 adults, $4 Children (12 & under)
Beginning with the Night of Lights, the Embassy Festival of Trees is a featured stop in the city’s annual downtown lighting ceremony, offering the opening of the Harrison Street animated holiday windows and viewing of the trees. Founded in 1984, the Festival of Trees is a fundraising and community goodwill event that supports ongoing operational and restoration efforts for the Embassy Theatre Foundation, Inc.
|Ringing of the Bells|
Downtown Fort Wayne
Listen as you walk to watch the fireworks at Parkview Field and you will hear bells and carillons from the Allen County Public Library, Emmanuel Lutheran, First Presbyterian, First Wayne United Methodist, Plymouth Congregational, St John’s Lutheran, St Mary’s Catholic, Trinity English Lutheran, and Trinity Episcopal ring in unity marking the beginning of the Holidays Downtown!
|Parkview Field Holiday Fireworks|
1301 Ewing St
Parkview Field will cap off Downtown Fort Wayne’s Night of Lights with a fireworks show starting at 7:45pm.