Make sure to attend one of the many Naples Events
If you are looking for something to do, then look no further. There are always Naples events that make for a fun filled day. Throughout the year and just about every weekend during the season, there is something going on. Whether it is a parade on Fifth, fireworks at the Pier, an art or car show in Olde Naples, there is always something to do.
The Naples Ferrari Club of America is the proud sponsor of Cars on Fifth held each February on Fifth Avenue in Olde Naples. Each year over 500 hundred avid collector of exotic, classic and muscle cars get to together to show off their pride and joys. With over 50,000 Naples residents and visitors attending, there is something for everybody. From current and classic Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Maseratis, Jaguars, Lotuses, Alfa Romeos, Triumphs, Porsches, Corvettes, American muscle cars, and rare race cars the Cars on Fifth show has it all. You will want to take time to donate as this is just one of the many fund raising events that help local charities.
Held this year in January, the Naples Chalk Art Festival makes for a fun afternoon. Student and professional artists transform Fifth avenue into a half mile long canvas of color. Painted on 6, 9 and 12 foot squares, some are so impressive they make you want to cut them out with a Skill Saw and take them home. Spend the afternoon, help judge the paintings and enjoy the fun, food and music. All proceeds go charity.
Festival of Lights on Third
You will not want to miss the snow! That´s right, it really does snow in Naples. Each Thanksgiving, the Third Street South area celebrates the coming holiday with a festive street lighting, artificial snow and holiday decorations. Attracting 25,000, the festivities begin with a parade featuring church choirs, local school bands, elves and of course Santa. The highlight of the evening is always the lighting of the tree. This is truly one of Naples events for the whole family.
Fourth of July Fire Works, a tradition as American as Apple Pie! If you are in Naples over the Fourth you will not want to miss our annual fireworks display set off from a barge just off of Naples Pier in Olde Naples. The fireworks generally start at 9:00 PM and feature spectacular displays set to a selection of patriotic music. So come early to get a good parking place, bring chairs and blankets, pick a spot and be ready to ooh and ah. The best viewing is on the beach from Doctors Pass on the north to south of the Pier. If you are not near the Pier to hear the music live, make sure to bring your radio and tune in to into WAVV 101.1 FM for the simulcast broadcast!
If you love a parade, what better way to start your Fourth of July holiday! The annual Naples Fourth of July parade travels along Broad Avenue South to Third Street South, turns east on 5th Avenue South and then south on 8th Street South past City Hall before ending on 8th Avenue South. Thousands of spectators decked out in red, white and blue line the route to watch the floats, Shriners in their funny little cars, clowns giving out candy, local dignitaries and first and foremost our Nations Veterans and Military. So come early to get a good spot and don’t forget to bring an umbrella to ward off the sun.
After initially deciding 2016 would be its last year, the Great Dock Canoe Race is back! The Naples Junior Chamber has taken over the event in order to continue the tradition that began in 1977 by the owner of the Dock Restaurant for residents to celebrate the end of the season.
There is no question that this is one of the most popular Naples events. Thousands of people gather to watch the race from the shore, docks or boats in Naples Bay. The theme changes each year, and the costumes and headgear of the participants and spectators are as much a part as the paddling and huffing and puffing. Even the canoes get into the act with a parade and prizes awarded for “The Best Dressed Canoe” Contestants paddle a course starting at Crayton Cove, circling the City Dock, and then heading north to Tin City before retracing their route back. Some of them are just out for the fun of it and an overturned canoe or two only adds to the merriment. This year paddleboard was added to include this ever increasing pastime. The Annual Great Dock Canoe Race is a community event with all proceeds going to local organizations working for the town’s benefit. It’s a great time that you will not want to miss.
Naples is a great place to start the New Year! Head to the beach for an afternoon of fun and sun and make sure to bring snacks and refreshments and sun block as you will definitely want to stay for the Spectacular Fireworks Display. Lasting a good half an hour, they are set off at the Naples Pier and can be seen up and down the beach. If you are just going to see the fireworks make sure to come early for a parking place as thousands flock to the beach to see the display. Many bring a candle lit dinner and make a celebration of it.
Fifth Avenue is a great place to be even if you are not Irish! Old Naples is home to the largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the Southeast with thousands lining the streets. The parade kicks off at 9.00 am with a flag raising ceremony at the Dock at Crayton Cove followed by the parade at 11:00 am. Bands playing Irish music, college floats, Irish step dancers in elaborate dresses and antique and classic cards make it something for everyone. As always, there is even candy for the kids. Any place on Fifth or Third is a great place for a curb side seat. Make sure to come early and wear your green. Remember that On St Patrick’s day, being Irish is a state of mind.
You will not want to miss the “World Famous Swamp Buggy Races” held at Florida Sports Park in Naples every January, March and October, truly one of the original Naples events. Here you will find 70 fearless swamp buggy racers driving snorkeled jeeps and loud, oversized, high powered custom swamp buggies around a mile long track covered in three feet of water with two 8 foot deep “Sippy Holes.” Giant rooster tails of mud and water, screaming fans and the dunking of the Swamp Buggy Queen always make it a day to remember. You will want to bring the family for a weekend of races, refreshments, mud and fun.
If you play Pickleball, want to learn about the game from the best, or want to test your skills, then you will not want to miss the US Open Pickleball Championships. This world class international completion returns to East Naples Community Park for the second year this April. The tournament includes singles, doubles and mixed doubles who play in a variety of skill and age groups ranging from 12 to 90 with a field of 1,300 athletes from all over the world. Pickleball combines parts of badminton, tennis, and ping pong, and is played with two, three, or four players who use solid paddles to hit a Wiffle type ball over a net on a badminton sized court with rules similar to tennis. You will not want to miss your chance to see why Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America.
There are many more great Naples Events. Make sure to watch this page as I am updating it on a regular basis!