Tag Archives: Bartow

2017 Fall & Halloween Festivities in Polk County

Look no further for fall fun! Search our list of Polk County’s 2017 Halloween happenings and autumn festivities now through early November.
 
Fall Festivities in Polk
Freepik.com
 
*Please contact event organizations, not LRC, for more information on events.
 

Recurring & Multi-Date Events:

 

Friday, September 22-Sunday, November 12

Harvest Holler Corn Maze
Location: 950 Tavares Road, Polk City 33868
Time: Begins Sept. 22, 4-8 p.m. Fridays; 12-8 p.m. Saturdays; 12-5 p.m. Sundays
Details: Admission includes an interactive corn maze, hayride, hay fort, corn cribs, tire swings, cow train, corn hole and pumpkin patch. The cost is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and $8 youth (4-12 years). Kids 3 and under are free.
 

Friday, September 29-Saturday, November 4

The Shallow Grave
Location: 701 42nd St NW, Winter Haven
Time: Begins Sept. 29, 7:30 p.m.-10:30 p.m., Fridays & Saturdays
Details: The Shallow Grave is a highly detailed spine-tingling scare-fest that brings the Central Florida area something they have been missing. An intimate in your face, fear filled environment with custom themes and movie quality sets to put you in the midst of terror unlike anything you have experienced before. The cost is $27-$43.
 

Saturday, October 7-Sunday, October 29

Pumpkin Safari
Location: Safari Wilderness Ranch, 10850 Moore Road, Lakeland
Time: Begins Oct. 7, 1-5 p.m. Saturdays & Sundays
Details: These special fall safaris include 45-minute customized vehicle tours, led by an experienced tour guides; guided walking tours of the small mammal house; visits to a free-flight aviary and petting zoo barn; one pumpkin for each visitor, which can be carved at the ranch and given to the animals for enrichment or taken home to decorate; and stops at craft and enrichment stations. Cost: $39 for one, $75 for 2, $145 for four
 

Sunday, October 8-Sunday, October 15

Polk Theatre’s Fall Movie Classics
Location: Polk Theatre, 121 Florida Ave S, Lakeland
Time: 4:30 p.m.
Details: Oct. 8 Jaws; Oct. 15 An American Werewolf in London. See events below for information on Hocus Pocus, Rocky Horror Picture Show & The Shining (Dinner & a Movie).
 

Thursday, October 12-Sunday, October 15

Lakeland Family Fair
Location: Victory Church, 1401 Griffin Rd, Lakeland
Time: Times vary (see below)
Details: Over 40 attractions including: 20+ rides, games and super food courts. Cost: $20 for unlimited rides, individual ride tickets also available.
Oct 12 (Thurs) – 5-10pm; Oct 13 (Fri) – 5-11pm; Oct 14 (Sat)- 2-11pm; Oct 15 (Sun)- 12- 9pm
 

Saturday, October 14-Tuesday, October 31

Brick-or-Treat
Location: LEGOLAND Florida Resort, Winter Haven
Time: Begins Oct. 14, 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Saturdays & Sundays & Halloween Tuesday
Details: The Halloween party #BuiltForKids returns to LEGOLAND® Florida Resort on weekends in October, featuring a LEGO® lineup of spooky, kooky, brick-tacular activities and extended park hours. Brick or Treat Presented by Shutterfly is included with park admission – no extra ticket required!
 

Friday, October 20-Sunday, October 22

Lake Mirror Classic Auto Festival
Location: Lake Mirror Promenade, Lakeland
Time: Vary over the weekend
Details: The annual event in Downtown Lakeland attracts over 40,000 spectators and draws top car collectors from across the southeast featuring a display of more than 650 show vehicles. Find the schedule at lakelandautoshow.com/schedule.
 

Friday, October 20-Saturday, October 28

Polk County Sheriff’s Haunted Jail Tour
Location: PCSO jail, 455 N. Broadway Avenue, Bartow
Time: 6-11 p.m.
Details: The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is hosting their annual Haunted Jail Tour to benefit the United Way of Central Florida. For the little ones who are too young, there will be a separate room with treats and games. Food and drink will be on sale. The tour costs $6, with proceeds going to United Way. Visitors will be taken through areas that include the morgue, infirmary, incinerator and jail.
 

Friday, October 20-Sunday, October 29

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Location: Lakeland Community Theatre, 121 S Lake Ave, Lakeland
Time: Begins Oct. 20, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays; 7:30-10 p.m. Fridays & Saturdays; 2-4:30 p.m. Sundays
Details: The brilliant tale of obsession and revenge, Sweeney Todd combines melodrama, murder – and “the worst pies in London” –with a sumptuous score by the incomparable Stephen Sondheim. Rated Mature. The cost is $22 for adults, $20 for seniors (55 & up) and $15 for children (17 & under).
 

Friday, October 20-Tuesday, October 31

Buckingham Terror Haunted House
Location: 2600 Buckingham Ave., Lakeland
Time: October 20-21, 27-28, 7:30 p.m.-11 p.m.; October 22-26, 29-31, 7:30 p.m.- 9 p.m.
Details: Buckingham Terror is a Haunted House that gives teens an avenue to express their creativity through the planning, building and implementation of a full working haunted house. Cost: $8 for 13 & up; $5 for 12 & under. Not intended for children under 10 or the faint of heart.
 

Begins Friday, October 20

Zombie Farm Paintball Hayride
Location: Smith Family Ranch, 13444 Moore Road, Lakeland
Time: Beginning Oct. 20, 7-10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays
Details: Zombie Farm Paintball is a 20 minute hayride, in the dark, that takes you through Zombie Farm’s infectious zones. There have been reports of the living dead lurking in the night, especially around swampy areas. The ranch will supply you with a paintball gun for your protection against these creatures. Admission includes live zombies to shoot at, use of a paintball gun, 200 rounds of ammo and a narrated hayride. The cost is $30 per person.
 

Begins Saturday, October 21

CornFusion Crop Maze & Fall Festival
Location: Smith Family Ranch, 13444 Moore Road, Lakeland
Time: Begins Oct. 21, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays & Sundays
Details: Join the Smith Family Ranch for a fun-filled day at CornFusion Fall Festival where you will find 20 acres of fun for all ages including a pumpkin patch, corn box, corn cannon, country store, cow train, miniature mazes, pony rides, and farm animals. Cost: $10 for adults, $9 for 4-15 yrs, Free for 3 & under and military, law enforcement, firefighters, EMS
 

Friday, October 27-Saturday, October 28

Rocky Horror Picture Show
Location: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: Part begins at 9pm; Movie at midnight
Details: Let’s do the TIME WARP again…The Polk Theatre continues its tradition of showing the ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW and will feature the Original Lipstick Players as the Shadow Cast under the direction of Ferdinand DeJesus. Tickets are on sale online and in the office (9-5). $15 Prop bags will be available at the Door $5.
 

Saturday, October 27-Sunday, October 29

Pioneer Days Festival
Location: Lake Wailes, Lake Wales
Time: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday; 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Sunday
Details: There will be live entertainment on stage both days. Living history re-enactments, artisan and tradesmen demonstrations, pony rides, children’s activities, a Historic Architecture Carriage Tour, and an Antique Car Parade will showcase the weekend’s festivities.
 

Friday, November 3-Sunday, November 5

St. Joseph’s Annual Fall Carnival
Location: St. Joseph, 210 West Lemon Street, Lakeland
Time: Friday, 5-11 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Details: Check out St. Joseph’s annual fall carnival for fun! The cost of a day pass is $15 pre-sale or $20 at the gate.
 
Fall Events in Polk
Freepik.com
 

Single Date-Events:

Friday, October 6

Downtown Lakeland’s First Friday
Location: Munn Park in Downtown Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: This monthly event offers guests an evening of free family-friendly entertainment, activities, live music, art receptions, a car show, and the opportunity to visit a great, locally-owned restaurant or retail establishment. Each month, First Friday has a different theme, and special activities are provided to complement the theme. October’s theme will be “Celebrating Us, #LoveLakeland”.
 
Halloween Boo-gie Night Party
Location: Medulla Resource Center, 1049 Parker Road, Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Dance the night away at Polk County Parks & Recreation’s Halloween dance party. This free family event will feature a DJ, face-painting, a trick or treat village, coloring contests and a costume contest.
 

Saturday, October 7

Horror Fest
Location: Munn Park, Lakeland
Time: 4-9 p.m.
Details: Join us for the 3rd Annual Horror Fest in Downtown Lakeland for free family activities, vendors and the main stage event, sure to entertain all ages.
 

Thursday, October 12

Zombie Food Truck Rally
Location: Munn Park, Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Crawl on over to the October Downtown Lakeland Food Truck Rally and ZOMBIE bar crawl! Attendees are welcome to dressed in their best zombie garb to win prizes, and the bar crawl will begin at the conclusion of the food truck rally from 9pm-11pm.
 

Friday, October 13

Aqua Boo
Location: Gandy Pool, 404 Imperial Blvd., Lakeland
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Join for a family fun evening at the pool featuring games, nachos and a kid-friendly movie. Normal pool entry of $4 or pass applies
Halloween Trick-or-Treat Party
Location: Wilfred Smith Resource Center, Winter Haven
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Polk County Parks and Recreation presents this free Halloween party featuring music, light refreshments, arts & crafts, coloring contests and costume contests.
 
Main Street Winter Haven Oktoberfest
Location: Central Park, Winter Haven
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Join Main Street Winter Haven for the 11th Annual Oktoberfest sponsored by Victor Smith Law Group, P.A. and featuring beer, brats and live music. A Tasting Ticket is $25.
 
Pumpkinfest
Location: Winter Haven City Library, 325 Avenue A NW
Time: 5:30-9 p.m.
Details: Main Street Winter Haven, Inc will be hosting Oktoberfest for adults, while the City of Winter Haven will be hosting Pumpkinfest for children in kindergarten – 5th grade. Drop off your child or children while you attend Oktoberfest; they will enjoy games, decorating pumpkins and dinner. Cost: $10/child
 

Wednesday, October 18

Pep Homecoming Parade & Festival
Location: MILK Park on Lake Silver, Winter Haven
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Join the Public Education Partnership of Winter Haven, area schools and local organizations at the PEP Homecoming Parade & Festival. In addition to the parade and festival, there will be a performance by the Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team and a firework display.
 

