The Ultimate Guide To Thanksgiving Break On The Emerald Coast
If you love the holiday season but aren’t too crazy about freezing temps and tons of snow, there’s no better place to travel this time of year than to the Emerald Coast. Whether you’re planning a trip to Destin or 30A this Thanksgiving Break, rest be assured, there are tons of holiday events around town for you to enjoy. Check out our guide to all things holiday related over Thanksgiving Break this year!
1. Santa’s Arrival at Destin Commons
The week of Thanksgiving Break is full of holiday festivities. They begin on Friday, November 16th with Santa’s arrival at Destin Commons. This spectacular Christmas event includes face painting, pictures with Rudolf and Frosty, and even a firework show. This is the ultimate Christmas event to get you in the holiday spirit.
2. Rosemary Beach Holiday Market
Head over to Rosemary Beach on Saturday, November 17th, for their 16th Annual Holiday Market. From 9 am to 4 pm, enjoy a day full of holiday cheer. Additionally, you can get all your holiday shopping done early at all the local booths selling unique gifts, fine art, handmade jewelry, pottery, sculptures, stained glass, Christmas decor, and more! On top of that, there will be a bocce ball tournament, merchant open house, and even a breakfast with Santa. Overall, this is a holiday event you’ll want to make sure you attend if you’re visiting over Thanksgiving break.
3. The Nutcracker Ballet at the Seaside Amphitheater
If you’re looking for something festive to do after the Rosemary Beach Holiday Market, look no further. On Saturday, November 17th, enjoy a free outdoor production of The Nutcracker performed by local youth dancers and Ballet Pensacola. The production takes place at the Seaside Amphitheater, so bring your blankets, low-back chairs, and get cozy for a magical holiday tradition.
4. Festival of Trees at Grand Boulevard
On Tuesday, November 20th, Grand Boulevard is hosting their annual Festival of Trees event from 4 pm to 6 pm. The Festival of Trees showcases twelve different uniquely decorated Christmas trees each decorated by a local non-profit organization. Head over to Grand Boulevard to enjoy a tree lighting and award ceremony for the best-decorated trees.
5. Pre-Thanksgiving Party at The Hub
If you’re searching for a fun event to do the day before Thanksgiving, The Hub’s Pre-Thanksgiving Party is the place to be. This free party starts at 2 pm in Watersound Beach and ends at 9 pm. Enjoy a free performance from the REP Theater and live music during the day. At night, there’s even a family movie marathon featuring “Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,” “Free Birds,” and “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.”
6. 30A Thanksgiving Day Charity Race
Kick off Thanksgiving morning with some exercise at the 30A Thanksgiving Day Charity Race. The 30A 10K, 5K, and one-mile fun run all start and end in Rosemary Beach. The race courses take you by incredible views of the gulf and Camp Creek Coastal Dune Lake. Furthermore, all proceeds from the event benefit local charities. The 5K is already sold out, but you can still register for the 10K and one-mile fun run.
7. Baytowne Cinema: “The Polar Express”
In addition to shopping at all the local stores in the area, you can also head over to The Village of Baytowne Wharf for a free movie night on the Events Plaza Lawn. Bring your blankets and low back chairs to watch the holiday classic “The Polar Express” from 7 pm to 9 pm on Friday, November 23rd. In addition, check out the variety of local shops and restaurants in Baytowne while you’re there!
8. South Walton Holiday Parade
On Saturday, November 24th, enjoy the South Walton Holiday Parade in Seaside at 8:30 am. The parade travels through the heart of downtown Seaside, but the Christmas festivities last all day long. Take pictures with Santa and get all your Christmas shopping done at the local specialty shops.
9. Santa’s Magical Arrival at HarborWalk Village
In addition to the South Walton Holiday Parade in Seaside, Santa is also making an appearance at HarborWalk Village in Destin on Saturday, November 24th and Sunday, November 25th. From 12 pm to 5 pm, kids can get their picture taken with Santa, have their face painted, make a craft, or even write a letter to Santa. Additionally, there will be a special mailbox for the North Pole and HarborWalk Village will donate one dollar for every letter collected to a local children’s charity.
10. Turn on the Town
Join Seaside for their annual Turn on the Town event on Saturday, November 24th, at 5 pm as they light their Christmas tree and turn on all the town’s Christmas lights. In addition, there will even be Christmas caroling and a chance for kids to take pictures with Santa. This is a holiday event you absolutely must add to your agenda if you’re staying in 30A over Thanksgiving Break.
11. Old Florida Holiday & Winter Market
Finish Thanksgiving Break with the Old Florida Holiday & Winter Market in WaterColor. This one-of-a-kind Christmas market takes place on Saturday, November 24th, from 5 pm to 9 pm. Additionally, enjoy the town’s tree lighting ceremony, falling snow, live music, horse-drawn carriages, a bonfire with s’mores, pictures with Santa, and tons of holiday booths featuring unique gifts.
We’re wishing you a happy holiday season at Bliss Beach Rentals! Check out our calendar for a full list of events happening throughout November and December this year. Additionally, if you’re still looking for a home to book over Thanksgiving Break, we’ve got you covered. Check out our list of available vacation homes!