Christmas kicks off this weekend in Niagara Falls

City will hold its annual Santa Claus parade and tree lighting ceremony on Saturday, with the celebrated Winter Festival of Lights starting the same day. Various other parades and festivals being held around the region in the weeks to come. Photo credit: HOCO Entertainment


Christmas festivities are already gearing up across Niagara, with several festivals and parades scheduled over the coming weeks. Here is a selection of upcoming events so you don’t miss out on all the holiday season has to offer. 

Niagara Falls 

A three-for-one celebration, the City of Niagara Falls will be holding their annual Santa Claus parade and tree lighting event on November 18 at 3:30pm. Over 50 community groups and floats will be participating in this year’s parade, which will be starting off at Victoria Avenue at Armoury, and then onwards to Queen Street, ending at City Hall.

Following the parade there will be a tree lighting ceremony in Centennial Square at City Hall. After the tree lighting, the public can stay for a meet and greet with Santa and Mrs. Claus, and enjoy hot chocolate, entertainment, and food trucks. 

The Niagara Falls Winter Festival of Lights display will also commence on November 18. Canada’s largest free outdoor lights festival is spread out along the Niagara Parkway tourism district in Niagara Falls. Another part of this winter festival is the Falls Illumination, taking inspiration from winter in Northern Canada with the theme of Sparkling Winter. This display will run on the hour as part of the regular illumination schedule.


In Welland there will be another multi-event celebration on Saturday, November 25, beginning with the Santa Claus parade at 5:00pm. The theme for this year’s parade is “Merry and Bright,” with floats decorated with lights travelling from East Main Street towards downtown, and then ending at City Hall. Upon arrival at Civic Square, Santa and Mayor Campion will light the city’s Christmas tree. 

Lastly, the public can enjoy chili samples at the Merry Chili Christmas cook-off between Welland’s fire chief and deputy-fire chief following the tree lighting. 

St. Catharines 

Let It Glow: A Celebration of Light outdoor festival will take place December 1 from 5-8:00pm in downtown Port Dalhousie at Rennie Park and Lakeside Park. The festival will feature light displays, rides on the historic Lakeside Park carousel, and a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus. 

The light displays will remain up until January 7, 2024.

Port Colborne 

Port Colborne’s evening Santa Parade will be held Saturday, December 2 at 6:30pm. Floats will light up the downtown core, with Santa and Mrs. Claus making their grand entrance by tugboat, before joining the parade.


The Niagara-on-the-Lake Christmas parade is on Saturday, December 9 at 11:00am, travelling through the streets of Old Town. The public is encouraged to plan accordingly if they wish to see the parade in person as parking is limited.

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