Friday, October 20

Fall Festival of Fun
Location: Winter Haven Recreational & Cultural Center
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Bring your family out to Winter Haven Recreational & Cultural Center for a night of games, candy, refreshments, prizes, and more. Ages 6 – 13. This event is free.
 
Joggin’ for the Noggin 5K
Location: Polk State College – Lakeland, 3425 Winter Lake Rd
Time: 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Details: The 6th Annual Joggin’ for the Noggin! 5K to benefit Polk State College Foundation promises to be a fun and SCARY, Halloween themed race. Run, jog or walk this 3.1 race that includes gravel road, grass and a trek on the Fort Fraser Trail. The One Mile Walkin’ while Talkin’ is an option for those who want to support Polk students, but aren’t race enthusiasts. The run and walk will feature zombies on the trail to put pep in steps. This is a family-friendly event and will include a children’s fun run, adult and children’s costume contest, Zumba, face painting, music, and more.
 
The Story of An Undead World: A Rock Opera
Location: LKLD LIVE (STUDIO B, 202 N Mass Ave., Lakeland)
Time: 8-10 p.m.
Details: Born from the mind of Matthew Davis and Joshua McNair comes The Story of an Undead World. A musical with a heavy brutal experience that is like no other. Tickets available $5 advance.
 

Saturday, October 21

FallFest 2017
Location: Polk State College, 999 Avenue H NE, Winter Haven
Time: 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: Thousands trek to the campus each third Saturday in October to enjoy the event that features a craft show, the Kids Zone, music, police and EMS demonstrations, the Pumpkin Patch, food, Haunted House and more.
 
Fall Craft Fair & Sale
Location: Presbyterian Church in the Highlands, Lakeland
Time: 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: The 30th Annual Fall Craft Sale at Presbyterian Church in the Highlands will host 50 artisans, a baked good sale with sweets of all kinds, jams, and refreshments, concessions, and Lakeland’s Finest Pumpkin Patch. Proceeds benefit local charities.
 
Florida Dance Theatre Presents Dracula
Location: Branscomb Auditorium, Florida Southern College
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: Join Florida Dance Theatre as they unearth a deadly foe at their first full-length ballet of the season, “Dracula”. This sensational selection has just the right amount of spooky, scary, and fun to make it entertaining for all. Cost is: $75
 
Haunted Halloween Hayride & Happenings
Location: Loyce E. Harpe Park, 500 W. Carter Road, Mulberry
Time: 5 – 10 p.m.
Details: Polk County Parks & Recreation’s 21st Annual Haunted Halloween Hayride & Happenings event offers a fun and safe alternative to traditional “trick or treating” while offering attractions such as a hayride to a haunted walking trail, carnival games, live entertainment, a trick or treat village, costume contest and pie -eating contest. Advance tickets on sale Oct. 2 – Oct. 20 and include a hayride wristband.
 
Hocus Pocus at the Polk Theatre
Location: Polk Theatre, 121 Florida Avenue S, Lakeland
Time: 11:30 a.m.-1:05 p.m.
Details: Join the Polk Theatre for a showing of the 1993 Halloween film, Hocus Pocus. Rated PG. The cost is $5.
 
Rootstock Plant & Garden Festival
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Details: Bok Tower Gardens’ signature fall plant sale debuts ROOTSTOCK featuring dozens of plant vendors, local musical artists, healthy cuisine and a spectacular display of seasonal foliage. This festival marks the start of Florida’s gardening season, and admission is free both days. Cost: $10
 

Thursday, October 26

75th Annual Crickette Club Parade & Carnival
Location: Downtown Bartow & Mosaic Park, Bartow
Time: 4-8 p.m.
Details: Bartow’s favorite family tradition is better than ever featuring rides for tots and teens, expanded food selections including food trucks, new games, costume contest for store-bought and homemade, Crickette Club’s famous cake walk, drawing for $500, $300, and $100 Visa cards, Bingo and more. All proceeds benefit the Bartow area Girl Scouts and the Bartow Community. Parade is free with the Carnival to follow at Mosaic Park.
 
Safe Haven Halloween
Location: Freedom Park, Polk City
Time: 5-8:30 p.m.
Details: Join in the annual spooky fun for the entire family featuring free popcorn and candy, delicious food, a cupcake walk for tiny tots, carnival games and prizes, tug-o-war, three legged races, potato-sack races, and costume contests.
 

Friday, October 27

Halloween Spooktacular
Location: Wabash Community Center, 1230 Southern Ave., Lakeland
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: This Polk County Parks & Rec event is free and will feature costume and coloring contests, trick or treating, and more.
 
Hold On, I know This! Halloween Edition
Location: Lkld Live (Studio B, 202N Massachusetts Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 7:30-9 p.m.
Details: Nick Allred & Benedict Heaps return to host a special Halloween themed installment of the funniest quiz show in town. Tickets $10 adv / $15 day of show
 
Spooktoberfest
Location: Eloise Resource Center, 710 Snively Ave., Eloise
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: This Polk County Parks & Rec event is free and will feature costume and coloring contests, trick or treating, and more.
 
The Nightmare Before Christmas – Movie on the Lawn
Location: 100 E Main St, Bartow
Time: 6:45 p.m.
Details: Bring your blanket or chairs to Main Street Bartow for an outdoor showing of The Nightmare Before Christmas on the lawn. Restaurants open for carry out or bring a picnic dinner. Movie begins at dusk. The cost is free.
 

Saturday, October 28

20th Annual Lakeland Hispanic Festival
Location: Lake Mirror Promenade, Lakeland
Time: 12-8 p.m.
Details: Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month during the 20th Annual Hispanic Festival of Lakeland featuring traditional and contemporary Latin American culture with live performances, authentic cuisine and children’s activities. Cost: adults $5.00, children 12 and under free
 
Evil Never Dies – Murder Mystery Dinner
Location: Ramon Theater, 15 E Wall St, Frostproof
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: Enjoy a dinner at the theater while trying to solve this fall-themed murder mystery. Tickets cost $40.
 
Ghouls Day Out
Location: MLK Jr. Park, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: The City of Winter Haven presents this free event including a kid’s game area, music, a Halloween costume contest, food vendors and a trick-or-treat village.
 
Halloween Festival
Location: Lewis Matthews Complex, 400 E. Palm Street, Davenport
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Enjoy free hot dogs and drinks, trunk or treat, costume contests, Touch a Truck, and games & activities.
 
Halloween Water Ski Show
Location: Lake Silver, Winter Haven
Time: 7 p.m.
Details: Enjoy this special ‘Spooktacular’ Ski Show on Lake Silver by the Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team. There will be a costume contest before the show at 7 p.m. for ages 0-16. Free.
 
Harvest Festival
Location: Spence Field, 1100 NE 1st Street, Mulberry
Time: 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Details: Enjoy a night of fun featuring vendors, pony rides, hay rides, candy, trunk-or-treat, games, a hay bale maze and a Bluegrass band!
 
Lakeside Village Halloween Bash
Location: Lakeside Village, Lakeland
Time: 5-8 p.m.
Details: The event will feature three costume contests for kids in different age groups, a DJ hosting games with kid-friendly music, face painting, a photo booth, a strolling magician and fun prizes! There also will be trick or treating throughout the village. The event is free.
 
Monster Mash Costume Party
Location: Lkld Live (Studio B, 202 N Mass Ave., Lakeland)
Time: 7-11 p.m.
Details: Grab to ticket to this special Halloween fundraiser for the opportunity to perform on the LkldLive stage. There will be a lip sync battle and karaoke all night with prizes for best costumes throughout the evening. The best way to pre-party for your Saturday night Halloween extravaganza! Tickets $5 adv / $10 day of event
 
Munn Park Extravaganza
Location: Munn Park, Lakeland
Time: 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: The 33rd Annual “Munn Park Extravaganza”, presented by the Garden Club of Lakeland Inc. will offer over 50 vendors featuring a variety of plants, flowers, trees, and garden-related art for sale. A new plant introduction will be presented by Bill Koen from the City of Lakeland Parks and Recreation.
 

Sunday, October 29

Fall Festival
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 3 p.m.- 6 p.m.
Details: NorthRidge Church present this annual fall festival featuring your same favorite free elements and a few extras such as inflatables, food, games, train rides, Ident-A-Kid, Fire Department exhibits, by the Polk County Sherriff’s Office SWAT and Rescue teams, and candy.
 
Fall Festival
Location: Scott Lake Baptist Church, 5811 Scott Lake Rd, Lakeland
Time: 4-6 p.m.
Details: This fall festival is a Halloween alternative for families that want to make one stop for all the fun, food, and candy they desire for Halloween. Scott Lake Baptist will have plenty of candy, car show, inflatables, dodgeball, gaga ball, hot dogs, snow cones, popcorn, and more. Free event.
 
Family Fall Festival
Location: Beymer Church, 700 Lake Howard Dr. NW, Winter Haven
Time: 3-5 p.m.
Details: Stop by for free food, games, candy, a chili cook-off and more.
 
Harvest Party – Fall Festival
Location: Kathleen Baptist Church, 3939 2nd St. NW, Lakeland
Time: 5-7 p.m.
Details: You and your family are invited. There will be food, games, candy, bounce houses, horses, and much more.
 
Trunk or Treat 2017
Location: First United Methodist Church of Lakeland, 72 Lake Morton Dr., Lakeland
Time: 4-7 p.m.
Details: This fall has been tough for our community and many families have experienced disruption and trauma. Take a break from the stresses of storm recovery, and take a photo in the pumpkin patch or at one of our photo booths and enjoy dinner, games and candy in a safe environment. Family-friendly costumes for children are welcome. Adults, please refrain from costumes with masks.
 
Trunk or Treat
Location: Highland Park Church, 4777 Lakeland Highlands Rd, Lakeland
Time: 6-7 p.m.
Details: Bring your family and friends to Trunk or Treat with us at Highland Park Church. Enjoy a little time out with your family at this free, safe, and fun community event. Kona Ice will be here to help keep you cool.
 

Tuesday, October 31

6th Annual Fall Festival
Location: 124 S. Kentucky Ave., Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: The 6th Annual Fall Festival Celebration presented by Just Cares, Inc. is a free, community event. The goal is to fill the streets in Downtown Lakeland with families looking for an alternative to Halloween by providing a safe environment where they can have fun and spend quality time as a family.
 
