Downtown Orlando's Church Street will become a winter wonderland all December long


  • photo courtesy Church Street District
Downtown Orlando will be a hand-to-god actual winter wonderland throughout December, courtesy of the Church Street District.

Snow will fall, the famous Jack Katanzas star will glitter over Orange Avenue, and horses pulling carriages will supplant the usual pedicab drivers. A music and light show coordinated with "snowfall" will take place nightly at 6, 7, 8 and 9 p.m. (don't know about you, but we'll be there in our finest Xmas shorts and flip-flops). Expect live entertainment from 6-9 p.m. Thursday-Sunday and FREEEE horse and carriage rides Thursdays and Fridays 6-10 p.m.

Commissioner Regina Hill will kick off the festivities with a "30 Days of Christmas" tree lighting ceremony on the steps of the newly opened Floridabilt, Monday, Dec. 2 at 5:30 p.m. (And we wouldn't be us if we didn't say: Maybe next year the more than 20,000 Jewish residents of Orlando can expect a bit of menorah-and-dreidl action in their downtown.)

As of now, scheduled activities include a Santa story time at the Floridabilt 10-11:30 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, followed by cookie decorating at Lion's Pride noon-2 p.m. — but there are sure to be plenty more added as the month draws nearer.

Keep informed at the Orlando Main Streets website. And remember, this holiday extravaganza runs all the way through Dec. 31, meaning snow on New Year's Eve! Hello, romance.

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