Knox County to Host 25th Annual Holiday Festival of Lights at the Cove

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.—Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs will flip the switch to open the 25th annual Holiday Festival of Lights at The Cove at Concord Park starting 6 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 1. (The Cove is located at 11808 S. Northshore Drive.)

Mayor Jacobs will also greet guests and hand out candy “Kanes.”

The family-friendly Festival will run from 6 to 9 p.m. through Saturday, Dec. 31, excluding Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It is free and open to the public though visitors are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to donate to The Love Kitchen, which provides meals, clothing, and emergency food packages for the homebound, homeless, and unemployed.

Visitors also can make monetary donations via a QR code that will be available inside the River Sports Outfitter facility. Those donations will benefit the county’s annual School Mania event that helps supply local students with free school supplies.

“This will be the 25th anniversary and traditions like this are what makes this time of year special,” Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs said. “Folks have the chance to drop by, enjoy the festive atmosphere, and even help give back to the community or just spend time taking in the lights and activities.”

During the Festival, The Cove’s three-quarter-mile greenway trail is illuminated by a sparkling light display coordinated to music. Check out a preview here. The Cove has several fire pits available for guests to warm up or roast s’mores. Pets on leashes are welcome.

Opening night will feature Storytime, and letters to Santa where patrons can gather under the pavilion and hear tales from traditional Christmas characters as they write their letters. The event also will feature an activity zone where children can make sugar cookies and ornaments. The department will even provide the crafts!

A concession stand will offer hot chocolate, pizza, hot dogs, nachos, and popcorn during the month. The 2023 Holiday Festival of Lights is sponsored by B97.5, which also will be onsite Dec. 1 with the Knox County Mayor’s Office and the Knox County Parks and Recreation department.