Boo! Bash
Location: Explorations V, Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; 4-6 p.m.
Details: Celebrate safely during a fun-filled morning of Halloween games, food and activities for the youngest crowd. Join in by wearing kid-friendly costumes. Included with admission/membership.
 
Dinner & a Movie – The Shining
Location: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Enjoy dinner featuring a menu of ribs, chicken, Johnny Cakes, beans, redrum & Jack Daniels cupcakes, popcorn and a drink and then enjoy the featured film, The Shining. Tickets are $22 for dinner & a movie or $5 for the movie only.
 
Halloween Flashlight Egg Hunt
Location: Simpson Park Community Center, 1725 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., Lakeland
Time: 7:30-9 p.m.
Details: Join the Parks & Recreation Department for a fun, free, safe event at the Simpson Park Community Center on Halloween. There will be fun group activities inside and then an egg hunt outside for Halloween treats. BYOF (Bring Your Own Flashlight)
 
Mall-O-Ween
Location: Eagle Ridge Mall, Lake Wales
Time: 5-8 p.m.
Details: Bring your ghouls and goblins to Eagle Ridge Mall for a SPOOKtacular evening of free family fun, music, games, prizes and sweet treats! Get your photo taken to enter the costume contest. Five finalists from each age group (0-5, 5-13 and 14+), and shoppers will vote for their favorites from November 2-9th in the food court. 1st-3rd Place gift card prizes will be given in each age group (1st: $100, 2nd: $50, 3d: $25).
 
Trunk or Treat Annual Fall Festival
Location: Trinity Christian Center, 4416 E County Road 540A, Lakeland
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: This free event will feature food, games, bounce houses, a photo booth, face painting, balloon animal and candy.
 

Saturday, November 4

Belk Charity Day Sale
Location: Belk at Lakeside Village
Time: 6-10 a.m. (and later)
Details: Purchase your $5 Charity Sale ticket to support the Learning Resource Center or other local organizations and schools. Get $5 off your first purchase and save on rarely discounted brands! The first 100 customers to arrive on Saturday, Nov. 4 will receive a free gift card. The pre-sale dates are Oct. 23 – Nov. 3. Pick up your ticket at the Learning Resource Center or other participating organizations.
 
Fall-O-Ween-Fest
Location: East Park Complex, Dundee
Time: 10 a.m.- 2p.m.
Details: Bring the family out for fall festivities.
 
Kathleen Area Historical Society’s Fall Bazaar
Location: Heritage Park, Kathleen, 8950 N Campbell Rd. Lakeland
Time: 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Enjoy this Kathleen tradition where you’ll find cane grinding/syrup making, a pioneer life exhibit, rummage sale, children’s activities, live music, food and more. Vendors and other nonprofit organizations will be in attendance. Admission is free.
 

Saturday, November 11

Lakeland LuLaPalooza
Location: R.P. Funding Center, Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: Come out to this amazing LuLaRoe shopping opportunity featuring 30 consultants and more than 20,000 pieces of inventory.
 
Red Ribbon Half Marathon, 5K and Kids Fun Run
Where: Lake Mirror Promenade, Lakeland
Time: 6:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: The Red Ribbon Half Marathon, 5K & Kids Fun Run, presented by Title Sponsor Publix Super Markets, Inc., is a family event where adults can compete in the Half Marathon or 5K, and children can participate in the Kids Fun Run. We invite the community to join in the exciting 2017 Red Ribbon events on Saturday, November 11th that include a special tribute to our area’s Veterans.
 
The Big Event
Location: Frances Ford Langford Promenade at Lake Mirror Amphitheatre, Lakeland
Time: 4-10 p.m.
Details: The BIG Event Lakeland is a free music fest featuring local businesses, makers and delicious food. The event kicks off with the Red Ribbon Run Corporate Award and the Watson Clinic Poster Contest Award, immediately followed by a special Salute to Veterans by Green Construction. Then, enjoy non-stop entertainment.
 
 
Related Posts:
2016 Fall Festivals & Events
2015 Fall Festivals & Events
 
 

LRC Named Polk’s 2017 Best Learning Center

The Learning Resource Center has been named Polk County’s Best Learning Center of 2017.
 
LRC learned of this distinction at The Ledger’s awards ceremony on the evening of September 21 at the R.P. Funding Center. The top three winners of each category were first revealed leading up to the announcement of overall winners.
 
The Ledger created The Best of the Best awards in 2016. Adding new categories including the Learning Center/Tutor category, the 2017 contest gave the public the opportunity to vote for their favorites in 149 categories during two installments. In the first round, individuals were able to submit their nomination daily in any or all of the 149 categories, which ranged from education and dining to shopping and services (among others). The second round began in mid July and allowed voters the chance to select one of the top five nominations in each category daily over two weeks. More than 450,000 votes were cast throughout the competition. Succeeding the two rounds, The Ledger revealed the best local business winners during a banquet in late September. The winners were also published in the newspaper following the ceremony.
 

 
About LRC
The Learning Resource Center of Polk County, Inc. is a nonprofit, United Way educational provider. LRC has a proud 42-year history of offering high-quality academic programs to help students maximize their learning potential. For more information, please visit LRC online at LRCPolk.com or call 863.688.9477.

Camp READY! 2017 Serves 354 Kindergartners

Serving Young Learners In Polk

Nine county-wide campsites were vibrant learning environments for a record number of rising or struggling kindergartners. Camp READY! 2017 took place at sites in Frostproof, Fort Meade, Lake Wales, Bartow, Haines City, Lakeland and Winter Haven throughout June and July. This successful four-week camp helped to prepare rising and repeating kindergartners for academic success this coming school year.
LRC Camp Ready Kindergarten readiness
 
Campers demonstrated learning gains averaging four to five months with some scores indicating one year or more of growth in expressive or receptive vocabulary, huge increases for five year-old children. Other successes were demonstrated in listening, attending and focusing, following directions, and social skills.
 
Eight camps were underwritten with United Way monies, and one camp was funded by a Givewell Community Foundation donor.
 
 

Polk 2017-2018 Schools Dates to Remember

POLK COUNTY 2017-2018 SCHOOL CALENDAR

Curious about Polk County Public School dates such as the first and last days, student holidays and early release days? Interested in finding out assessment dates for the 2017-2018 school year? Scroll down to find a list of significant calendar dates affecting your PCSB student.
freepik back to school calendar
Graphic by Freepik
 

2017

August 10 First day of school
September 4 School Holiday- Labor Day
September 13 EARLY RELEASE DAY
September 18 Student Holiday
October 16 Student Holiday
November 10 School Holiday – Veterans’ Day
November 20-24 School Holiday – Thanksgiving Break
December 22-January 3 School Holiday – Winter Break

 

2018

January 4 First day back after Winter Break
January 15 School Holiday – MLK, Jr. Day
February 19 School Holiday – Presidents’ Day
March 26-30 School Holiday – Spring Break
May 24 Last day of school

 
Please note that Oct. 11, 2017, Nov. 15, 2017, Jan. 24, 2018, Feb. 7, 2018, March 14, 2018 and May 16, 2018 were originally Early Release Days. Due to Hurricane Irma, these days are now regular full days.
 
For more information on the school calendar, upcoming events or Polk school information, please visit the Polk County Public Schools website where we obtained this information.
 
 

2017-2018 Assessment Schedule

 

Date Assessment
September 18-October 6 FSA EOC Algebra 1; Geometry
September 18-October 20 NGSSS EOC Biology 1; Civics; U.S. History
November 27-December 15 FSA EOC Algebra 1; Geometry NGSSS EOC Biology 1; Civics; U.S. History
March 1-9 FSA ELA Writing
April 9-May 11 FSA ELA Reading
April 16-May 11 FSA Math
April 16-May 11 FSA EOC Algebra 1; Geometry NGSSS EOC Biology 1; Civics; U.S. History
April 30-May 4 NGSSS Science (5th & 8th)
July 17-21 FSA EOC Algebra 1; Geometry NGSSS EOC Biology 1; Civics; U.S. History

Click for more Polk County testing information.
 

If you feel that your child needs help preparing for these assessments, please do not hesitate to contact us to set up One-to-One Tutoring.

 

LRC Students Received 3,587 Hours of Tutoring in April and May 2017

In the month of April, Learning Resource Center students received 1,702 hours of tutoring, with a Year-To-Date Total of 10,617 hours (the YTD totals start over every July). New and ongoing students tutored during the month of April equaled 407 students.
 
April Tutoring Hours LRC Polk County

 
In May, Learning Resource Center students received 1,885 hours of tutoring, with a Year-To-Date Total of 12,502 hours (the YTD totals start over every July). New and ongoing students tutored during the month of May equaled 449 students.
 
May Tutoring Hours LRC Polk County
 
 
Thanks to all of our tutors and students for your time, efforts, and hard work. It’s paying off!
 
If you’re interested in participating in One-to-One Tutoring, please visit LRCPolk.com/programs/one-to-one-tutoring.
 
 
Related Posts:
February/March 2017 Tutoring Report
January 2017 Tutoring Report
October 2016 Tutoring Report
August/September 2016 Tutoring Report
August/September 2016 Tutoring Report
July 2016 Tutoring Report
June 2016 Tutoring Report
April 2016 Tutoring Report
March 2016 Tutoring Report
 

#KeepKidsLearning at Super Summer Success

Your elementary student can gain important skills in reading and math at LRC’s Super Summer Success. Keep kids learning over the summer with this program designed to build confident, successful students through time-tested best practices.
 

Offered to students who have completed either kindergarten, first, second, third, fourth or fifth grade, Super Summer Success helps students explore academics and the arts through interaction, review and hands-on, high-interest activities.
 
The program will return to South McKeel Academy in Lakeland on Monday, June 12-Thursday, June 29 from 8 a.m.-12 p.m., Monday-Thursday.
 
Students will be able to: explore math through writing and drawing, engage in cooking and creative art projects, share in read-and-respond activities, create make-and-take projects on key ideas and savor brain-healthy snacks to keep energy up.
 
The classes will be small and divided by level. The cost is $315 for the entire program. LRC also offers a sliding fee scale based on gross, annual household income.Super Summer Success Elementary Camp
 
To register, please visit LRC Polk-Super Summer Success. For more information, please call LRC at 863-688-9477.
 
