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Gulf & Main Magazine

Head to Downtown Fort Myers for its Annual New Years Eve Downtown Countdown

Dec 30, 2017 01:39PM ● Published by Kevin

The city of Fort Myers will see the annual River District Alliance New Year's Eve Downtown Countdown tomorrow, starting at 8 p.m. Ring in 2018 at Southwest Florida’s largest New Year’s Eve Celebration.

Each year, the River District Alliance helps residents celebrate the New Year with a ball drop, live music, vendors and family fun. There will be live music all night. Bands include Electric Mudd, Iconic, Marty Stokes Band and SmackDaddy. A live DJ will spin throughout the night, and Half Step Down will play in the Patio de Leon. There is also a "Junior Ball Drop" at 9 p.m. located at First and Hendry Streets with giveaways for kids.

The event's grande finale is, of course, the ball drop at midnight. The Downtown Trolleys will be running free of charge during the night, beginning at approximately 7:30 p.m., and will run until approximately 12:30 a.m. The Downtown route loops between the Oasis Condominiums and Pinchers at Edison Ford.

The celebration is the culmination of the River District Alliance's annual "RDA Holidays" experience. The entire month of December, residents have enjoyed the magic of the season in Southwest Florida during the River District’s annual downtown holiday celebration.

The River District transformed into a Floridian winter wonderland for five festive weekends of shopping, entertainment and exploration, which included family fun at events all across downtown Fort Myers.

The season kicked off with the Fort Myers Festival of Trees, held annually at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center, where more than 20 lavishly decorated trees designed by businesses and individuals in the community were displayed. Next was the Holiday Stroll and Fort Myers Art Walk, where the mayor and Santa led a stroll down First Street in a horse-drawn carriage and picked the winner of the Mayor’s Choice tree at the Festival of Trees. The week finished with Santa’s Block Party, where attendees enjoyed a variety of food truck vendors, entertainment, holiday vendors, Decorate a Cookie with Publix, and built a fun woodcraft with Home Depot, all with a visit from Santa.

In the second week, folks had the opportunity to tour the historic Murphy-Burroughs House and Langford-Kingston Home of Fort Myers homes decorated for the holidays and spent Christmas at Centennial Park, which included bounce houses, an inflatable obstacle course, and giant slide. Santa Claus paid a visit by firetruck, and the Southwest Florida Symphony performed. The city's Christmas tree was lit, as well.

Edison & Ford Holiday Nights was a major highlight in the third week, and continues through the end of the year. The winter homes, gardens, and historic buildings of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford are decorated with thousands of lights and traditional holiday decorations. On-site activities include the Children’s Holiday Tree Trail, Santa Visits, Cartooning with Artist Doug MacGregor, and more.

The Downtown Holiday Bazaar took place on Dec. 16, with 25 brick-and-mortar stores and direct sale vendors, who offered their many unique items just in time for the holidays. On Dec. 22, the Fort Myers Pet Walk at the Butterfly Estates took place with pet-themed activities. Finally, on the Car Cruise-in took place on Christmas Eve morning. The downtown streets were lined with the sight of show cars, both new and old. As always, there was music, food and more.

The New Year's Eve celebration finishes off the 2017 season of holiday fun.

The River District Alliance was formed by a group of downtown property owners, business owners and residents whose purpose was to assist in the revitalization of the historic downtown district. It works to be a common voice to our elected officials and local decision makers. Members of the nonprofit continue to be locally based merchants, residents and property owners within the boundaries of the River District (Downtown Fort Myers Redevelopment District). For more information, visit fortmyersriverdistrictalliance.com.

The Fort Myer's Downtown New Year's Eve Midnight Fireworks in 2012

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