Light Up UCF Returns For 2016 Holiday Season Nov 18 – Jan 7

Light Up UCF, one of Orlando’s best annual holiday traditions, takes place at the CFE Arena at UCF

Light Up UCF, one of Orlando’s best annual holiday traditions, starts up this Friday, November 18, 2016, and runs through January 7, 2017.

During the event, the area in and around the CFE Arena at the University of Central Florida is transformed into a winter wonderland with lights, holiday music and rides.


Highlights include the Ice Rink Pavilion presented by Central Florida Expressway Authority, the Arctic Glide Ice Slide and Light Up Lane presented by Coca-Cola, an upgraded Ferris Wheel, carriage rides, and there will be an all new ride called The Winter Whirl.

There are several free opportunities for all to enjoy, including the Holiday Light Show presented by Orlando Sanford International Airport with thousands of lights choreographed to seasonal musical selections and snow, spun by a live DJ.

On select nights throughout the event, the Holiday Film Festival will be showing free movies outdoors on a two-story screen. Films usually show twice nightly at 7pm and 9:30pm. A listing of all scheduled movies can be found online.

Of course, Santa will also be making appearances for photo ops. Price for the photos start at $13.


On December 10, shop the second annual Light Up UCF Holiday Market, featuring local artisans and their crafts. This holiday market under the stars is a perfect way for you to come out and wrap up all of your holiday shopping while supporting small, local businesses.


It’s free to wander around, and check out the Holiday lights, but there is a charge for the rides ($4.25-$6.50). There is also a charge for using the outdoor tented ice skating rink ($12 nightly skating/$19.75 nightly unlimited skate and rides pass), and for carriage rides (starting at $5 per person).

Tickets for the rides, and more info, is available at the CFE Arena Box Office or online at Parking is FREE for Light Up UCF patrons – please be sure to tell the parking attendant that you are on site for Light Up UCF.

[Image courtesy CFE Arena]

About Michelle Snow

Michelle is the owner and editor of CitySurfing Orlando. She also owns, is a freelance writer specializing in travel and entertainment, and has authored/co-authored four guidebooks on Orlando and Florida. She lives in Orlando near Disney, and hears Magic Kingdom fireworks every night.
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