Here's the scheduled events for the Lake Charles "Light Up The Lake" Christmas Celebration.

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It's hard to believe the year is almost over, but it is and the holidays season is getting ready to begin.  On December 6th, 2014 Lake Charles will officially kick-off the Christmas holiday with a host of exciting events for the entire family.

Brought to you by The City of Lake Charles and SWLA Convention and Visitors Bureau, all events are free and open to the public.

Friday December 5th from 1pm - 4pm Gingerbread Houses will be on display at the Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau Welcome Center. These delicious works of art are from the annual Gingerbread Contest, were area citizens enter their compete for bragging rights for having the best Gingerbread House of the year.  The sweet creations will be judged based on theme, originality and construction and 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards will be presented Saturday December 6th, by Gumbeaux Gator. From there, the houses will remain on display the entire month of December, for everyone to enjoy.

Saturday December 6th, Santa is coming to town and will ride through downtown Lake Charles in the annual Christmas parade, which will begin at 1pm.  The parade route will travel from Mill Street, south on Ryan, concluding at 7th Street.  This years Grand Marshal will be 8-year old Carter King Sarro representing the Up-4-Downs organization which provides support, education, and vocational development, for individuals with Down Syndrome.

Lake Charles Toyota/Scion will award prizes for best floats, marching bands, decorated vehicles, right on down to specialty groups participating in the parade.  The Christmas Celebration continues at the Lake Charles Civic Center with a host of festivities immediately after the parade.  Kids 6-12-years of age, can play in Santa's Workshop from 2-5 p.m. in the Exhibition Hall.  Sponsored by Entergy, children are invited to games for prizes and gifts, plus enjoy arts & crafts, a variety food, activities, storytelling, music and much more.

Leading up to the lighting ceremony, the Lake Charles Community Band will perform Christmas classics beginning at 3:30 p.m. on the second floor Mezzanine of the Civic Center.  Then gather the family around the Civic Center front lawn to listen to Christmas carols from the Barbe High School Show Choir at 5 pm, followed by Mayor Randy Roach flipping the switch at 6 pm to "Light Up The Lake".

At 6:30 pm don't miss the annual boat parade, as area residents sail across the lake in the boats decked out in Christmas lights.  As the boats pass spectators along the Lakefront Promenade, the vessels will judged and later awarded for the best decorations and lights. Stick around for the grand finale, as the fireworks display will get underway at 7:15 p.m. officially ringing in the Christmas season.

For entry forms or more information, contact the City of Lake Charles at 337-491-9159, or click here.