Program and Schedule
It’s a day filled with exciting things to do throughout Downtown, from taking care of your holiday shopping in Sundance Square to dining out in some of the finest restaurants in Fort Worth, all while enjoying the holiday spirit of the country’s top holiday parade, and the lighting of the Sundance Square Christmas Tree immediately following the parade.
The XTO Energy Parade of Lights begins at 6:00 PM at the intersection of Belknap Street and Throckmorton Street. The parade proceeds east along Belknap Street, turns south on Commerce and goes all the way to 9th Street. At 9th Street the parade turns west, proceeds past the Convention Center to Houston St., and then turns north on Houston Street all the way to Weatherford St.
Bring your family earlier in the day to Celebrate the Holidays Together Downtown, and make a day of it. Avoid the crowds by parking early or using our shuttle (which runs from Farrington Field beginning at 2:00 PM), and enjoy lunch at hundreds of great restaurants or take advantage of some early bird shopping deals at one of our incredible array of Downtown retailers.
Cowboy Santas volunteers will collect toys around the parade route before the parade. Everyone is encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy (for up to 12 years of age) to give to the Cowboy Santas to help give kids around Fort Worth have a brighter holiday! For more than 32 years, the city has gathered, sorted and helped distribute toys throughout Tarrant County to children of families with income at or below 150% of poverty income guidelines. Toy donations must be new. Items that pose a health or safety risk cannot be accepted, including toys that represent violence. For more information, please go to www.cowboysantas.org.
Schedule of Activities:
- All Day
- Sundance Square Plaza with wonderful Holiday decor, entertainment and activities is open beginning at 2:00
- Shopping and Dining Downtown, including brand new retailers and restaurants thoughout the Central Business District.
- 2:00 PM – The T’s expanded bus service begins (Route 7) from Farrington Field ($3.50 round trip, exact fare required). Parking at Farrington Field is free. For stress free boarding, load The T’s Go Pass App on a mobile device to purchase fares ahead of time. Go to the APP store or to www.gopass.biz for loading instructions. For more information go to www.the-t.com.
- 4:30 PM – Come early to get a great seat, enjoy some hot chocolate or delicious fare, visit the shops of Downtown and Sundance Square (or purchase reserved seating), or enjoy a leisurely meal in any of our Downtown restaurants. Watch for the Wheelie-ing Elvi and entertainment around the route before the parade begins!
- 5:30 PM – Cowboy Santas will ride around the route collecting toys for kids in need! Pass your toys to the front for collection – let’s fill the truck!
- 6:00 PM – Parade begins featuring over 100 illuminated entries.
- Entries featuring community groups and supporters from around Fort Worth.
- Local personalities from around Fort Worth on our announcer stands!
- The parade takes approximately ten minutes to move five blocks – plan accordingly as it will take approximately 40 minutes to traverse the entire route.
- 7:10 PM – Santa begins his trip around the parade route on a specially designed float.
- 7:45 PM (approximately) – Lighting of the Sundance Square Christmas Tree in Sundance Square Plaza!
- 10:00 PM – LAST BUS DEPARTS FOR FARRINGTON FIELD FROM THE ITC!
Watch for our elves selling bright lights before and during the parade. Special hand-held lights will be available for purchase, and we’re hoping to have thousands of illuminated viewers along the parade route to make this the most spectacular parade in America.