It was three years ago that Sandi, our beloved sand-sculpted holiday tree, first graced Downtown West Palm Beach with her presence. She was just a young sapling back then (or sandling if you will), but over the years she has blossomed into one of our most beautiful and recognizable holiday icons. Her sassy spunk combined with her physical beauty and towering presence has made the holiday season a true Downtown spectacle.
This year, Sandi is back bigger than ever! Seriously, she’s up to 35 feet tall and weighs 600 tons, and she’ll be reigning over all of Sandi Land for the entire month of December. So as we prepare to welcome her back this evening with an event as big as she is, we thought it would be a good idea to give you a rundown of all the holiday fun you can expect from Sandi and her surroundings this season.
Holiday Tree Lighting – Clematis By Night: December 4
Sandi’s been slowly working herself back into holiday shape, and she’s finally ready for her big 2014 debut. Decked out in the finest sea-themed holiday decor and topped with a starfish, Sandi will be lit up for the first time tonight, and you bet she’s expecting an audience. So come down to the waterfront from 6-10 p.m. to see for yourself and enjoy a free concert from soul-tribute band The Motowners, as well as national recording artists Ryan Cabrera and JT Hodges. Plus, there will be tons of kids activities, a tropical gift boutique and a very special visit from Santa Claus himself.
And if you think this is a one-time thing, you must have forgotten who you’re dealing with. Sandi will be strutting her stuff and shaking it down all month long with nightly light and sound shows!
Four More 25-Ton Sand Sculptures
You didn’t actually think someone of Sandi’s stature would travel without an entourage, did you? This year she’ll be flanked by four more 25-ton sand sculptures set up throughout Sandi Land.
- On the grassy area near E.R. Bradley’s, you’ll find a “Candy Bar,” where fish and mermaids meet for a merry round of hot cocoa, root beer floats and peppermint milkshakes.
- Down by the seawall at the intersection of Datura Street and Flagler Drive, you’ll run into an angelfish and some other sea creatures kissing under a mistletoe around giant candy kisses – that’s “Merry Kiss-Much?”
- The music festival under the sea goes by the name, “Lolli-pop-a-pa-looza.”
- And last but not least is “Hot Cocoa Beach” – Santa’s sugar coated seaside retreat.
If you didn’t find that perfect selfie companion in Sandi’s group, don’t worry – you can visit SnowieVille and build your own. Open until December 30 on the great lawn along Flagler Drive from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., SnowieVille affords you an opportunity you probably never thought you’d get in South Florida – the chance to sculpt your own life-size, tropical snowman for a seasonal snapshot to remember.
Golfing is something you definitely could expect to do in Florida, but this isn’t your average country club. Peppermint Putt-Putt is this holiday season’s premier mini golf experience. You can play nine holes of mini golf with your family and friends on the beautiful Waterfront from now until December 30 from 9a.m. to 9p.m., all for only $2.50! (Plus a $2.50 refundable club deposit.)
Traditional Downtown Events with a Festive Flair
One of the best parts about Sandi’s return is her infectious holiday spirit. With all the energy surrounding Sandi Land and the fun slate of festive events and decorations that will be all over the Downtown area, some classic Downtown activities are adopting a holiday theme for you to enjoy as well:
Screen on the Green: Friday, December 12; 8-11 p.m.
The popular free outdoor movie screening experience that comes to the Downtown WPB Waterfront on the second Friday of each month is running a special holiday-themed double feature this December. Santa will be on-site from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., and kids can decorate cardboard boxes with wrapping paper and ribbon to become walking presents. “Merry Madagascar” will play from 8 to 8:30 p.m. before a short break for a holiday gift parade. After the gift parade, the classic family comedy “Home Alone” will play from 8:45 to 11 p.m.
Clematis by Night Holiday Circus: Thursday, December 18; 6-9 p.m.
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s circus presents “Built to Amaze” Holiday Edition, a free preview of their holiday circus on the Waterfront Great Lawn. Kids can even see real elephants during the show!
Sunday on the Waterfront: Sunday, December 21; 3-6 p.m.
The weekly free concert series gets a special dose of holiday spirit as the Aloha Islanders Tropical Holiday Spectacular presents authentic, high-energy Polynesian entertainment for audiences of all ages.
See You at Sandi Land
As you can tell, the return of our giant holiday tree is a pretty big deal in Downtown West Palm Beach. But the best way to get in the holiday spirit isn’t to read about what’s happening, it’s to experience it yourself. With that in mind, we wish you a happy holiday season and hope to see you soon in #DowntownWPB!