If your child needs a little extra review this summer, Super Summer Success is the program for them!
 
 
Related Posts:
LRC Offers Summer Programs for All Grade Levels
Camp Discovery to Provide Students Learning Adventures at All Saints Academy
 
 

LRC Offers Summer Programs for All Grade Levels

LRC is rolling out its lineup of 2017 summer enrichment programs for kindergarten through high school grade levels.
 
Scroll down to find out about each program and to find the one that best suits you or your student.
 

Kindergarten-Readiness

Rising and repeating kindergartners can gain the skills necessary for school at LRC’s Camp READY! featuring multi-sensory learning experiences in a fun, engaging format at ten locations throughout Polk County. On average, Camp READY! students who attend the full program demonstrate learning gains of seven months in vocabulary development. Camps will take place for four weeks during June 6-July 28, 2017. Dates and times vary by site. The cost is $25 for the entire month.
Camp Ready Winter Haven parent program

 

Elementary Academic Camps

Students entering 1st- 5th grade are invited to Camp Discovery at All Saints Academy in Winter Haven. Camps will focus on critical thinking, reading, writing, science and math skills, offering students four, week-long camps during June 5-30, 2017, Monday-Friday. Choose half-day camp from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. for $140 per week or full-day from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. for $200 per week.
 
Students entering 1st-6th grade are encouraged to attend Super Summer Success, an enrichment program that helps students maintain their mental momentum throughout the summer with a fun and active approach to reading, writing and math. Super Summer Success will take place June 12-29, 2017, Monday-Thursday, from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. at South McKeel Academy in Lakeland. The full cost is $315.
 

Study Skills

Middle school and high school students may consider study skills courses that provide motivational strategies and study techniques to become more effective learners. Study Habits of Successful Students for grades 6-8 will take place July 10-14, 2017 from 9:30-11:30 a.m., while Get the Competitive Edge…College Success Planning for grades 9-12 will take place July 10-14, 2017 from 1-3 p.m. Both will be held at the Learning Resource Center in Lakeland. The cost for each is $145.
 

Test Prep

High School students will benefit from LRC’s ACT and SAT summer test preparation courses. Preparation courses are designed to build confident, successful students, helping them achieve their best possible score through problem-solving strategies tailored towards each test. The ACT Summer Prep Course will take place July 17-21, 2017 (9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. for the full course) at the Learning Resource Center, while the SAT Summer Prep Course will take place July 24-27, 2017 (9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. for the full course) at the Learning Resource Center in Lakeland. The cost of each full course is $440 and includes a book.
 

Tutoring

In addition to the courses and camps mentioned, LRC also continues One-to-One Tutoring services for students of all ages who feel they need an extra boost during the summer months. With more than 500 tutors throughout Polk County who are able to help students in numerous subjects or prepare for various assessments, LRC will find a tutor that can meet your academic need in your area.
 

Information

LRC offers a sliding fee scale based on the gross annual household income. Scholarships are also available for families with documented financial need for any of these programs. For additional information or to enroll, please click on the program link above or call LRC at 863-688-9477.
 
 

2016 Holiday Events in Polk County

Are you looking for holiday events in Polk County? We’ve compiled a list of fun, family-friendly, events taking place this December just for you!
 
Check back frequently. We’ll be adding to the list as we find events.
 
freepik happy holidaysFreepik.com
 

Ongoing/Recurring Events

Festival of Wreaths
Date: Friday, November 18-Saturday, December 10
Location: Polk County History Center, Bartow
Time: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Details: Take in the sights and sounds of the season and enjoy the Sixth Annual Festival of Wreaths. The striking wreaths that fill the halls of the History Center are decorated and donated by local businesses, individuals and organizations. The wreaths will be on display through Dec. 10. On opening night, the History Center will be open from 6-8 p.m. as part of Main Street Bartow’s Magic on Main Street activities.
 
Snowy Wonderland
Date: Friday, November 25-Saturday, December 24
Location: Lakeside Village, Lakeland
Time: 5-9 p.m., Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays
Details: Catch real snowflakes whirling around the Lakeside Village Christmas tree for 5 minutes on the hour from 5pm-9pm.
 
Christmas Carillon Concerts
Date: Friday, November 25-Sunday, January 8
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 1-3 p.m. Thursday through Sunday
Details: Immerse yourself in the sounds of the season as Carillonneur Geert D’hollander performs Christmas music from around the world during 30-minute live concerts every Thursday through Sunday on the 60-bell Singing Tower carillon. Celebrate Christmas Day with Bok Tower Gardens as sounds of the carillon ring out during a live performance. Included with general Gardens admission
 
Winter Walking Tours
Date: Friday, November 25-Sunday, January 8
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. Monday through Saturday; 2:00 p.m. Sundays
Details: Volunteers lead visitors on an hour-long winter walking tour, sharing information about the flora and fauna and guiding visitors through the Gardens from the Visitor Center to the Singing Tower. Included with general Gardens admission.
 
Elves Shelves Gift Shop
Date: Saturday, November 26-Sunday, December 11
Location: Polk Museum of Art, Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; 1:00 p.m.-5:00 pm Sunday
Details: This special secret shop is for children only! Gifts will be reasonably priced for children to purchase holiday items for family and friends. Elves Shelves fun includes a wrapping station. Admission is free. Prices vary per item.
 
Gingerbread Houses with Mrs. Claus
Date: Sunday, November 27-Sunday, December 11
Location: Pinewood Estate at Bok Tower Gardens
Time: 2-4 p.m.
Details: Join Bok Tower at their first annual gingerbread house event to decorate your own gingerbread house and take a tour of the Pinewood house. Each participant will receive their own gingerbread house to decorate and storybook to take home, which will be read by Mrs. Claus herself. $40 per child includes Gardens and Holiday Home Tour admission, gingerbread house and storybook, and one chaperone.
 
1940s HoliDAYS
Date: Tuesdays: November 29, December 6, 13, 20, 27
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Be sure to see the vintage Model A’s outside Pinewood Estate, meet historical characters from the 1940s, and catch a few surprise personalities from the past. Tuesdays throughout December. Included with general Gardens admission.
 
Almost, Maine
Date: Thursday, December 1- Sunday, December 18
Location: Theatre Winter Haven
Time: 7:30 p.m. or 2:30 p.m. depending on date
Details: On a cold, clear, moonless night in the middle of winter, all is not quite what it seems in the remote, mythical town of Almost, Maine. As the northern lights hover in the star-filled sky above, Almost’s residents find themselves falling in and out of love in unexpected and often hilarious ways. Knees are bruised. Hearts are broken. But the bruises heal, and the hearts mend—almost—in this delightful midwinter night’s dream. Tickets are $21 for adults and $17 for students.
 
Lights of Lakeland
Date: Friday-Sunday: December 2-4; December 9-11
Location: Highland Park Church, Lakeland
Time: 6:30 p.m.- 9 p.m.
Details: This free walk-thru Christmas experience is one the whole family can enjoy! Experience an evening of excitement filled with your favorite holiday sights, smells, sounds and over 500,000 lights.
 
Florida Flywheelers Christmas in the Village
Date: Friday & Saturday: December 9-10; December 16-17
Location: 7000 Avon Park Cutoff Road, Fort Meade, FL 33841
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: The best kept Christmas secret around…the Florida Flywheelers bring a holiday village of sparkling lights, refreshments, & Santa & Mrs. Claus to their tractor site located between Avon Park and Fort Meade. Families can journey through the village on a tram pulled by a tractor while enjoying fun Christmas displays. There are also stops for free hotdogs, cookies, hot chocolate, eggnog and cider along the way. Admission is a monetary or toy donation.
 
Holiday Workshop
Date: Monday, December 19-Friday, December 23
Location: Explorations V Children’s Museum (109 N Kentucky Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. & 1-5 p.m.
Details: Decorations and holiday fun for kids of all ages. From 9 a.m.-1 p.m. will be Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen featuring cookies, candy, and more. From 1-5 p.m. will be Santa’s Workshops featuring gifts for family & friends. The cost is $25 for a half day or $40 for a full day.
 
Winter Wonderland Workshops
Date: Monday, December 26-Friday, December 30
Location: Explorations V Children’s Museum (109 N Kentucky Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Details: Decorations and holiday fun for kids of all ages including frozen art, science and games. The cost is $25 for a half day or $40 for a full day.
 
Christmas Bricktacular
Date: Saturday, December 17-Sunday, December 18; Saturday, December 24-Friday, December 30
Location: LEGOLAND Florida, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; 10 a.m.-8 p.m. (December 25-30)
Details: Bring in the holiday season with a 30-foot tall LEGO Christmas tree made of 270,000 LEGO bricks, life-size LEGO Santa, reindeer and sleigh, festive decorations, LEGO build activity, a LEGO Santa Scavenger Hunt, holiday entertainment and nightly fireworks. LEGO Santa and LEGO Toy Soldier make daily appearances in the Park providing a perfect family photo opportunity.
 
Week Before Christmas Movies at the Polk Theatre
Date: Sunday, December 18-Friday, December 23, 2016
Location: Polk Theatre (121 South Florida Ave., Lakeland)
Time: Times vary by date. See below.
Details: All movies are $5.00.
Dec. 18: It’s a Wonderful Life, 5:30-7:45 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 19: White Christmas, 6:30-8:30 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 20: Elf, 6:30-8 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 21: Die Hard, 6:30-8:45 p.m. (R)
Dec. 22: A Christmas Story, 6:30-8 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 23: Christmas Vacation, 6:30-8 p.m. (PG-13)
 
Winter Ice Skating
Date: Tuesday, December 20-Sunday, January 1
Location: The Lakeland Center (George Jenkins Arena)
Time: Times vary by date.
Details: Public ice skating returns to The Lakeland Center this winter with morning, afternoon, evening, and late evening sessions on various days. Click the title link to see times and dates.
 

Library Events

Cult Movie Classics: Krampus
Date: Tuesday, December 6
Location: Lakeland Public Library (100 Lake Morton Drive, Lakeland)
Time: 7 p.m.
Details: Join the Lakeland Public Library for a free movie and snacks. December’s showing is Krampus. Most of our movies are intended for adults, however children and teens are allowed if accompanied by an adult.
 
