Kicking off the Holiday Season

The holidays are just around the corner. Here are a few holiday events:


Holiday SeasonSaturday, December 2nd

The 5th annual holiday boat parade, Christmas on the Braden River will be held starting at 7:00 PM at Jiggs Landing, 6106 63rd St E, Bradenton, FL 34203. The boats will meet at 6:45 and start the journey upriver at 6 PM and will end at Linger Lodge, 7205 85th St Ct E, Bradenton, FL 34202, at approximately 8 PM. Spectators can enjoy a visit with Santa and other fun events at Jiggs Landing Preserve.  A group of locals and local businesses will keep the tradition alive and make their way to Linger Lodge.  This will consist of both motorboats and kayaks/canoes. This year we expect the number of participants to be greater.


Saturday, December 9th

The Anna Maria Island Privateers Christmas Parade takes place at 10 am beginning at Bayfront Park then travels south through the three island cities ending at Coquina Beach. Following the parade kids can attend Santa’s Open House at Coquina Beach where Santa will be handing out gifts to the kids. This annual event brings great joy to children and adults.


Manatee County’s annual A Night Before Christmas features Santa Claus visiting G.T. Bray Park to meet with all the children 10 am – 2 pm. The event will include face painting, bounce house, snow, hayrides, and much more. This awesome event is great for kids of all ages. Concessions will also be available. G.T. Bray Park, 5502 33rd Avenue Drive West, Bradenton.


The 20th Annual Manatee Holiday Boat Parade of lighted boats begins at dusk near Snead Island. The route then proceeds east past the Bradenton Yacht Club, to Riverhouse Reef and Grill and the Regatta Pointe Marina. The parade turns south at the Green Bridge and moves onward to PIER 22 and the Twin Dolphin Marina. Public viewing sites are available from the Green Bridge Pier, Riverhouse Reef & Grill, PIER 22 and on the Riverwalk in downtown Bradenton. Santa will be making two appearances in the Parade, once at the beginning and again at the Grand Finale.


Sounds of the Seasons takes place on Old Main Street that evening. Celebrate the Christmas spirit with this Family Event which includes music, movies, Santa’s village in the courtyard, snow blowers and more.


Sunday, December 10th

Take in Christmas of long ago at The Gamble Plantation Christmas Open House with decorations, live demonstrations, the United Daughters of the Confederacy will be dressed in period costumes and conducting tours, and more. Tours are free but donations accepted and $1 donation per car for parking. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m at Gamble Plantation Historic State Park, 3708 Patten Ave, Ellenton.


Friday, December 15th

2nd Annual Holiday Movie on the Riverwalk, “Elf.” Free. 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. The Pavillion on the Riverwalk, downtown Bradenton.


Saturday, December 16th

Experience the joys of the season at Christmas on Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach. From 4:30 – 8:30 pm enjoy the holiday decorations, music, games, food and drinks while shopping for unique holiday gifts at local merchants.