(GDN) — Downtown Goldsboro officially begins its holiday season this week. The city’s Downtown Lights Up event is set for this Tuesday, November 23, from 5 – 8 PM with activities along Center Street from Ash to Spruce. All activities are free and open to the public.
Events begin at 5pm in front of City Hall, with the official Lights Up countdown at 5:30 PM. Activities will continue along Center Street, down to The HUB from 5:30 – 8 PM including free horse-drawn trolley rides through the twinkling lights.
Shop and dine downtown during the event, enjoying extended hours and festive storefronts from many downtown merchants.
Downtown Lights Up is sponsored by NC Community Federal Credit Union, and features visits with Santa Claus, festive maze, holiday characters, hot cocoa, kids’ crafts, trolley rides, live entertainment, inflatable slides, outdoor movies and more!
Here are the event details, sorted by location:
- 200 Block of N. Center Street (in front of City Hall), 5pm – 7pm:
- Tree lighting at 5:30pm in front of City Hall. From 5pm – 7pm, enjoy festive activities, crafts, treats, hot cocoa, face painting, balloon art and more provided by 18 community vendors.
- Event sponsor, NC Community Credit Union will present a themed photo booth for event-goers to snap a festive keepsake of the event.
- Goldsboro Police and Fire Departments will host interactive, static displays, plus meet & greets with Scruff McGruff.
- 10 community groups will perform on stage immediately following the tree lighting. Groups include local dance studios, vocalists and musicians.
- New this year, race your friends and family in our life-size maze, designed and assembled by City of Goldsboro Building and Grounds Dept.
- Santa’s sleigh will land on N. Center in front of Artistic Dance Academy, where he’ll be available for visits and photos. Santa tickets will be given out starting at 5pm, with 10 tickets per 10 minute time slot. Free photos with Santa will be taken by local photographers and posted to the Downtown Goldsboro Facebook page after the event.
- 100 Block of N. Center Street, 5:30pm – 8pm
- Horse-drawn trolley rides are a staple of this annual event. 3 trollies will take event-goers on a nostalgic ride along Center Street to enjoy the sights and sounds of the season. Trollies will pick-up in front of the John Street Parking Lot. Can’t catch a Trolley at Lights Up? Downtown Goldsboro will host free trolley rides on Tuesdays, November 30th – December 21st, from 6pm – 8pm.
- Sing along to your favorite carols with Goldsboro High School choral group, led by Victoria Atkins and the Hitmen, led by Teague Horton.
- Salvation Army canteen serving hot cocoa to event-goers
- 200 Block of S. Center Street 5:30pm – 8pm
- Share the 1966 Christmas classic, How the Grinch Stole Christmas with your family at The HUB.
- Skullie’s & Kendall’s Creamery food trucks are serving up food and treats at The HUB.
- New this year, enjoy an inflatable slide and obstacle course.
- Kids can meet and greet with their favorite characters, including Mickey & Minnie, Elsa & Olaf, Paw Patrol’s Marshall and Spongebob
- Write and mail your letters to Santa at the Curtis Media Letters to Santa station across from The HUB. The Letters to Santa station will be on-site through December 23rd and letters will be read live each morning on 98.3 WGBR.