Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade
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The 47th Annual Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade will be held on Friday, December 2, 2022. More than 60,000 people come to view the award winning parade featuring lighted floats, marching bands, giant balloons and of course Santa Claus! The parade route runs through the middle of downtown Gatlinburg.
The parade will be led by Academy of Country Music award winner and Grand Ole Opry Member, Mark Wills. Wills has captivated fans and listeners since his first top-charting success at the young age of 23. Billboard named his Number 1 Hit “19 Somethin” the second most played song of the decade in 2009. It was one of a string of hits including "Wish You Were Here," "She's in Love," "Don't Laugh at Me," "I Do (Cherish You)," and "Jacob's Ladder," among others. Wills was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry in January 2019.
Additional celebrity guests have been announced, adding to a star-studded lineup for the annual Gatlinburg Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade.
Acclaimed by CMT as one of the “Next Women of Country,” Hannah Dasher will appear in the annual seasonal parade. Dasher recently performed at the Gatlinburg Winter Magic Celebration, entertaining guests, and visitors alike with her vivacious country sound. A rising star in Nashville, Dasher has opened for legendary artists such as Hank Williams Jr. Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Reba McEntire. Her breakout single “Girls Call The Shots” hit over 4 Million streams, receiving praise from renowned music publications, Rolling Stone and Billboard. Along with her musical successes, Dasher is also known for her larger-than-life personality on the “Stand By Your Pan” TikTok Series. The platform is followed by over 1.5 million and has received over 18 million likes, as Dasher entertains viewers through her cooking tutorials and musical performances.
East Tennessee native and country music singer/songwriter, Janelle Arthur will also add to the prestigious list of special guests appearing at Gatlinburg’s annual holiday tradition. Arthur’s roots are steeped deep in the Smoky Mountains, performing at venues across Sevier County. These include Country Tonite Theater and Dollywood, where she even portrayed a young Dolly Parton. The country star began her rise to fame, performing on American Idol, where she placed as a Top 5 Finalist. A nod to her roots, Arthur has released country hit “Hand Me Downs” featuring Dolly Parton, herself. She has also opened for renowned musical artists such as Blake Shelton, Justin Moore, and Chris Young.
Beginning at 7:30 p.m. from Baskins Creek Bypass and East Parkway, a spectacular parade line-up of balloons, floats decorated by local businesses and community groups, and high school marching bands, spans through downtown before ending at traffic light #10. Spectators are encouraged to arrive early on parade day.
Tree Lighting Ceremony:
City officials will host a grand illumination ceremony of the Gatlinburg Christmas Tree at 7:25 pm on the Parkway Plaza at Traffic Light #3.
The Parade route begins at Baskins Creek By-Pass, travels to Traffic Light #3, turns south onto the Parkway, and ends at Traffic Light #10.
Lane Closure Information:
Outbound lane closures will begin approximately at 4:30 p.m. when all U.S. Route 321 traffic will be switched to one lane on the outbound side to make room for float staging. The inbound lane will shut down approximately at 6:50 p.m. All traffic along the parade route will shut down approximately at 7 p.m.
As always we would ask that people be aware of their surroundings and vigilant about personal safety. Officers and EMS will be posted throughout the parade route and available for assistance if needed.
The grandstand seats will be in the TV zone (traffic light #3), which is near the beginning of the parade route. Each seat will have a great view of the parade. Buy Grandstand Seats here.