Fort Worth’s Parade of Lights 2022: What to know about this weekend’s festivities
See full Fort Worth Star-Telegram article by Matt Leclercq here.
More than 120 floats will be part of Fort Worth’s 40th Parade of Lights this weekend, considered the largest illuminated holiday parade in Texas.
The GM Financial Parade of Lights on the evening of Sunday, Nov. 20, caps a day of festivities downtown. The parade began in 1983 as a way to help revitalize the city center, and has since become a tradition on the Sunday before Thanksgiving.
Sundance Square will light up its large Christmas tree at 5 p.m. on Sunday. Workers were raising the 65-foot Norway Spruce on Monday.
Here’s everything you need to know about the 2022 parade, according to Downtown Fort Worth, Inc., which produces the event.
PARADE OF LIGHTS SCHEDULE
Arrive early to get a good spot, as tens of thousands of people attend the parade. You can enjoy hot chocolate, visit downtown shops or grab a meal. The parade of 120-plus illuminated floats begins at 6 p.m. and takes about 10 minutes to move five blocks, according to organizers. It will take about 40 minutes to move the entire route. Santa appears starting around 7:10 p.m.
PARADE OF LIGHTS ROUTE
At 6 p.m., the parade and opening ceremonies begin on Weatherford and Throckmorton streets. The parade route follows Weatherford Street to the east toward Commerce Street, then south to 9th Street. At 9th Street, the parade will proceed west to Houston Street, and then turn north to 2nd Street. It follows 2nd Street to Throckmorton, then south to 3rd Street.
WHAT’S THE COST?
You can watch the parade from the sidewalks along the route (the best spots get claimed early, with some people arriving around 4 p.m.), or you can pay for a street-side seat. Go to fortworthparadeoflights.org to see reserved seating options and to purchase tickets, which start at $18. As of Monday, plenty of seats and packages were still available.
STREET CLOSURES ON SUNDAY
More than 35 streets will be closed during the events. On Sunday, closures begin at 6 a.m., including portions of Weatherford, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, Taylor, Lamar, Burnett, Cherry and Florence streets. Spur 280 from Interstate 35 will close at 4 p.m. Belknap, Houston and North Main streets will remain open to traffic during the parade.
PARKING FOR PARADE OF LIGHTS
Be aware of street closures. Free and paid parking lots and garages are available. Meters are free on weekends, but do not park at meters that are roped off for the event.
You also can leave the car at home and take public transportation. TEXRail will operate on parade day, to and from Fort Worth Central Station, which is two blocks from the parade route. The last eastbound train departs at 10:40 p.m. TEXRail riders can park for free at six Trinity Metro park-and-ride stations and ride the train to downtown.
Trinity Metro will offer bus service to downtown via routes 1, 2 and 15, and also operate the Dash bus throughout downtown and the Cultural District until 10:30 p.m.
WHAT’S NEW THIS YEAR?
The grand marshal is John Sharp, the Texas A&M University System chancellor and former state politician. Texas A&M is investing at least $255 million to build a new expanded campus in downtown Fort Worth.
This year’s Parade of Lights theme is “Lights, Camera … Christmas,” which some floats may incorporate into their designs.
You can watch the parade on KTXA 21 or at CBSDFW.com. The parade will also air Christmas at 7 p.m.