Santa Claus is coming to town during the annual Light up the Lake Christmas Celebration on Saturday, December 7. This year’s event will mark the City’s first lighted night parade through historic downtown Lake Charles. Beginning at 6:30 p.m., local groups will join Santa for a festive journey from Pine Street, south on Ryan, concluding at 7th Street. Lake Charles Toyota/Scion is the official sponsor of this year’s street parade.

After the parade, the fun will move to the Lake Charles Civic Center as residents gather around the front lawn for a lighting ceremony led by Mayor Nic Hunter. Local girl scouts groups and the Barbe High String Orchestra will entertain the crowd with everyone’s favorite Christmas carols. At 7:30 p.m., Mayor Hunter will flip the switch to light up the tree as well as the many brilliant ornaments positioned at the Civic Center entrance. 

Captains are called upon to round up the crew for the annual lighted boat parade at 8:15 p.m.  An assortment of boats reflecting the spirit of the season will parade past spectators along the Lakefront Promenade. Awards and prizes will be given for the best decorated boats 35 ft. & under and 36 ft. & over. Categories include first through third place, best of show and best crew.  

At 8:45 p.m. tune into KBYS 88.3 FM McNeese Radio for the simulcast music as the fireworks extravaganza will light up the lake.  Food vendors will be available on the lakefront this evening.

Two weeks later on December 21, Santa's Workshop will take place from 12 to 3 p.m. in the Civic Center Coliseum. Thanks to the support of Entergy, kids are invited to join in the reindeer games with prizes and gifts as well as arts & crafts, food, activities, storytelling, music and much more. Concessions will be sold. Movies with the Mayor (featuring Mickey’s Christmas Carol) will follow in Rosa Hart Theater at 3:30 p.m. The event is free, but seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

All events are free for attendees as well as participants. Additional support is provided by a grant from the Southwest Louisiana Convention and Visitors Bureau. For entry forms or more information, please contact the City of Lake Charles at 337-491-9159,                   

 Click the links below for rules and entry forms.

Street Parade Entry Form

Lighted Boat Parade Entry Form