These are a Few of our Favorite Things…
During the holiday season, most communities have special celebrations that are built around local customs and traditions. From tree-lighting ceremonies to caroling to parades, these events help bring residents together each year in a spirit of good cheer and fellowship.
Hendersonville is no exception to this trend. In fact, Christmastime in the City by the Lake is one of the busiest and most festive times each year. Throughout autumn, there is no shortage of fun holiday happenings that are sure to be enjoyed by all members of the family.
Many of the events are operated in conjunction with HolidayFest, a local community organization that plans, sponsors and promotes holiday-themed events. Along with coordinating the annual holiday event calendar, HolidayFest also raises thousands of dollars each year for multiple Sumner County charities.
To help you get the most out of this year’s holiday season, let’s take a look at some of our favorite December events.
Hendersonville Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony
The annual Hendersonville Christmas tree Lighting Ceremony celebrates the unveiling of the official city holiday tree. The multi-hour event features musical performances, a children’s play area, photo opportunities with holiday characters and a variety of food trucks. In addition, free horse-drawn carriage rides are available throughout the event.
Where: Memorial Park
When: Dec. 1, 3-7:30 p.m.
Hendersonville Christmas Parade
The annual Hendersonville Christmas Parade is a popular holiday event that attracts thousands of locals and visitors each year. Each year, the parade features nearly 100 entrants, including local dignitaries, floats, scout troops, musical performances and high school marching bands. In addition, the parade has a different theme each year. This year’s theme, “A Golden Celebration,” commemorates the 50th anniversary of Hendersonville.
All participants are reviewed by a panel of celebrity judges who select the best float, best performance and best overall entries in the parade.
Each year, the parade is led by a designated grand marshal who has been selected by the event organizers. The 2019 parade will feature two grand marshals, Charlene Tilton and her daughter Cherish Lee.
Where: West Main Street near Memorial Park
When: Dec. 8, 2:30-4:30 p.m.
Hendersonville Christmas 4 Kids Tour Bus Show and Shopping Spree
The annual Hendersonville Christmas 4 Kids Tour Bus Show and Shopping Spree is a popular event that has been benefiting local underprivileged children for over 25 years. The multiday occasion begins with two fundraising events: a concert and the celebrity bus tour, and culminates with the children’s shopping experience.
During the bus event, guests have the opportunity to tour approximately 50 buses owned by some of their favorite country music stars. In many cases, the artists will be on-hand to sign autographs for the fans who attend. The only cost for guests is a small per-person donation that is used to fund the children’s shopping event.
On the second day, 400 children from nearly 30 area schools will be picked up by tour buses and for a day of food, fun and shopping. Volunteer adult chaperones accompany the children at all times, from the bus ride to the final checkout of their shopping spree.
During the shopping event, each child receives a $150 allowance that they can spend however they wish. In addition, each child also receives a free winter coat.
Where: Hendersonville Walmart Supercenter
When: Dec. 16, 5-9 p.m., Tour Bus Show | Dec. 17, 5-9 p.m., Kids Shopping Event
Volunteer Information: Christmas4Kids.org
YMCA Frostbite 5K/10K and Polar Plunge
The YMCA Frostbite 5K/10K Races and Polar Plunge are held each year to help local runners get a jump-start on their fitness goals for the coming new year. The event features chip-timed 5K and 10K races, along with an untimed fun run.
After the races, adventurous individuals have the opportunity to participate in the Polar Plunge, which consists of leaping into the frigid water of the YMCA’s outside pool.
The annual Frostbite races and Polar Plunge events benefit several YMCA programs, including the Sumner County Family YMCA’s “Learn to Swim” program.
Where: Sumner County Family YMCA
When: Dec. 28, 8:30-11:15 a.m.
Lights on Luna
Lights on Luna is a computer-animated Christmas light display that is coordinated with a musical soundtrack. Each year, thousands of visitors drive by the display on Luna Lane to enjoy the sights and sounds of the holidays.
Along with the colorful lights, visitors are able to enhance their experience by listening to the synchronized music through their car radios.
On weekends, there are special visits by Santa and Mrs. Claus, who are sure to delight kids of all ages.
Where: 176 Luna Lane
When: Dec. 1-30
6-10 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday
6-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday
7:30-10 p.m. Wednesday and Sunday