17th Annual Parade of Lights in Downtown Missoula Saturday, December 7

Santa Claus is coming to town for the 17th Annual Parade of Lights!  More than just a parade, this beloved event features children’s activities at over 25 locations, photos with Santa at the new Residence Inn by Marriott Mercantile Building, a lighted parade down Higgins and the Lighting of the Downtown Holiday Tree at the red XXXX’s on North Higgins.

The Parade of Lights, sponsored by TrailWest Bank and Blackfoot, gives Missoulians the opportunity to connect to the community during the holidays.  The day begins with free or low-cost children’s activities hosted by Downtown businesses and organizations from 10am-5pm. This year’s theme of the Parade of Lights is “Lights Around the World” – we welcome and encourage all cultures and religions to celebrate the holiday season in Downtown Missoula!

Santa arrives to meet Mrs. Claus at 1pm at the Mercantile using sustainable transportation provided by the Mountain Line. Following his arrival, photos with Santa will be in the Mercantile hallway until 5pm.

The Parade of Lights begins at 6pm on the Hip Strip and travels North on Higgins to end at the red XXXX’s. There will be free cocoa, music provided by the Childbloom Guitar Program, bonfires, and the lighting of the Downtown Holiday Tree.  Prizes for parade entries include Best School Entry, Best Religious Entry, Best Commercial Entry, and Best Civic/Nonprofit Entry. The parade should not be missed this year as many new organizations will be hitting Higgins with fresh takes on floats and parade offerings.

Can’t make it to the parade? In partnership with MCAT, the parade will be broadcast LIVE on Facebook! Be sure to follow our facebook page: facebook.com/MissoulaDowntown and MCAT’s: facebook.com/MissoulaCommunityTelevision so you won’t completely miss out on this truly magical community event.

The Parade of Lights would not be possible without tremendous additional support by Jim Palmer Trucking, Frame of Mind, First Interstate Bank, Dick Anderson Construction, Charter College, Parkside Credit Union, DoubleTree by Hilton Missoula-Edgewater and many community sponsors and countless volunteers.  There is something for everyone at the Parade of Lights so head Downtown to connect to your community and the holiday spirit!  A full schedule of activities, events and how to get involved can be found at MissoulaDowntown.com/Parade-of-Lights.  Contact Kalina Wickham at the Missoula Downtown Association by email (kalina@missouladowntown.com) or phone (406) 543-4238 for more information.