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Followed by It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) on the Bardavon’s big screen at 8pm

After a 2 year wait, the 27th annual Celebration of Lights Parade and Fireworks is BACK – Friday, December 3 at 6:30pm! This event kicks off the holiday season in Poughkeepsie as thousands attend.

Presented by the Bardavon, Cocoon Theatre and City of Poughkeepsie, County of Dutchess and Poughkeepsie River District Business Association, with support from Nuvance Health, Rhinebeck Bank, Dutchess Cars, GEODIS and TD Bank Foundation.

The parade will commence at 6:30pm on Main Street and Garden Street and proceed to the evening’s first Christmas tree lighting on Main, at Mural Square near Market Street.

The parade will then proceed down Main Street to Clover Street where it will conclude at Dongan Square Park for the second Christmas tree lighting. Then at 7:15, Poughkeepsie River District Business Association and Legion Fireworks will present the area’s only winter fireworks display.

FEATURED in the PARADE: Cocoon Theatre artistic director Andres San Millan has created FOUR giant float replicas of Vassar Brothers Institute, the Steamboat Mary Powell, the 1911 Pelton mansion and new this year, celebrating the power of children to motivate others, the Ruby Bridges Locomotive. Participants in festive costumes with props created with recycled materials will accompany the floats.

In addition, local artist Suprina will unveil a new float called Mother Earth created in collaboration with Isabel Velasco Gomez and Guadalupe Rodriguez Ramirez!

The Celebration of Lights Parade is led by Mayor Rob Rolison and members of the Common Council and will be joined by the Arm of the Sea Theatre’s musicians and giant puppets, Amerscott Highland Pipers, Brasskill Brass Band, Fat Boi’s Brass Band, The Bucket Brigade and The Wholly Brass Band, plus Mid-Hudson Rowing Association, SPOKE Poughkeepsie Bike Club, the Poughkeepsie Library’s Bookmobile, and finally Santa Claus will arrive on a City of Poughkeepsie Fire Engine.

Following the parade and fireworks, the Bardavon will present a screening of the holiday film classic It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) at 8pm. The film is preceded at 7:30pm with a concert on the Mighty Wurlitzer Organ. Seats $6. This holiday film event is sponsored by Marshall & Sterling. Proof of vaccination is required for entry to the theater (see below).

In the lobby, Lambe Lambe, a multiple stage small puppet theatre presentation by Paperheart puppets will precede and follow the film with a holiday fantasy experience for all ages.

Underwriting of the floats at this time comes from: Chocovision, Prime Print, Jason and Darin Page, Williams Lumber, Dutchess Metal, River District Business Association, Alex’s Restaurant, TERN Construction, Mike Haggerty, Alan Page, CF Shoe Repair, Mark Pastreich, Indotronix Investors Corporation, Hudson Valley Office Furniture, Shatzi’s, El Azteca Restaurant, Get Real Surfaces, MHVFC and Alfred Torrigliani from Construction Services.


Date & Time

Friday, December 03 2021
6:30 pm


Downtown Poughkeepsie
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Ordering Directions
Purchase tickets for other events in person at the Bardavon Box Office, 35 Market Street, Poughkeepsie, 845.473.2072 or the UPAC Box Office, 601 Broadway, Kingston, 845.339.6088.