The 71st Annual Junior Orange Bowl Parade will march down the streets of Coral Gables, Florida at 5:00 pm on Sunday, December 15. The rain or shine event, featuring this year’s theme of “Miracle on the Mile: A Holiday Parade and Celebration,” is a traditional centerpiece of the holiday season in South Florida.
A Star-Studded Event
Pre-parade entertainment, sponsored by Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, includes the Von Henry Express, a modern world music ensemble, that combines the musical histories of its members, specifically jazz, R&B and dance.
Returning as mistress of ceremonies is GiGi Diaz, iHeart RADIO 93.9 on-air talent and producer. Born in Cuba, this FIU grad has become one of South Florida’s most popular social voices both on and off the radio.
Everyone Loves a Parade – And Here’s How to Watch
The Parade is open to the public and anyone who wants to participate in this holiday tradition can enjoy it in one of two ways.
1) Free viewing is available along the parade route. Viewers are encouraged to bring their own chair to position on the sidewalk. Many local Coral Gables restaurants and shops will be open during the parade along the route and on adjacent streets.
2) Tickets to the VIP Pre-parade Party including grandstand seating are also available for purchase. Beginning at 3:00 pm under the tent adjacent to Coral Gables City Hall, VIP ticket holders will enjoy complimentary food and drinks and live pre-parade performances. Tickets are sold on Eventbrite: $40 for Adults and $20 for Youth (under 18)
The parade route will stay the same as last year, beginning at the intersection of North Alhambra Circle and Ponce de Leon Blvd, then heading south on Ponce, turning west onto Miracle Mile and finishing just past the Grandstand seating area in front of Coral Gables City Hall.
Santa! I Know Him!
The Parade is a major event during the Junior Orange Bowl festival and draws thousands of visitors to see approximately 50 parade entries which includes 2000 youth community group performers in lighted cars, trucks, floats, bands, dance groups, and horses. The highlight of the parade comes at the end with the arrival of Santa Claus, who disembark from their “sleigh” and enter the winter wonderland of Coral Gables Holiday Park. Santa Claus will be available for photographs at his holiday house to capture the magic of the season.
A Holiday Parade with a Festive Competition
All units marching in the parade will be judged in four categories, with the winner in each category receiving $500. The categories are as follows:
· Best Overall
· Best use of Holiday Theme
· Best Community Spirit
· Best Marching Band
· Best (live) Musical performance
The Junior Orange Bowl Festival is a collection of ten (10) cultural, academic and sporting events for youth including Basketball, Creative Writing, Cross Country, Golf, Parade, Photography, Robotics, Sports Ability Games, Tennis and Youth Ambassadors. Each event is aimed at providing magical moments for its participants. For more information, please visit www.juniororangebowl.org. Click here to purchase VIP Pre-Parade Tickets