REA­SONS FOR THE SEA­SON: NAPLES

Night lights, tree lights and fire­works

RSWLiving - - Contents - BY BRIGID O’MAL­LEY Brigid O’Mal­ley is a writer liv­ing in South­west Florida.

Night lights, tree lights and fire­works

NIGHT LIGHTS IN THE GAR­DEN The hottest hol­i­day ticket in Naples is get­ting even hot­ter. More lights on more nights are planned for the an­nual Night Lights in the Gar­den at the Naples Botan­i­cal Gar­den, a show-stop­ping, mag­i­cal il­lu­mi­na­tion event that brings in thou­sands of peo­ple each year. The dates are Dec. 8 to Dec. 23; Dec. 26 to Dec. 30, and Jan.1 to Jan. 3, 2018.

Cel­e­brate the hol­i­days in a lush trop­i­cal par­adise that is trans­formed into a spec­tac­u­lar light show as the sun sets. Each even­ing in­cludes hol­i­day mu­si­cal per­for­mances, fam­ily ac­tiv­i­ties, fes­tive treats and the en­chant­ing il­lu­mi­na­tion scenes through­out the gar­den. The lights bring all ages into the gar­den to see the spec­ta­cle.

Naples Botan­i­cal Gar­den mem­bers can pur­chase their tick­ets early dur­ing an ex­clu­sive of­fer­ing through Nov. 13. The pub­lic can buy tick­ets be­gin­ning Nov. 14. Tick­ets must be pur­chased prior to the event and are avail­able at the ticket win­dow from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tues­days. Tick­ets are also avail­able on naples­gar­den.org.

COM­MU­NITY HANUKKAH CEL­E­BRA­TION

A com­mu­nity-wide Hanukkah cel­e­bra­tion brings hun­dreds of peo­ple to­gether to cel­e­brate their faith and cul­ture. The

cel­e­bra­tion in Naples will be held at the Mer­cato Lawn on Wed­nes­day, Dec. 13 at 5 p.m. The an­nual event, hosted by the Jewish Fed­er­a­tion of Col­lier County, brings to­gether mem­bers of lo­cal sy­n­a­gogues as well as com­mu­nity mem­bers of all faiths. The event in­cludes a latke-eat­ing contents, mu­sic, kids’ per­for­mances and the light­ing of the meno­rah. Check out jew­ish­naples.org for more in­for­ma­tion.

THIRD STREET SOUTH CHRIST­MAS

Christ­mas in Naples be­gins on Third Street South dur­ing the third week of Novem­ber. Santa Claus will at­tend this hol­i­day ex­trav­a­ganza—where it snows in down­town Naples! Naples Mayor Bill Bar­nett will light the of­fi­cial Christ­mas tree, while this trendy, ex­clu­sive shop­ping district comes alive with red and sil­ver dec­o­ra­tions, mu­sic, bells, singing, danc­ing and fab­u­lous hol­i­day treats for vis­i­tors. The court­yards and plazas are filled with hol­i­day cheer. Go to third­street­south.org for fur­ther de­tails.

NAPLES CHRIST­MAS BOAT PA­RADE

There’s noth­ing cooler and truly South­west Florid­ian dur­ing the hol­i­day sea­son than the Naples Christ­mas Boat Pa­rade. Boats dec­o­rated with lights strung from bow to stern in clever hol­i­day mo­tifs fill Naples Bay on Satur­day, Dec. 9 be­tween 6:15 and 8:30 p.m. Thou­sands crowd the coast­line as ev­ery­one from Santa Claus to Ru­dolph the Red-Nosed Rein­deer to as­sorted snow­men light up Naples.

A crowd fa­vorite hol­i­day event, dozens of boats take to the wa­ter to show off their best hol­i­day look in front of a panel of judges. The boat pa­rade, pre­sented by the Ma­rine In­dus­tries As­so­ci­a­tion of Col­lier County, may be viewed from Naples City Dock, Naples Land­ing, Bayview Park and some nearby restau­rants. Learn more about the pa­rade at mi­acc.org. A lo­cal char­ity, the Ricky King Fund, ben­e­fits.

Night Lights (above) il­lu­mi­nate Naples Botan­i­cal Gar­den. Above right, an ice sculp­ture draws a crowd on Third Street South. A Hanukkah cel­e­bra­tion (near right) is held on Mer­cato Lawn. The Christ­mas Boat Pa­rade ben­e­fits a lo­cal char­ity.

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