One of our most favorite holiday activities is heading to Estes Park for the annual Catch the Glow Parade. The day after Thanksgiving, with bellies still full of delicious food, and our thought full of gratitude for the blessings in our lives, we head up the mountain to welcome the Christmas season as a family. Rather than focusing on the hustle and bustle of commercialism on Black Friday, this tradition focuses on the magic and wonder of the season.
Starting at noon, there are free activities that kids young and old will enjoy: hay rides thru Estes Park, visits with Santa Claus, holiday music that sets the scene, and holiday characters (like Frosty the Snowman) strolling around town. Another favorite activity is heading to the ice rink! It’s great to take a few spins on the ice together, and for some reason it always makes us feel like a kid again. Last year we enjoyed the fact that there were free cookies and hot chocolate provided by the town that warmed us up after ice skating.
This is a photo of the parade route around 2:30 pm (last year).
All the spots along the curb are staked out, so if you are keen on having the best viewing for the parade, be sure to get there early to save a place!
At 5:30 pm the streets come alive with an old fashioned parade. Thousands of twinkling lights, favorite holiday characters, carolers, brass bands, woodland creatures, baton twirlers, rodeo queens, and fantastic floats parade through downtown in the moonlight. It’s really something to behold!
With Hwy 36 open, it’s really quite easy to get here too!
If you want to make a weekend of it, plenty of local lodges are offering special packages for this wonderful family event, as well as a selection of restaurants in town that will do all the cooking for you! Click here for lodging specials
Catch the Glow Parade Lights by Eric Rose
Give yourself a break from the kitchen and the whole family something to be thankful for with a holiday retreat in Estes Park this November. All the festive events and delicious Thanksgiving dinner options will allow your entire family to relax, enjoy the mountain scenery and get deep into the holiday spirit. After a filling feast at one of our cozy restaurants, grab your spot early and enjoy the excitement of the Catch the Glow Lighted Christmas Parade on Friday night. All weekend long you can start your holiday shopping on our main street with a variety of unique gifts, friendly holiday characters, festive strolling carolers and a visit with Santa himself. Go to VisitEstesPark.com/Holidays for a full list of Thanksgiving dinner locations, events and more!
Click here for great deals and winter specials to help make your holidays the best ever!