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Christmas in Florida: Sunshine State Holidays

Ugly Sweater Contest - Lakeshore - 2023

Christmas in Florida is a stark contrast from what you would usually expect of the holiday season. While the image of snow-covered landscapes might be the traditional backdrop for festive celebrations, Florida has its unique way of embracing the yuletide spirit. In central Florida, residents at Simple Life in Lakeshore have uncovered a treasure trove of holiday delights and fun events throughout the area. Here are some of their personal favorites!

Christmas in Florida at The Villages®

One of the go-to destinations for holiday festivities near Lakeshore is The Villages®. Only a short 2.5 miles from the community the Christmas Model Train Show at Colony Cottage Recreation captures the imagination of young and old alike, transporting visitors into a miniature winter wonderland. The Holiday Orchestra events add a musical touch to the season, providing a melodic backdrop to the joyous celebrations.

As the sun sets over Lake Sumter, the adventure continues with Lighted Boat Cruises. People can embark on a nautical adventure, surrounded by the gentle glow of holiday lights reflecting on the water. It’s a unique way to experience the joy of the season, set against the picturesque backdrop of this Floridian oasis.


Outdoor Holiday Movie Nights offer a cozy cinematic experience under the stars. Families gather on blankets, sipping hot cocoa, and enjoying classic holiday films in the crisp Florida night air. Additionally, numerous local holiday drives and events provide residents with opportunities to spread joy and support those in need during the holiday season.

Holidays in the City of Fruitland Park

The City of Fruitland Park boasts an annual Christmas event that has become a beloved tradition for Lakeshore residents. This family-friendly extravaganza features everything from bounce houses and a live DJ to food trucks and vendors, creating an atmosphere of festive cheer. The highlight of the evening is the arrival of Mr. and Mrs. Claus. This classic Christmas pair make a grand entrance by fire truck, spreading holiday magic and delighting children of all ages.

Christmas in Florida at Ocala

Ocala is another gem in the Florida holiday scene. Presented by St. John Lutheran Church, The Ocala Christmas Light Spectacular is an attractive holiday celebration. This event transforms the Florida Horse Park into a winter wonderland. The 1.8-mile drive-thru route is adorned with countless twinkling lights, creating a mesmerizing spectacle. Families can also tune into K Country 93.7 to synchronize the experience with heartwarming Christmas tunes.

The Ocala Christmas Light Spectacular is more than driving through a dazzling display; it’s an immersive experience. Even in the warmth of Florida, visitors can don skates and glide through a winter wonderland, adding a touch of frosty magic to their holiday season. Food trucks cater to every craving, offering a variety of festive treats to satisfy even the most discerning palate. For those who prefer a more leisurely pace, dedicated walk-thru areas allow visitors to stroll among the lights, capturing the holiday vibe up close.

Lakeshore’s Event Calendar

Our community management staff also plan a wide variety of holiday themed events at this time of the year. You can enjoy a beautifully decorated clubhouse, ugly sweater contests, pictures with Santa, chilis tasting competition and so much more. We are always more than happy to take suggestions and let the residents of our central Florida community plan their own events.

While Florida may not be the first place you associate with the holidays, the residents at Lakeshore know that the Sunshine State is a festive paradise during this special time of year. From The Villages® to Fruitland Park and Ocala, each destination offers a unique blend of holiday magic. Although specific events may change year-by-year in these locations, one thing is for certain: there are plenty of Holiday celebrations to be had!



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