It’s too early to tell how “normal” Christmas will be this year, but Downtown Greensboro Inc. (DGI) has announced that the traditional holiday celebrations are coming back to downtown Greensboro in 2021.

The annual Festival of Lights will be held on Friday, Dec. 3, followed by the Greensboro Holiday Parade on Saturday, Dec. 4.

In 2020 both the Festival of Lights and the Holiday Parade were not exactly canceled but reimagined to fit with COVID-19 restrictions.  The Festival of Lights became Light the Night and featured a laser light show.  The Holiday Parade became the Balloon Regatta where people were invited to drive past the Macy’s Parade-style balloons along the streets in downtown Greensboro.

In 2021 the Festival of Lights and the Holiday Parade will return to their more traditional forms.

The Festival of Lights has been a holiday tradition in downtown Greensboro for more than 30 years and in 2021 it will include long time favorites like the community sing-along, the lighting of the community tree in Center City Park along with carolers and acoustic performances along Elm Street.  But it also includes a feature from 2020, a laser light show at the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and South Elm Street.

The Holiday Parade will once again feature the huge Macy’s Parade-style balloons, floats, dance and drill teams and marching bands.  Also, since there is statewide primary coming up next March, it will most likely will include a number of elected officials and candidates.

Both Festival of Lights and the Holiday Parade are being sponsored by Allegacy.

Chrystal Parnell, Allegacy senior vice president of marketing, said in the press release, “We are thrilled to once again partner with Downtown Greensboro to celebrate the magic of the holidays with our community, family and friends.  Our sponsorship of ‘Downtown in December’ and other events through the year allows us the incredible opportunity to support and encourage folks to visit downtown Greensboro to support the many businesses and restaurants that are the backbone of our community.”