In a dazzling celebration of holiday magic, Palm Springs gears up for the 31st Annual Festival of Lights Parade, taking place along the iconic Palm Canyon Drive on December 2 at 545pm.This signature event attracts up to 100,000 residents and visitors annually, featuring enchanting floats, vibrant marching bands, and colossal holiday balloons, with the charismatic Canine Mayor Buddy Holly leading the procession as the first-ever “Canine Grand Marshal.” The festivities kick off on December 1 with the Official City of Palm Springs Holiday Tree Lighting, hosted by Mayor Grace Garner and Canine Mayor Buddy Holly, creating a festive atmosphere with caroling, hot cocoa, and holiday arts and crafts. The parade, a cherished tradition since the early 1990s, was envisioned by former Mayor Will Kleindienst and has grown into one of the top ten holiday parades in the country. This year’s Grand Marshals include local celebrity Hannah Wright, NBC Palm Springs film critic Manny The Movie Guy, and Palm Springs Fire Chief Paul Alvarado. The entire Coachella Valley is invited to experience the joy of the season in the unique and vibrant setting of Palm Springs.
The Palm Springs Festival of Lights Parade, inaugurated in the early 1990s on Palm Canyon Drive, has evolved into a cherished annual holiday tradition in downtown Palm Springs. Conceived by former Mayor Will Kleindienst and a dedicated community group, the parade takes place every first Saturday in December. It serves as a festive celebration of the holiday spirit, attracting an estimated 100,000 attendees each year and contributing to the region’s unique tourism landscape. Over its 30-year history, the parade has showcased marching bands, performers, iconic characters like Mickey Mouse and Snoopy, and, notably, signature floats adorned with thousands of vibrant holiday lights and Macy’s-style balloons. This event consistently earns recognition as one of the Coachella Valley’s best local attractions.