Tree Lighting Ceremony

Get into the holly-jolly holiday spirit this December! The 30th annual lighting of the Christmas tree promises to be extra-special with the help of some very special guests.

Catch a magical glimpse of Santa as he travels through downtown to light the Christmas tree! A spectacular fireworks show will light up the sky after.

While you’re waiting for Santa, stay warm with games on the Gridiron. Write a letter to Santa, take a sleigh ride, create a craft and meet Santa’s reindeer! Holiday music will fill the air with a live band on the Gridiron.

As part of Downtown South Bend’s First Fridays, there’s so much more holiday cheer to experience. See what all is in store after the tree lighting, here.


  • Santa’s Arrival: 6pm
  • Tree Lighting Ceremony: Approx. 6:15pm
  • Fireworks: Approx. 6:45pm
  • Santa’s House: 7pm – 9pm
  • For other First Friday activities, click here.

Additional Information

  • This is a free event, and open for all.
  • Street parking and parking garages are both free after 5pm.