The holidays are over, but here’s a reason to stay merry and bright: The Edison Festival of Light! What started as a three-day celebration of famed inventor Thomas Edison (who spent his winters in Fort Myers) has exploded into a massive weeklong party every January/February with music, dancing, races, parades and too many other things to mention.
The festival kicks off with a weekend for the kids. First on the list is the STEMtastic Day of Discovery, an expo of science, technology, engineering and math exhibits for children of all ages. Inspire the next generation of inventors with fun interactive experiments, activities and live performances.
After the expo is a smaller version of the grand parade: a junior fun run for elementary school students followed by the junior parade. Just like the grand parade, the junior parade has floats, marching bands, dancers and street performers, both for kids and by kids. The junior fun run has varying distances for each grade, and all participants get a t-shirt and a ribbon.
After the kids weekend is the main event, starting with Crafts on the River, which has over 100 vendors selling unique and handmade items over the three-day event.
Then, the big day – the 5k race followed by the grand parade! Once the race is over and the sun goes down, the parade of lights begins. It’s not called the Festival of Light for nothing: thousands of lights adorn the floats, marching bands and performers during the celebration. What better way to honor the father of the modern light bulb?
After the big night is the classic car show, where nostalgia and horsepower meet in this all-day show of retro autos. You can enjoy the classic cars, talk with their owners, and grab some food and drinks, or even go over to the craft festival. The final event of the festival is Mutt Strut, a parade for all of Fort Myers’ furry friends.
If you missed out on some of Fort Myers’ biggest Christmas events, do not fear! The Edison Festival of Lights takes place every year in January/February. And if you plan to skip out on holiday travel and stay home this year, remember that there are more Fort Myers family vacation ideas to enjoy year-round!
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