Holidazed Craft Night
Date: Thursday, December 8
Location: Lakeland Public Library
Time: 7-8:30 p.m.
Details: Join the Lakeland Public Library to decorate festive coffee mugs. All supplies are provided for this free event but registration is required.
 
Santa’s Workshop
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Lakeland Public Library
Time: 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Stop by the library for Christmas-themed fun.
 
Holiday Concert with Sandy’s Music Girls & Friends
Date: Tuesday, December 20
Location: Lake Wales Public Library (290 Cypress Garden Lane)
Time: 2-3 p.m.
Details: Enjoy beautiful holiday music performed by talented young musicians.
 
Holiday Movies in the Library
Date: Thursday, December 22
Location: Lake Wales Public Library (290 Cypress Garden Lane)
Time: 11 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Details: Enjoy festive movies at the Lake Wales Public Library.
 

Community Events

Lights in the Park
Date: Thursday, December 1
Location: Downtown Auburndale
Time: 5 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Join the City of Auburndale for entertainment, refreshments and tree-lighting with a surprise visit from Santa Claus. The Historic Baynard House will be open for holiday tours.
 
First Friday – Holiday Hometown
Date: Friday, December 2
Location: Downtown Lakeland
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Free holiday-themed family-friendly entertainment, activities, live music, art reception, car show, and more.
 
An Enchanted Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Gardner Park, Lake Alfred
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Details: Join Lake Alfred at their Christmas parade and tree lighting. The parade route remains the same from last year. The parade will start at Central Park at the corner of Cummings and Glencruiten and will head west on Cummings to 17/92 and end at Gardner Park. Hot chocolate and cookies will be provided at Gardner Park for the Christmas tree lighting.
 
Breakfast with Santa – Auburndale
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Auburndale Civic Center
Time: 9-11 a.m.
Details: Auburndale Parks and Recreation presents the annual breakfast with Santa event. Admission is $8. Tickets are available at the Auburndale Parks and Recreation department.
 
Carols in the Park
Date: Saturday, December 3-Sunday, December 4
Location: Central Park, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Details: This is the 28th Annual Carols in the Park Holiday Market. The event includes handmade craft vendors, Polk County Schools participating by performing holiday programs, free photos with Santa, free kids crafts and carriage rides!
 
Glitter, Glisten & Snow
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 5-9 p.m.
Details: Join the City of Haines City for a fun-filled event for all ages featuring thousands of lights, snow slides, children’s entertainment, arts & crafts vendors, food vendors and a chance to meet Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Admission is free.
 
Jingle Bark Pet Festival
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Regional Park (50901 U.S. 27, Davenport)
Time: 12-4 p.m.
Details: This free event is for leashed pets and their owners. It will feature pet supplies, food vendors, pet photos with Santa, pet contests and mobile grooming.
 
SnowFest
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Downtown Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Join Lakeland Parks & Recreation for its Annual Snowfest featuring the traditional Snow Mountain, arts and crafts vendors, a rock climbing wall, live entertainment and more.
 
Christmas Open House
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Florida Baptist Children’s Home (1015 Sikes Blvd., Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Join FBCH for a Christmas open house for holiday treats, cottage tours and fun-filled family entertainment.
 
Holiday Party
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Wilfred Smith Resource Center (135 Avenue Y N.E., Winter Haven)
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: This free Polk County Parks and Recreation holiday event is for the whole family and will feature sweet treats, arts and crafts, a coloring contest and a family movie, which will begin at 7 p.m.
 
Jingle Bell Rock Party
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Wabash Community Center (1230 Southern Ave., Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: This free Polk County Parks and Recreation holiday event is for the whole family and will feature sweet treats, arts & crafts, games, a coloring contest and a family movie. The movie will begin at 7 p.m.
 
Season’s Screenings- Home Alone
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Bring your chairs and blankets for Haines City’s Christmas-themed movie series in the park. Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase. The movie will be Home Alone.
 
Breakfast with Santa – Haines City
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Beef O Brady’s (902 Old Polk City Road, Haines City)
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Join Haines City Parks and Recreation where Santa and Mrs. Claus will great the children and pose for pictures. Admission is included with the purchase of a meal. Bring your cameras.
 
Breakfast with Santa at the Y
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: YMCA of West Central Florida (2125 Sleepy Hill Road, Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Join the YMCA in partnership with Discover Family Church for this annual free holiday featuring free breakfast, crafts, fun, games and Santa.
 
Christmas Notes
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Homeland Heritage Park (249 Church Avenue, Homeland)
Time: 5 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Join Polk County Parks and Recreation for live music, photos with Santa, refreshments, a holiday kid zone, outdoor movie, and more. Admission is free.
 
Holiday Craft Fair & Toy Drive
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Lakeland Knights of Columbus, 2014 Lakeland Hills Blvd.
Time: 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: This event will feature close to 50 crafters and vendors, a bounce house, raffles and food vendors. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to local autism and epilepsy charities. There will also be a box available for unwrapped toy donations.
 
Winterfest
Date: Saturday, December 12
Location: Wilson Park in Downtown Davenport
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Winterfest festivities will include a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, an electric night parade, cookie-decorating, vendors and snow. The parade will begin at 6 p.m. Other activities will begin at 7 p.m.
 
Holiday Tree Lighting Party
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Eloise Resource Center (710 Snively Avenue, Eloise)
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: This free Polk County Parks and Recreation family event will feature sweet treats, arts and crafts, a coloring contest, and a family movie.
 
Jolly Holidays
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Bartow Civic Center (2250 S. Florida Ave., Bartow)
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Bartow Parks & Recreation presents the 7th Annual Jolly Holidays with activities that will include one free picture with Santa and Mrs. Claus (additional pictures can be purchased for $5), decorating cookies and ornaments, coloring, music and activities, family gingerbread house making, and a chance to win a 6 foot stocking filled with toys (must be present to win)!
 
Mingle and Jingle
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Simple Vintage with Scout and Tag
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Come out for a night of door prizes, shopping, crafts, gifts, cookie decorating, music, drinks and more! Spend time at Simple Vintage & Scout and Tag’s Christmas “gift tag” making station. Kids can enjoy decorating free sugar cookies. The first 25 people will receive a free swan ornament. There will be more giveaways for purchase as well as acoustical music performed by Tanner Ledford and Diego Salinas.
 
Season’s Screenings-Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Bring your chairs and blankets for Haines City’s Christmas-themed movie series in the park, featuring Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase.
 
Snow Central
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Chain of Lakes Stadium, Winter Haven
Time: 5 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Bring the family to frolic in Winter Haven’s own winter wonderland featuring 70 tons of snow making up the snow slide and snow pile for children and adults to enjoy. There will also be games, food and appearances by Santa. The cost is $2 for adults and $1 for kids.
 
Santa’s Run for Our Kids
Date: Saturday, December 17
Location: Central Park, Winter Haven (near the Chamber)
Time: 7:30 a.m.
Details: Sponsored by the Winter Haven Optimist Club, this 5K run/walk, 10k run, 1/2 mi. kids’ run will begin at Central Park and progress around Lake Howard, Lake Cannon and Lake Mirror. The 10K will begin at 7:30 a.m. The 5K run/walk will begin at 8 a.m., and the kids’ run will begin at 9 a.m.
 
DCTE Merry Magical Holiday Ball 2016
Date: Sunday, December 18
Location: Lake Ariana Clubhouse, 321 Ramsgate Road, Auburndale
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Spend an enchanted night with all of your favorite characters making magical memories at the character meet and greet, royal portrait keepsakes, delicacies, interactive holiday story time, crafts, giveaways, carols, Santa, and singing and dancing. The cost is $25-$35.
 
Holly Jolly Jingle Bell Jog
Date: Saturday, December 19
Location: Cleveland Heights Golf Course
Time: 6:30 a.m.
Details: Get your holidays off to a running start with the City of Lakeland’s 5K and grand opening of Three Parks Trail. The entry is $30 for the chip-timed race and will include a t-shirt if registered by Dec. 1. Enjoy post-race refreshments and photo opportunities with Santa.
 
Christmas Around the World
Date: Tuesday, December 20
Location: WonderHere (111 South Florida Avenue,Lakeland)
Time: 5-8 p.m.
Details: Join WonderHere for this free holiday event. Drop in anytime between 5-8 p.m.
 
Season’s Screenings-The Polar Express
Date: Thursday, December 22
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Bring your chairs and blankets for Haines City’s Christmas-themed movie series in the park, featuring The Polar Express. Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase.
 

Theatre & Performing Arts Events

A Christmas Gala Concert of Holiday Favorites
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Polk State Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre
Time: 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Details: This Polk State College winter concert is features all of your holiday favorites. The cost is free for Polk State College students, Polk County high school students, Polk State faculty and staff.
 
Christmas at the Ramon
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Ramon Theater, Frostproof
Time: 2 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
Details: This celebration of the Christmas Season featuring choirs and individual performers, coming together for a family-friendly gathering, with songs and community caroling. Donations of non-perishable items will be collected to benefit the Frostproof Care Center.
 
The Ultimate Nightmare Before Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Polk Theatre(121 S Florida Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.
Details: A stark departure from traditional holiday dance performances, the Ultimate Dance Center presents this homage to Tim Burton’s stop-motion animation film through jazz, hip hop, ballet and contemporary dance.
 
The Glory of Christmas
Date: Monday, December 5
Location: First Presbyterian Church, Lakeland
Time: 6-7 p.m..
Details: The Sanctuary swells with the magnificent music of the Christmas season when the FPC choirs join together with guest artists to present the annual Glory of Christmas.
 
A Royal Christmas
Date: Thursday, December 8
Location: Polk State Lake Wales Arts Center
Time: 7-8:30 p.m.
Details: Polk State College presents Warner University’s “A Royal Christmas”. There is no cost of admission to this performance.
 
Elf Jr. The Musical
Date: Friday, December 9-Sunday, December 11
Location: Lakeland Community Theatre (121 S. Lake Ave., Lakeland)
Time: See times below.
Details: Based on the beloved holiday film, this hilarious fish-out-of-water comedy follows Buddy the Elf in his quest to find his true identity. Rated G. The cost is $15 for adults and $12 for children 12 and under.
Show times: Friday at 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.
 
