December 13–15: 6th Annual Carefree Christmas Festival
Mark your calendar! Winter arrives in downtown Carefree with the 6th Annual Carefree Christmas Festival Dec. 13 through Dec. 15.
The holiday event provides three days and two nights of free holiday festivities at Carefree Desert Gardens and Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion, 101 Easy St. in Carefree. The signature Electric Light Parade will take place at 6 p.m. Dec. 14 along Easy Street. A fireworks display with a special commemorative salute, in cooperation with the 100 Club, will take place to honor the 19 fallen Yarnell firefighters at 8 p.m., immediately following the parade.
Other activities include a kids’ zone with 35 tons of real snow, carriage rides, caroling, dance and singing performances, a Nativity display, a pet parade and pet adoptions, and other activities for the entire family. Santa will be in attendance throughout the weekend for photos and requests.
An outdoor shopping and gift mart with more than 100 exhibitors and a holiday food court will be held throughout the weekend, offering daytime and nighttime outdoor holiday shopping amidst holiday music and festivities.
This year’s expanded event includes a live holiday jazz concert by the Kelso Brothers Quintet, dance performances by Adage Dance Company and the 10-piece Affinity Dance Band, plus a medley of theater classics presented by Desert Foothills Theater.
The four-acre Carefree Desert Gardens provide a stunning backdrop for this family-friendly event. Thousands of cacti, many of them rare or unusual specimens, are illuminated in holiday lights for the event.
More than 35,000 people are expected to attend. Parking is free. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early for the parade.