Thanksgiving break is a great opportunity to slow down, sleep in a bit later, and plan activities with your family that you might not find time for during the school week hustle and bustle.
We’ve got a list of ideas and activities including a kid-friendly volunteer opportunity.
Click on the name of any event below to see times, locations, and additional details.
🍂 Join the Salvation Army and Lakeside Village for the Red Kettle Kickoff on Friday, November 20
🍂 Get into the holiday spirit at Bartow’s Magic on Main on Friday, November 20
🍂 See the decorated Christmas trees at the RP Funding Center on Friday, November 20 for the Tree Decorating Contest Kick Off. Story time, Santa photos, kids crafts and more.
🍂 Check out our Thanksgiving Break Camp Guide for a list of camps during the week – anywhere from 1/2 day on just 1 day, to full day for every day but Thanksgiving.
🍂 Stop by the RP Funding Center anytime between 9am – 5pm daily to see the City of Lakeland Christmas Tree Contest, with 12 beautifully decorated trees. Vote for your favorite to raise money for the United Way. Runs November 20 – December 31.
🍂 Volunteer with VISTE on Wednesday, November 25 and help deliver over 1800 Thanksgiving meals to the seniors in our community (registration required this year)
🍂 Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and have a Happy Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 26
🍂 Run for the Pies (5K) on Thursday, November 26
🍂 Start your holiday shopping at Lakeside Village on Saturday, November 28 and make reservations for Photos with Santa
🍂 Support our local businesses during Shop Small Saturday on November 28
🍂 Skip cooking and take the kids out for dinner somewhere that Kids Eat Free!
🍂 Order your Thanksgiving dinner in advance and enjoy more time with your family.
🍂 Go on a hike
🍂 Take a walk as a family around Lake Mirror
🍂 Go on a bike ride
🍂 Find a new local playground to explore
🍂 Spend a day at Bok Tower Gardens and check out the Hammock Hollow Children’s Garden and play area
🍂 Plan a Family Game Night – we’ve got a list of our top 10 favorite board games
🍂 Find an outdoor activity
🍂 Dig for sharks teeth and fossils at the Mulberry Phosphate Museum. Make sure you bring a small shovel or other item to dig through the rock pile, and something to sit on – you won’t want to kneel.
🍂 Have a family mini golf competition at Family Fun Center
🍂 Head out for a drive to see Lakeland’s Best Christmas Lights, many are turned on starting on Thanksgiving (Some locations still TBD for 2020)
🍂 Buy your tickets for The Nutcracker and other Christmas Concerts and Live Performances during December
🍂 Find out when your favorite Christmas Movies and TV Specials will be on TV and set that DVR
🍂 Get ALL of your favorite Christmas Events on your calendar with our handy Christmas Event List
🍂 Start planning for CHRISTMAS! Use our huge Christmas Guide to get info on:
🎄 Holiday Day Trips in Central Florida
🎄 Santa Photos and Breakfast with Santa
🎄 Lakeland Christmas Parade & Holiday Parades Across Polk County
🎄 Christmas Concerts, Holiday Shows & Live Performances
🎄 Local Holiday Movie Showings and Christmas Movies & TV Specials
🎄 Christmas Giving Opportunities & Toy Donation Needs
🎄 Holiday Markets and Christmas Craft Fairs in Polk County
🎄 Experience Gift Ideas (that don’t take up space!)
🎄 Ice Skating in Lakeland, Tampa, & Orlando
Don’t miss our November + Thanksgiving Guide for things to do in November, restaurants open on Thanksgiving, places to order Thanksgiving turkey, sides, and pies, places to Donate and Volunteer this holiday season.
Get a head start on the holidays with our Christmas + Holiday Guide featuring Lakeland’s best Christmas light displays, Santa Photos, local Christmas Events, places to find a Christmas tree, Christmas Parades, and so much more!