A Gift for the Holidays: The Christmas Gala
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Florida Southern College’s Branscomb Auditorium
Time: 2:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Details: As the holidays approach, music faculty, staff, and students eagerly shift their attention to the preparation of FSC’s gift to the community, the Christmas Gala featuring beloved traditions as Adolphe Adam’s O Holy Night and the stirring audience-interactive Christmas Carol Sing-Along, this year’s production, A Gift for the Holidays, will reveal gifts of beautiful sacred and secular seasonal repertoire performed by a dazzling array of music ensembles, soloists, and surprise guests. The cost is $4-8.
 
Symphony Guild: ISO Christmas Concert
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Polk State Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre
Time: 3-4 p.m.
Details: The Symphony Guild of Winter Haven welcomes the Imperial Symphony Orchestra for a celebration of the season at Polk State College Fine Arts Theatre in Winter Haven. Tickets are available by calling (863) 294-7213 or (863) 206-7167.
 
The Crystal Nutcracker
Date: Sunday, December 11
Location: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: 3 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
Details: Clarice and her Nutcracker Prince embark upon an exciting and courageous adventure as they battle the mouse queen, travel through the snow forest, on their way to the Crystal Palace. Performed in Ballet, Tap, Modern, Swing, Jazz, African, and, Hip Hop by Crystal’s World of Dance, this dance spectacular is not the typical holiday nutcracker. The cost is $20 for adults and $15 for seniors and kids 12 and under.
 
Over 55 Show Band Concert: “’Tis the Season”
Date: Sunday, December 11
Location: Polk State Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre
Time: 2 p.m.-4 p.m.
Details: The Over 55 Show Band will perform at the Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre. The cost for the concert is $10.
 
Masterworks #2: A Victorian Holiday
Date: Tuesday, December 13
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 7:30-9 p.m.
Details: A perennial favorite, this season the ISO presents the sounds of the season including the classic Victorian-era tale “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” with vocalists from Harrison School for the Arts. Tickets range from $15-$35.
 
The Magic of Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 17
Location: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Details: Justino and Daniela Zoppe bring a little magic in their all new stage show for all ages featuring Cirque Acrobatics, comedy, dangerous stunts, mind-blowing illusions that’ll leave you with an inspiring lesson about family, love and the magic of Christmas. The cost is $18 for adults, and $12 for children 12 and under.
 
Florida Dance Theatre Presents: TCHAIKOVSKY’S The Nutcracker
Date: Saturday, December 17; Sunday, December 18
Location: Florida Southern College’s Branscomb Auditorium
Time: 7:30-9 p.m.(Saturday); 2:30-4 p.m. (Sunday)
Details: Lakeland’s own professional dance company, the Florida Dance Theatre, brings its celebrated annual production of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker to the stage of Branscomb Auditorium. Performed with charm and perfection by the dynamic dancers of FSC’s company-in-residence, this breathtaking production features colorful scenery, dazzling costumes, and entrancing choreography. As a special treat, community children join the professional dancers, creating a family-friendly, feel-good performance event. The cost ranges from $9-$18.
 
Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker
Date: Tuesday, December 27
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 7 p.m.
Details: The ultimate holiday tradition for the youngest to the seniors in every family, seeing Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker creates holiday memories that last a lifetime. The renowned, award-winning principal dancers and corps de ballet thrill audiences with their expertise, dramatic expression and stunning leaps, drops and turns. The cost is $28 and up.
 
New Year’s Eve at the Ramon
Date: Saturday, December 31
Location: Ramon Theater, Frostproof
Time: 6-10 p.m.
Details: Celebrate New Year’s Eve at the Ramon Theater to enjoy intrigue, deception and delicious food. Prepare your sleuthing skills for the clues given by the Ramon Players.
 

Attraction Events

Kenny G: The Miracles and Holiday Hits Tour 2016
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 8 p.m.
Details: Join The Lakeland Center for an evening of holiday hits from Grammy® Award-winning saxophonist Kenny G. The cost is $29.50-$69.50.
 
Santa’s Workshop with Family Fundamentals
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Family Fundamentals, Lakeland (1021 Lakeland Hills Blvd.)
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: Enjoy a traditional Christmas experience with Santa and Mrs. Claus. The event will include photos with Santa and hands-on holiday activities for ages 2-6. Santa himself will be handing out children’s books to all of the boys and girls.
 
Sunset & Symphony Holiday Concert
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: Enjoy the sounds of the season with the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra and the Singing Tower carillon as they perform together during one of Central Florida’s favorite outdoor concerts. Families and friends are encouraged to prepare themed picnics and experience a magical evening as the sun sets atop Iron Mountain. $20 adults / $8 children (5-12) / $18 members in advance. Event day costs: $25 adults, $10 children, $25 members.
 
Christmas with the Nelsons: A Tribute to Ricky Nelson
Date: Sunday, December 4
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: CHRISTMAS WITH THE NELSONS tells the story of three family Christmases in the lives of America’s Favorite Family, The Nelsons. This heartwarming multimedia, live concert experience stars the third generation of #1 Nelson Family hit-makers and features a genuine blend of Everly Brothers-style harmonies and Smothers Brothers-style comedy. Center Stage Buffet is available for this performance. The cost is $30-$45.
 
Fingerprint Snowman Plate
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: PicassoZ Art Café (4632 Cleveland Heights Blvd., Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: You can walk in anytime with your family or just to work on this by yourself, and Melanie can complete the artwork if you prefer. This is more of a casual workshop, not a class. She has 6 spots available, prepay & reserve today. $25 for dinner plate, upgrade to a platter optional. If you choose to upgrade, the $25 registration will apply toward the platter.
 
Bartow Ford Winter Wonderland
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Bartow Ford
Time: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Bartow Ford and 97 Country have teamed together to create a free Winter Wonderland event featuring 64 tons of real snow, snow slides, characters, two Polar Express trains, face painting, photo opportunities and more.
 
Holiday Home Workshop
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m. or 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Details: Spend the morning or afternoon with Project Blooming founder, Linda Worle creating a beautiful succulent wreath. It’s easy to mix succulents in an array of types and colors that will last year-round. Workshop includes instruction, basic framework materials, and plants. $70, all materials included.
 
Christmas Coloring
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Art Centric Studio (1035 South Florida Avenue, Suite #180, Lakeland)
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: This free event for all ages is a great way to relax! Vintage Christmas cards, Christmas trees, and ugly Christmas sweaters are just a few of the coloring sheets that will be provided. You are welcome and encouraged to bring your own coloring books and colored pencils, but if you lack the supplies, they’ve got you covered.
 
Holiday Pop-Up Shop
Date: Friday, December 17
Location: Concord Coffee & A Kind Place (1035 South Florida Ave., Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: Concord Coffee and A Kind Place present the Holiday Pop-up Shop. Come out to the Dixieland Mall for photos with Santa, kid’s activities, a gift wrapping station, hot chocolate, music, and more.
 
Carillon & Chorale Concert plus Holiday Home Tour Open Late
Date: Sunday, December 18
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Details: Enjoy an hour-long carillon concert with a live choir under the evening stars. Before or after the concert, visit Pinewood Estate for a special nighttime tour complete with hot chocolate and cookies. It’s a unique opportunity to visit the Gardens after normal operating hours. Enjoy a light dinner at the Blue Palmetto Café before the concert for an additional fee. Last entry to Pinewood Estate is at 9:30 p.m. Concert Only: $10 adult, $5 for child (5-12), free for members. Concert & Home Tour: $18 adult, $11 for child (5-12), $7 for members.
 
Publix Aprons Holiday Cookies
Date: Wednesday, December 21
Location: Publix Aprons Cooking School, (4730 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: ‘Tis the season for baking holiday cookies. Join Publix Aprons as they teach you how to make new recipes that you and your family will fall in love with. Menu: Chai Tea Eggnog Cookies; Maple Walnut Spiced Cookies; Peppermint Pin Wheel Cookies, Chocolate Chip Blondies; Coconut Cranberry Chews. The cost is $40. To reserve a seat for this class, call the Lakeland Cooking School at (863) 647-4127.

 
Kids’ New Year’s Eve
Date: Saturday, December 31
Location: LEGOLAND Florida, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Celebrate New Year’s Eve at LEGOLAND Florida where the giant LEGO brick drops at a very kid-friendly midnight KST (Kid Standard Time) – otherwise known as 7 p.m. EST. Other event elements include fireworks and a dance party DJ.
 

Misc. Events

Lights of Love
Date: Tuesday, December 6
Location: Lakeland Hospice House (3450 Lakeland Hills Boulevard, Lakeland)
Time: 6-7 p.m.
Details: Lights of Love is a commemorative tree-lighting ceremony that benefits Good Shepherd Hospice. This annual gathering is an opportunity for Good Shepherd Hospice families and community members to gather to celebrate and remember their loved ones in a special, unique way. Candles are lit by all attendees, musical entertainment is provided by community members, holiday songs are shared and words of comfort are delivered by Good Shepherd Hospice staff and area spiritual leaders.
 
Emerge Elves & Santas For Seniors
Date: Wednesday, December 7
Location: VISTE (1232 E Magnolia St)
Time: 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Details: EMERGE Lakeland is partnering with Volunteers in Service to the Elderly (VISTE) to provide Holiday Care Packages to 50 limited income, homebound seniors in the community. Join other “EMERGE elves” for a 20-minute facility tour and packaging of 50 personal cares boxes. Approximately 20 – 25 volunteers are needed.
 
Rudolph Round-Up Holiday Toy Drive
Date: December
Location: Heartland for Children, Lakeland
Time: N/A
Details: Heartland for Children’s 12th Annual Rudolph Round-Up Holiday Toy Drive helps to make incredible holiday memories for 1,400 local children who have experienced abuse and/or neglect. Become a Rudolph champion by sponsoring a child, sponsoring a toy drive, making a monetary contribution, donating a toy and/or spreading the word.
 
 
Related Posts:
2015 Holiday Events
 
 

2016 Fall Festivals & Halloween Events in Polk County

Look no further for fall fun! Search our list of Polk County’s 2016 Halloween happenings and autumn festivities taking place now through early November.
fall pumpkins pixabay LRCPixabay.com

Recurring & Multi-Date Events:

If you’re looking for 2017 events, please click here.

