Now that we’ve had our fill of candy corn and trunk-or-treats, it’s time to focus on turkey, trimmings, and gatherings with friends and family. And since Smith Mountain Lake is perfectly situated between Franklin and Bedford Counties, there’s a seamless celebration of holiday festivities to explore.

The season kicks off with the annual Franklin County Courthouse Tree Lighting Ceremony on Friday, November 24th at 5:30pm. The ceremony takes place on the lawns of the historic Franklin County Courthouse in Rocky Mount and features a concert from the Benjamin Franklin Middle School Band.  This event is sponsored by the Community Partnership for Revitalization and Franklin County Parks & Recreation.

The 6th Annual Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting in Downtown Moneta will be held on Friday, December 1st, 2017 from 6pm-10pm. This event takes place at Celebration Square and features a variety of vendors, music, and a visit from Santa. Proceeds benefit the Moneta Fire Department.

The 38th Annual Franklin County Christmas Parade takes place on Sunday, December 3rd at 3pm. Spectators line the streets of Rocky Mount to revel in Christmas cheer as parade floats, marching bands, and Santa himself usher in the holiday season. The 1.3-mile route begins on Tanyard Road and winds through Franklin Street to the Historic Rocky Mount Train Depot.

The Westlake Tree Lighting Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, December 7th at Westlake Towne Center from 5:30pm- 8pm. This popular event features music, entertainment, gift card giveaways, and a visit from Santa. An 8pm showing of “It’s a Wonderful Life” will take place at Westlake Cinema for those who donate a new, unwrapped toy to We Care of Franklin County during the event.

For a full list of Smith Mountain Lake holiday attractions, make sure to check out the event calendar at