Twelfth getaway of Christmas: South Walton, FL’s Tuba Christmas & Baytowne Holiday Lantern Parade and more
Want to do something a little different and a whole lotta fun this holiday season? Head to South Walton, FL, for the Baytowne Holiday Lantern Parade. South Walton is a gorgeous town made up of 16 unique beach communities, close-knit next-door-neighbors that stretch along 26 miles of velvety-white sand lapped by the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
Each year, South Walton’s Sandestin community holds a holiday blow-out at the Village of Baytowne Wharf, a lively hub located on the Choctawhatchee Bay in Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. The attractions? A dozen restaurants, 15 shops, several nightlife venues, including an old-school nightclub and a bar with dueling pianos, and activities like Blast Arcade & Lazer Maze, Blast ‘em Shootin’ Gallery, Baytowne Zipline and a Tower Climb.
At 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12, the Playground Music Center presents a Tuba Christmas, featuring more than 30 brass instruments playing all the holiday classics. This event is immediately followed at 6 p.m. by the 6th Annual Baytowne Holiday Lantern Parade where decorated paper lanterns in the shapes of iconic symbols of the holiday season and illuminated golf carts from Sandestin homeowners fill the streets. Afterward, you can visit with Santa while enjoying live music. Admission is free. NOTE: Before Tuba Christmas gets underway, a Paper Lantern Workshop takes place at 4:30 p.m.
Also taking place at the Village is 12 Nights of Lights, a festive light show taking place in the Events Plaza set to everybody’s favorite holiday tunes at 6, 7 and 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday nights leading up to Christmas. Show dates: Dec. 11, 12, 16, 18, 19, 23, 25 and 26. This free event will also be featured during the holiday editions of the Village of Baytowne Wharf’s Wednesday Night 7 p.m. Concert Series.
No matter which events you come for, bring your ice skates and take a spin around Baytowne On Ice. Open through Sunday, Jan. 31, 2016, this seasonal ice skating rink located at the Apex Skating Pavilion has become a local holiday favorite.
Closing out December is the Baytowne Countdown on New Year’s Eve, Thursday, Dec. 31. The fun kicks off at the Village of Baytowne Wharf at 6 p.m. with dancing to the music of The Good Lookings on the Baytowne LIVE Stage and, on the Events Plaza Stage, Steve Moakler at 8 p.m., Native Run at 10 p.m. and Jersey, a Bruce Springsteen Tribute Band, at 11:30 p.m.
A spectacular fireworks show will light up the sky over the lagoon at 8 p.m. and midnight. Admission is free. NOTE: Ages 21 and over after 10 p.m.; ages 20 and under must be accompanied by a legal guardian after 10 p.m.
For more information about holiday events taking place at the Village of Baytowne Wharf, contact 850-267-8000 or visit the website. For information to help plan your trip to South Walton, FL, call 800-822-6877 or 850-267-1216 or click into the Visit South Walton website.