Through Sunday, October 9

The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940
Where: Florida Southern College, Loca Lee Buckner Theatre
Time: Sept. 29- Oct. 2 & Oct. 6-9, 7:30 p.m. (Sundays at 2:30 p.m.)
Details: Written by John Bishop and directed by Mary T. Albright, this raucous comedy is drawn from prominent murder mystery films of the 1940s. The plot centers on the creative team responsible for a recent Broadway flop in which three chorus girls were murdered by the mysterious “Stage Door Slasher.” Called to assemble at the estate of a potential wealthy backer for their new show, they encounter a mansion replete with sliding panels, secret passageways, and a mysterious maid, all of which figure prominently in the ensuing mayhem when the infamous “slasher” reappears and strikes again.
 

Thursday, October 6-Saturday, October 8

Cracker Storytelling Festival
Where: Homeland Heritage Park, 249 Church Avenue, Bartow
Time: 9:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Details: This annual literacy and multicultural event will feature thrilling stories from ten talented storytellers from around the state of Florida.
 

Friday, October 14-Sunday, October 16

Lake Mirror Classic Auto Festival
Where: Lake Mirror Promenade, Lakeland
Time: See details below
Details: The annual event in Downtown Lakeland attracts over 40,000 spectators and draws top car collectors from across the southeast featuring a display of more than 650 show vehicles. Friday 6 p.m.- Hot Rod Rendezvous and outdoor concert; Saturday, 10 a.m.- Car show & free community events; Sunday, 8 a.m.- Road Tour (pre-registration required).
 

Saturday, October 15-Sunday, October 16

Rootstock Plant & Garden Festival
Where: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Details: Bok Tower Gardens’ signature fall plant sale debuts ROOTSTOCK featuring dozens of plant vendors, local musical artists, healthy cuisine and a spectacular display of seasonal foliage. This festival marks the start of Florida’s gardening season, and admission is free both days.
 

Saturday, October 22-Sunday, October 23

Florida Dance Theatre Presents Dracula
Where: Branscomb Auditorium, Florida Southern College
Time: 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, 2:30 p.m. on Sunday
Details: Join Florida Dance Theatre as they unearth a deadly foe at their first full-length ballet of the season, “Dracula”. This sensational selection has just the right amount of spooky, scary, and fun to make it entertaining for all. The ​cost is: $35 for premiere seats, $20 for general adult and $15 for child admission.
 

Friday, October 28-Saturday, October 29

Polk County Sheriff’s Haunted Jail Tour
Where: PCSO jail, 455 N. Broadway Avenue, Bartow
Time: 6-11 p.m.
Details: The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is hosting their annual Haunted Jail Tour to benefit the United Way of Central Florida. PCSO volunteers will present the Zombie Apocalypse. Saturday will be family night, with treats and games for kids. The tour will be $5, with proceeds going to United Way. Visitors will be taken through areas that include the morgue, infirmary, incinerator and jail.
 
Rocky Horror Picture Show
Where: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: Part begins at 9pm; Movie at midnight
Details: Let’s do the TIME WARP again…The Polk Theatre continues its tradition of showing the ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW and will feature the Original Lipstick Players as the Shadow Cast under the direction of Ferdinand DeJesus. Tickets are on sale online and in the office (9-5). $15 Prop bags will be available at the Door $5.
 

Saturday, October 29-Sunday, October 30

Pioneer Days Festival
Where: Lake Wailes, Lake Wales
Time: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday; 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Sunday
Details: There will be live entertainment on stage both days. Living history re-enactments, artisan and tradesmen demonstrations, pony rides, children’s activities, a Historic Architecture Carriage Tour, and an Antique Car Parade will showcase the weekend’s festivities.
 

Through Saturday, October 29

Zombie Farm Paintball Hayride
Where: Smith Family Ranch, 13444 Moore Road, Lakeland
Time: Begings Sept. 30, 7-10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays
Details: Zombie Farm Paintball is a 20 minute hayride, in the dark, that takes you through Zombie Farm’s infectious zones. There have been reports of the living dead lurking in the night, especially around swampy areas. The ranch will supply you with a paintball gun for your protection against these creatures. Admission includes live zombies to shoot at, use of a paintball gun, 200 rounds of ammo and a narrated hayride. The cost is $30 per person.
 

Through Sunday, October 30

CornFusion Crop Maze & Fall Festival
Where: Smith Family Ranch, 13444 Moore Road, Lakeland
Time: Begins Oct. 1, 3-6 p.m. Fridays, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays, 12-6 p.m. Sundays
Details: Join the Smith Family Ranch for a fun-filled day at CornFusion Crop Maze & Fall Festival. where you will find about 20 acres of fun for all ages including a pumpkin patch, 8-acre Egyptian Wheat maze, corn box, corn cannon, country store, cow train, miniature mazes, pony rides, and farm animals.
 
Mel Brook’s Young Frankenstein
Where: Lakeland Community Theatre, 121 S Lake Ave, Lakeland
Time: Begins Oct. 14, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays; 7:30-10 p.m. Fridays & Saturdays; 2-4:30 p.m. Sundays
Details: The electrifying adaptation of the monstrously funny film will leave you in stitches. From the creators of the record-breaking Broadway sensation The Producers comes this monster new musical comedy. The cost is $22 for adults, $20 for seniors (55 & up) and $15 for children (17 & under).
 
Pumpkin Safari
Where: Safari Wilderness Ranch, 10850 Moore Road, Lakeland
Time: Begins Oct. 8, 1-6 p.m. Saturdays & Sundays
Details: These special fall safaris include 45-minute customized vehicle tours, led by an experienced tour guides; guided walking tours of the small mammal house; visits to a free-flight aviary and petting zoo barn; one pumpkin for each visitor, which can be carved at the ranch and given to the animals for enrichment or taken home to decorate; and stops at craft and enrichment stations.The cost is $75 or see Groupon for up to 52 percent off.
 

Through Monday, October 31

Brick-or-Treat
Where: LEGOLAND Florida, Winter Haven
Time: Begins Oct. 1, 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Saturdays & Sundays & Halloween Monday
Details: Presented by Shutterfly, this event returns with more spooky, kooky Halloween fun for kids. Expanded in 2016, the friendly-not-frightening event features trick-or-treating along the Brick or Treat Trail, larger-than-life LEGO® models, LEGO build activities, the world’s largest LEGO jack-o-lantern, a scavenger hunt with prizes, and an exclusive, Halloween-themed fireworks show in Pirates’ Cove. Brick-or-Treat takes place on weekends in October.
 

Friday, November 4-Sunday, November 6

St. Joseph’s Annual Fall Carnival
Where: St. Joseph, 210 West Lemon Street, Lakeland
Time: Friday, 5-11 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Details: Check out St. Joseph’s annual fall carnival for fun! The cost of a day pass is $15 pre-sale or $20 at the gate. The weekend pass is $30 pre-sale or $40 after Nov. 1.
 

Through Saturday, November 5

The Shallow Grave
Where: 701 42nd St NW, Winter Haven
Time: Begins Sept. 30, 7:30 p.m.-11:30 p.m., Fridays & Saturdays
Details: The Shallow Grave is a highly detailed spine tingling scare-fest that brings the Central Florida area something they have been missing. An intimate in your face, fear filled environment with custom themes and movie quality sets to put you in the midst of terror unlike anything you have experienced before. The cost is $27-$43.
 

Through Sunday, November 13

Harvest Holler Corn Maze
Where: 950 Tavares Road, Polk City 33868
Time: Begins Sept. 23, 4-8 p.m. Fridays; 12-8 p.m. Saturdays; 12-5 p.m. Sundays
Details: Admission includes an interactive corn maze, hayride, hay fort, corn cribs, tire swings, cow train, corn hole and pumpkin patch. The cost is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and $8 youth (4-12 years). Kids 3 and under are free.
 
fall pumpkins Pixabay LRC Pixabay.com
 

Single Date-Events:

Thursday, October 6

Pep Homecoming Parade & Festival
Where: MILK Park on Lake Silver, Winter Haven
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Join the Public Education Partnership of Winter Haven, area schools and local organizations at the PEP Homecoming Parade & Festival. In addition to the parade and festival, there will be a performance by the Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team and a firework display.
Rescheduled to Monday, October 10 due to Hurricane Matthew.
 

Friday, October 7

Downtown Lakeland’s First Friday
Where: Munn Park in Downtown Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: This monthly event offers guests an evening of free family-friendly entertainment, activities, live music, art receptions, a car show, and the opportunity to visit a great, locally-owned restaurant or retail establishment. Each month, First Friday has a different theme, and special activities are provided to complement the theme. October’s theme will be “Friday Night Live, a celebration of the arts”.
 
Dinner & A Movie: Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho
Where: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Details: Join the Polk Theatre for a special Halloween installment of the Dinner & A Movie series as they present the Hitchcock classic Psycho accompanied with devilishly fine food. Dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m. with the movie starting at 7.30 p.m. Guests are able to attend just the movie for $5.
 
Halloween Boo-gie Night Party
Where: Medulla Resource Center, 1049 Parker Road, Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Dance the night away at Polk County Parks & Recreation’s Halloween dance party. This free family event will feature a DJ, face-painting, a trick or treat village, coloring contests and a costume contest.
 

Saturday, October 8

Polk County Master Gardeners Fall Plant Sale
Where: Lakeland Nursery, 4620 US Hwy 98 S, Lakeland
Time: 9 a.m.- 1p.m.
Details: Florida-friendly plants will be available for purchase including butterfly and hummingbird plants, Florida natives, ornamentals for sun and shade, Florida Sun Peach Trees, blueberry bushes and bromeliads. Master gardeners will be on hand to answer questions.
 

Friday, October 14

Halloween Trick-or-Treat Party
Where: Wilfred Smith Resource Center, Winter Haven
Time: 5-7 p.m.
Details: Polk County Parks and Recreation presents this free Halloween party featuring music, light refreshments, arts & crafts, coloring contests and costume contests.
 
Kids Pumpkinfest
Where: Winter Haven Public Library,
Time: 5:30-9 p.m.
Details: Drop off your children while you attend Oktoberfest! Kids will enjoy games, decorating pumpkins, and pizza. $10 per child, kindergarten – 5th grade
 
Main Street Winter Haven Oktoberfest
Where: Central Park, Winter Haven
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Join Main Street Winter Haven for the 10th Annual Oktoberfest featuring beer, brats and live music. A Tasting Ticket includes: bratwurst or BBQ dinner and tasting of over 20 beers for $25.
 

