Forest City Christmas

Christmas Video

The Town of Forest City is honored to continue the tradition of over one million Christmas lights along historic Main Street in 2023. Voted the #1 Christmas town in the greater Asheville, NC area and the #2 place to see Christmas lights in Western North Carolina by, the Town of Forest City welcomes you to come visit and experience our Hometown Holiday Festivities!

Our Hometown Holiday Festivities will be held November 23, 2023-January 1, 2023!


Join us on Thursday, November 23 at 6:30PM for our annual lighting ceremony!  Make sure you are on Main Street when Mayor Steve Holland and his special guest flip the magic switch that turns on the lights at 7PM!

NOTE:  Historic Main Street will be closed from Broadway Street to Church Street beginning at 9AM on Thursday, November 23.  There will be no parking on Main Street due to the lighting ceremony. We encourage you to park in the municipal lots between Main Street and Trade Street and in the grassy area across from First Baptist Church if you are attending the lighting ceremony. Main Street will reopen at 9PM. Many of our businesses will be open on Thanksgiving night for your shopping pleasure. Stop in and support our local businesses during the holiday season!


The annual Forest City Christmas Parade will be held on Sunday, November 23 at 3PM.  The parade begins at Cool Springs Administrative Building and travels east on Main Street to First United Methodist Church. There will be no parking on eastbound Main Street during the parade. Applications for the parade will be available after October 13. Applications can be found in-person at the Town Hall Collections Office (128 N. Powell Street, Forest City, NC 28043) and Mooneyham Library (240 East Main Street, Forest City, NC 28043).   Deadline for applications is November 9, 2023 at 5PM.  Contact Amy Bridges at 828-447-1730 for more information.  


December 1 & 2: on sale on Monday, November 27 at 12PM
December 8 & 9 on sale on Monday, December 4 at 12PM
December 15 & 16: on sale on Monday, December 11 at 12PM 

December 22 & 23: on sale on Monday, December 18 at 12PM

Reserve your own private horse-drawn carriage for a ride under the lights along historic Main Street. Carriage rides will be available on December 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23 from 6-8:45PM. Carriage rides will be sold online in advance through a reservation system. Visit to reserve your carriage. Carriages can seat 4 adults or fewer adults plus additional children. The carriages will depart from Huntley Alley behind the concession stand at POPS (153 Park Square, Forest City, NC 28043).

Carriages must be reserved in advance.  Reservations will go live on the dates and times listed above. Visit and click on  "Christmas" at the top menu.  Select a quantity of “1” to book an entire carriage. Each carriage ride you purchase has a designated line that you will wait in. For example: if you purchase “Friday, 12/1 Carriage Rides - 6:00PM - Line 1”, you will go to Line 1 and depart from there. Reservations are only available online and will not be sold the day of. Please arrive at least ten minutes early for your reservation. If you do not arrive at your scheduled time, we will consider your reservation forfeited and no refund will be available. Please dress warmly in case of cold weather.

Carriage rides may be cancelled due to inclement weather. In case of a cancellation due to weather, the purchase amount will be refunded to the original payment method. Refunds can take up to 7 days to be processed. Stay tuned to our Facebook page or call 828.447.1730 for cancellation information.


Bring the family and enjoy a hayride along historic Main Street. Hayrides will be available on December 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23 from 6PM-9:00PM. Hayrides will load at Main Street Meetings (108 E. Main Street, Forest City, NC 28043). Hayride ticket sales begin at 6PM and are sold first come, first served.


Visit with Santa on the stage inside POPS December 1, 2, 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 22 and 23 from 6PM-9PM.


The "ice" skating rink will be open December 1, 2, 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 22 and 23. Located across Park Square from POPS, the rink is a hit with both young and old alike.  

The "ice" is made of synthetic material.  However, real ice skates are used!


Stroll through POPS and view the largest lighted ornament in the region! The ornament makes a great photo op for your holiday photos. And don't miss the decorated tree located on the small splash pad!

Explore Forest City Main Street Association will be selling hot chocolate, cider and coffee at the POPS concession stand on Fridays and Saturdays during Hometown Holiday Festivities.

Local food trucks will be located near the Rutherford County Farmers Market.

While in Forest City, make sure to visit our local restaurants and shops on historic Main Street. Grab a bite to eat, shop for unique Christmas gifts, and view the decorated storefront windows!  

Lights are on each night from 5PM-11:30PM from Friday, November 24 through Monday, January 1.

Come visit with us this holiday season and experience our Hometown Holiday Festivities!

In the event of inclement weather, some activities may be cancelled. Follow us on Facebook at Forest City Events for up-to-date information.