The City of Poughkeepsie Celebration of Lights Parade and Fireworks is back this year!

Dec 3, 6:30 p.m.

After a two-year wait, the 27th Celebration of Lights Parade and Fireworks is back. This event will kick off the holiday season in Poughkeepsie, with thousands in attendance. The Celebration of Lights Parade will be led by Mayor Rob Rolison and members of the Common Council. Entertainment will be provided by Arm of the Sea Theatre’s musicians and giant puppets, Amerscott Highland Pipers, Brasskill Brass Band, Fat Boi’s Brass Band, The Bucket Brigade and The Wholly Brass Band, plus Mid-Hudson Rowing Association, SPOKE Poughkeepsie Bike Club, the Poughkeepsie Library’s Bookmobile and finally Santa Claus will arrive on a City of Poughkeepsie Fire Engine.

6:30 p.m.

The parade will start on Main and Garden streets and proceed to the evening’s first Christmas tree lighting on Main at Mural Square near Market Street. The parade will then proceed down Main Street to Clover Street, where it will conclude at Dongan Square Park for the second Christmas tree lighting. Four giant floats designed by Cocoon Theatre artistic director Andres San Millan will be featured in the parade. He has created replicas of Vassar Brothers Institute, the Steamboat Mary Powell, the 1911 Pelton Mansion, and new this year, celebrating the power of children to motivate others, the Ruby Bridges Locomotive. Participants in festive costumes with props created with recycled materials will accompany the floats. In addition, local artist Suprina will unveil a new float called Mother Earth created in collaboration with Isabel Velasco Gomez and Guadalupe Rodriguez Ramirez!

7:15 p.m.

Poughkeepsie River District Business Association and Legion Fireworks will present the area's only winter fireworks display.

7:30 p.m.

The Bardavon will host a concert on the Mighty Wurlitzer Organ followed by a screening of the 1946 holiday film classic It’s a Wonderful Life at 8 p.m. Tickets are $6 each. Lambe Lambe, a multi-stage small puppet theatre presentation for all ages by Paperheart puppets will precede and follow the film.

The festivities are presented by the Bardavon, Cocoon Theatre and City of Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County and Poughkeepsie River District Business Association, with support from Nuvance Health, Rhinebeck Bank, Dutchess Cars, GEODIS and TD Bank Foundation.

Parking is available in City Municipal lots. For further information, check out the Bardavon website at or call the Bardavon or UPAC box offices Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at (845) 473-2072 or UPAC at (845) 339-6088 or email at To purchase tickets online 24 hours a day, visit (fees will apply).