The Joliet City Center Partnership (CCP) is proud to host the Light up the Holidays Festival Parade, sponsored by the University of Saint Francis, in Downtown Joliet. This event is held on Friday, November 25th with free activities starting as early at 10 a.m. and culminating in the annual parade at 5:30 p.m. Sponsors of these activities include University of St. Francis, City of Joliet, Midland States Bank, Old National Bank, Ascension – St. Josephs Hospital, Darcy Motors, First Secure Bank, Busey Bank, Harrah’s Joliet Casino and Hotel, and the Arkas Restaurant Group.
The day begins with the new North Pole Christmas Market at the Renaissance Center from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. where shoppers can find unique and personalized Christmas gifts. Kids and adults alike will enjoy photos with characters from their favorite movies throughout the day at both the Renaissance Center and the Joliet Area Historical Museum. The new North Pole Park, located across from the Rialto Square Theatre, will provide free activities from 1:30-5:30 p.m. including an iceless skating rink (free rentals available), ice carving demonstration, giant inflatable snow globe, and a curling rink among other things. In addition, the North Pole Park will be the embarkation area for the new horse-drawn carriage rides which will be available from 2:00-5:00 p.m. Join the Joliet Central Madrigal Singers before the tree lighting ceremony which will begin at 5:15 p.m. The much anticipated 24th annual parade steps off at 5:30 p.m. and features the following bands: Laraway School Band, Joliet Central High School Band, Joliet West High School Band, Troy Middle School Marching Band, Joliet Police Pipe and Drums, and Joliet American Legion Band.
Downtown Businesses will also provide activities throughout the day. The Rialto Square Theatre will once again provide the popular Teddy Bear Tea with seatings at 9:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. The Joliet Area Historical Museum will be open to the public for free and have activities for kids as well as opportunities to visit with Santa. The Joliet Public Library will be providing family photo opportunities and kids crafts. Jitters Coffee House will have Santa visiting at 4:30 p.m. until the parade kicks off.
“This is a great opportunity to showcase the downtown in a new light – pun intended”, said Vicki Sanchez, Marketing & Events Manager of the City Center Partnership. “We want people to enjoy a whole day of re-discovering Downtown Joliet and all it has to offer during the most magical time of the year,” added Priscilla Cordero, Executive Director of the City Center Partnership.
The Light up the Holidays Festival and Parade is one of many downtown events produced by the Joliet City Center Partnership in order to provide an opportunity to showcase and promote downtown
businesses and boost community pride among Joliet residents and visitors. For more information about upcoming events in Downtown Joliet, visit www.jolietccp.com.