Fishermen’s Village will herald in the holiday season with their spectacular “Lighting of the Village” on Nov. 16.

The celebration is the official kick off of the annual “Festival Of Lights,” a display of more than one million lights and themed decorations. Local residents and visitors will enjoy beautiful traditional themed holiday décor and lights both inside and outside Fishermen’s Village.

Festivities begin at 5 p.m. as Santa arrives at the front entrance, courtesy of Punta Gorda Fire Chief Ray Brigg’s Antique Fire Truck.

At 5:30 p.m., an official ribbon cutting will take place with Santa and City of Punta Gorda officials. Part of this year’s ribbon cutting will include a performance by singer extraordinaire, Michael White. As the ribbon is cut, visitors will witness the reveal of the annual Lighting of the Village.

The Lee County Pipes and Drums Band will then parade through the Village, followed by a rousing performance in Center Court.

Other festivities include live music/dancing with the Shane Duncan Band, Moon Dancer Jessica Howard, Finest Face Painting by MaryRose, pictures with Santa (bring your camera), complimentary refreshments and live radio remote with Todd Matthews of Seaview Radio.

The Sugar Plum Fairy, aka Bob “Fig” Newton, will make a special appearance and be available for photo ops.

Patrons are being asked to bring toiletries and hygiene items to be donated to Share The Blessings Ministry, an all-volunteer, nonprofit charity benefiting those in need in Charlotte County. Their mission is to provide hygiene, cleaning and non-perishable food items which serve over 500 individuals and 150 families each month.

Due to the popularity of this event, parking will fill up fast, so arrive early. Security personnel will be offering golf cart rides throughout the evening to transport you from your car to the Village entrance.

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