Here’s an overview of our major annual events. Check the Events Calendar to keep abreast of everything.
Lake City, Florida’s Springlands hosts one of the Sunshine State’s most important music and cultural events, the Florida Folk Festival, which has been ongoing for more than 70 years. It’s a three-day celebration of music, dance, stories, crafts and food, all with a Florida theme. The festival, held on Memorial Day Weekend, features more than 300 performers who evoke the state’s heritage. The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park comes alive with a concert stage, a Folklife Area, and demonstrations throughout the park. You can even shop in a crafts area and sample some traditional Florida foods.
Yes, we love our history here in Lake City, Florida’s Springlands. And we have two major annual events that celebrate our unique past.
The festival celebrates Native American and immigrant cultures with music and dancing, historic camps, demonstrations of centuries-old skills, arts and crafts, food and drink vendors, and more. The fest also presents a full-scale reenactment of the 1836 Battle of San Felasco Hammock, part of the Second Seminole War.
Another famous military confrontation, The Battle of Olustee, is remembered with a major reenactment. This one takes us back to Feb. 20, 1864, and the largest Civil War battle waged in Florida. The reenactment literally requires a cast of thousands, as the skirmish pitted 5,500 Union soldiers against 5,000 Confederate troops. Locals dress in period costumes and full military regalia.
The Olustee Festival is held Friday and Saturday during the weekend of February 20th. The festival features over 200 booths from craft vendors all over Florida and beyond, as well as food vendors and a kids area. On Sunday of that same weekend is a full reenactment at the Olustee Battlefield Historic State Park. Typically this includes the demonstration battle, living history presentations and ceremonies, medical demonstrations, educational exhibits, artillery firing at night, an old-fashioned barn dance and more.
Lake City does it up big for the holidays, too. On the Saturday after Thanksgiving, downtown’s Main Street bursts with Christmas spirit as the lights at Olustee Park, as well as thousands of lights decorating downtown businesses, are lit at dusk. Throughout the holiday season, Olustee Park bubbles over with entertainment by local acts, as well as craftspeople and artisans displaying their creations. On the second Saturday of December, the Annual Christmas Parade, with a hundred lighted entries, begins at dusk, ending in Olustee Park with the arrival of Santa Claus. Parents and kids can visit Mr. Claus in his gingerbread house Mondays through Saturdays.