Saturday, October 15

FallFest 2016
Where: Polk State College, 999 Avenue H NE, Winter Haven
Time: 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: Thousands trek to the campus each third Saturday in October to enjoy the event that features a craft show, the Kids Zone, music, police and EMS demonstrations, the Pumpkin Patch, food, the Haunted House and…more.
 
Lakeland Zombiefest
Where: Sun ‘n Fun Fly In Inc., 4175 Medulla Rd, Lakeland
Time: 2 p.m.-12 a.m.
Details: Terminal V will include local bands and entertainers along with how-to and discussion panels. There will be scheduled costume contests and cosplayers. Zombiefest always has an eclectic variety of vendors serving food and sharing their merchandise. The cost is $5. Kids 10 & under are free. The cost of parking is $5.
 

Friday, October 21

Dracula’s Masquerade Ball
Where: Lake Mirror Promenade, 111 Massachusetts Avenue, Lakeland
Time: 7:30-11:30 p.m.
Details: Join Florida Dance Theatre for Dracula’s Masquerade Ball on Friday, October 21, 2016. This is one event you sure don’t want to miss. Come enjoy an evening of fine food, music and dancing and revel in the ambiance of the Loggia as it is transformed into Dracula’s Masquerade Ball.
 

Saturday, October 22

32nd Annual “Munn Park Extravaganza
Where: Munn Park, Lakeland
Time: 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: The 32nd Annual “Munn Park Extravaganza”, presented by the Garden Club of Lakeland Inc. will offer over 40 vendors featuring a variety of plants, flowers, trees, and garden-related art for sale. A new plant introduction will be presented by Bill Koen from the City of Lakeland Parks and Recreation.
 
Haunted Halloween Hayride & Happenings
Where: Loyce E. Harpe Park, 500 W. Carter Road, Mulberry
Time: 5 – 10 p.m.
Details: Polk County Parks & Recreation’s 20th Annual Haunted Halloween Hayride & Happenings event offers a fun and safe alternative to traditional “trick or treating” while offering attractions such as a hayride to a haunted walking trail, carnival games, live entertainment, a trick or treat village, costume contest and pie -eating contest.
 
Kids’ Night Out
Where: WonderHere, 111 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Let your children (ages 4-12) enjoy some fun while YOU enjoy a much deserved night out…or in! $20 per child, dinner included.
 

Sunday, October 23

Hocus Pocus
Where: Polk Theatre, 121 Florida Avenue S, Lakeland
Time: 2-3:45 p.m.
Details: Join the Polk Theatre for a showing of the 1993 Halloween film, Hocus Pocus. Rated PG. The cost is $5.
 
A Nightmare on Elm Street
Where: Polk Theatre, 121 Florida Avenue S, Lakeland
Time: 5-6:45 p.m.
Details: Join the Polk Theatre for a showing of Wes Craven’s A Nightmare on Elm Street. This 1984 film is rated R. The cost is $5.
 

Tuesday, October 25

Halloween Harvest – “Ghost Busters”
Where: Auburndale Downtown City Park
Time: 5:30-8:30 p.m.
Details: The Auburndale Chamber of Commerce presents this annual event featuring Trick-or-Treating, a costume contest, entertainment, flash mob dancing, food vendors, crafts and more. There will also be a Spook-tacular Haunted House with the Auburndale Fire Department (assisted by The Shallow Grave).
 

Thursday, October 27

74th Annual Crickette Club Parade & Carnival
Where: Downtown Bartow & Mosaic Park, Bartow
Time: 4-8 p.m.
Details: Bartow’s favorite family tradition is better than ever featuring rides for tots and teens, expanded food selections including food trucks, new games, costume contest for store-bought and homemade, Crickette Club’s famous cake walk, drawing for $500, $300, and $100 Visa cards, Bingo and more. All proceeds benefit the Bartow area Girl Scouts and the Bartow Community. Parade is free with the Carnival to follow at Mosaic Park.
 
Safe Haven Halloween
Where: Freedom Park, Polk City
Time: 5:30-8 p.m.
Details: Join in the annual spooky fun for the entire family featuring free popcorn and candy, delicious food, a cupcake walk for tiny tots, carnival games and prizes, tug-o-war, three legged races, potato-sack races, and costume contests.
 

Friday, October 28

Boo! Bash
Where: Explorations V, Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: Celebrate safely during a fun-filled morning of Halloween games, food and activities for the youngest crowd. Join in by wearing kid-friendly costumes. Included with admission/membership.
 
Halloween Spooktacular
Where: Wabash Community Center, 1230 Southern Ave., Lakeland
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: This Polk County Parks & Rec event is free and will feature costume and coloring contests, trick or treating, and more.
 
Spooktoberfest
Where: Eloise Resource Center, 710 Snively Ave., Eloise
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: This Polk County Parks & Rec event is free and will feature costume and coloring contests, trick or treating, and more.
 

Saturday, October 29

Annual Dundee Fall Fest
Where: Dundee Community Center, 603 Lake Marie Blvd, Dundee
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: Bring the family out for games, hayrides, food and candy.
 
Ghouls’ Night Out
Where: Downtown Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.- 2p.m.
Details: The City of Winter Haven will be hosting Ghouls’ Night out which includes candy from area businesses, a hayride, food vendors, a DJ, and lots of fun activities for people of all ages.
 
Halloween Water Ski Show
Where: Lake Silver, Winter Haven
Time: 8 p.m.
Details: Enjoy this special ‘Spooktacular’ Ski Show on Lake Silver by the Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team. There will be a costume contest before the show at 7 p.m. for ages 0-16. Free.
 
Lakeland Library’s Annual Food Drive
Where: Lakeland Public Library front lawn, 100 Lake Morton Drive, Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Bring in your non-perishable items and the participate in fall festivities that include games, face-painting and snacks at this family-friendly event. The event is free and open to the public, but please remember your food donation.
 
The Mulberry Library’s 2nd Annual Harvest Festival
Where: Spence Field, 1100 NE 1st Street, Mulberry
Time: 5 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Enjoy a night of fun featuring vendors, pony rides, hay rides, candy, trunk-or-treat, games, a hay bale maze and a live Bluegrass band!
 

Sunday, October 30

Fall Festival
Where: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 1 p.m.- 4 p.m.
Details: NorthRidge Church present this annual fall festival featuring your same favorite free elements and a few extras such as inflatables, food, games, train rides, Ident-A-Kid, Fire Department exhibits, by the Polk County Sherriff’s Office SWAT and Rescue teams, and candy.
 
Halloween Movie
Where: Polk Theatre, 121 Florida Avenue S, Lakeland
Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
Details: Join the Polk Theatre for a showing of the 1978 Halloween movie classic, Halloween featuring Jamie Lee Curtis. Rated R. The cost is $5.
 
The Exorcist Movie
Where: Polk Theatre, 121 Florida Avenue S, Lakeland
Time: 8-10:15 p.m.
Details: Join the Polk Theatre for a showing of the 1973 Halloween movie film, The Exorcist. Rated R. The cost is $5.
 

Monday, October 31

Safe Place to Trick or Treat
Where: Lewis Matthews Complex/Gene Carroll Field, Davenport
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Enjoy free hot dogs and drinks, cotton candy, popcorn, a haunted house, maze, costume contest and activities.
 
Just Cares, Inc. 5th Annual Fall Festival
Where: 124 S Kentucky Ave, Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Join this safe environment for families that is an alternative to Halloween featuring a petting zoo, games & activities, bounce house, performances, music, candy and more.
 

Saturday, November 5

Auburndale’s Autumn Arts & Crafts Bazaar
Where: Auburndale Downtown City Park
Time: 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Details: The City of Auburndale presents their annual arts and crafts show. Stop by to find arts and craft vendors with items in painting, needlepoint, ceramics, photography, stained glass, wearable art, jewelry, wood-crafting and more.
 
Belk Charity Day Sale
Where: Belk at Lakeside Village
Time: 6-10 a.m.
Details: Purchase your $5 Charity Sale ticket to support the Learning Resource Center or other local organizations and schools. Get $5 off your first purchase with our thanks for supporting our southern communities. Save on rarely discounted brands! Free gift card to the first 100 customers. The pre-sale dates are Oct. 25 – Nov. 4.
 
Gobble, Gobble, Death & Trouble
Where: Ramon Theater, 15 E Wall St, Frostproof
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: Enjoy a dinner at the theater while trying to solve this fall-themed murder mystery. Tickets cost $40.
 
Kathleen Area Historical Society’s Fall Festival
Where: Heritage Park, Kathleen, 8950 N Campbell Rd. Lakeland
Time: 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Enjoy this Kathleen tradition where you’ll find cane grinding/syrup making, a pioneer life exhibit, rummage sale, children’s activities, live music, food and more. Vendors and other nonprofit organizations will be in attendance. Admission is free.
 
 
Related Posts:
2015 Fall Festival & Events

 
 

LRC’s Fall is Shaping Up to Be a Productive Semester

“School bells are ringing, loud and clear; vacation’s over, school is here…”


This fall is shaping up to be another busy semester for the Learning Resource Center and LRC students. In addition to programs such as ACT Prep and SAT Prep, Study Habits of Successful Students for grades 6-8, Get the Competitive Edge…College Success Planning for grades 9-12 and year-round One-to-One Tutoring, LRC is working with the community in the following programs that have just begun or will soon begin.
 
LRC Programs Fall 2016

Taking place now:

  • 21st Century After-School Programs at Polk City Elementary, Loughman Oaks Elementary, Garner Elementary and Lewis-Anna Woodbury Elementary Schools
  • Exceptional Student Education for Public and Private Schools
  • All Saints Academy Supplemental Services
  • PEP After-School Programs at PEP Education Center and Inwood Elementary

 

Soon to begin:

  • Title I Florida Baptist Children’s Home Tutoring Program
  • Title I Migrant Program
  • Title I Hearth Programs (Homeless Children)
  • CROP
  • Sheriff’s Girls Villa
  • GRE at Florida Southern College

 

“But we are glad school has begun. For work is always mixed with fun. When autumn comes and the weather is cool, nothing can take the place of school.” – Winifred C. Mitchell


 
 

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