The City of Clarksville last night kicked off the 12th Annual Christmas on the Cumberland, which continues until January 3rd. The annual free holiday display features over 1,000,000 individual Lights in a amazing Christmas display that spans the entire length of McGregor Park in Downtown Clarksville.
Entertainment was provided by the band Short Notice, a passionate group of musicians whose name is derived ability to work a set list as spontaneously, as they draw the attention of their audience in short order. The band invited children up to dance to their lively Christmas tunes.
The weather last night was the best in years, and it showed in the number of people in attendance. Over the last couple of years the kickoff had been marred by miserably cold and wet weather.
Clarksville Parks and Recreation Director Mark Tummons kicked off the ceremony. “This is one of the biggest crowds I think we have ever had, and I really appreciate everyone coming out tonight!”, he said. He then proceeded to thank those who made this event possible starting off with the Clarksville Department of Parks and Recreation Staff including Gary Hart,Kevin Cowling, James Clark, and “all their staff who spends weeks putting all this together.” He then thanked the Special Events staff Jennifer Byard, Niki Crow, and Matt Nixon for the events they coordinate throughout the year. He also credited the marketing staff Candice Waite and Bethany McCaslin for getting the word about the event out to the community. Tummons also recognized the work other city departments do to get the City of Clarksville decorated for the coming Holiday Season especially the Clarksville Street Department who decorated downtown.
After Recognizing the sponsors Tummons introduced Clarksville Mayor Johnny Piper. Mayor Piper had been a big part of promoting the Riverfront in Clarksville including the Christmas on the Cumberland event. He said “This is certainly a wonderful event that we always look forward to every year, for the children and families to come out and enjoy the Wonderful Christmas time.” He continued “You all remember the May floods, They went directly from cleaning up from the flood to getting ready for Riverfest. Immediately after Riverfest they started getting ready for tonight.”
Mayor Piper then recognized the city council members who were in attendance, Deanna McLaughlin, Marc Harris, Jeff Burkhart, Candy Johnson, David Allen, Joel Wallace, Geno Grubbs, Bill Summers, and James Lewis. Also in attendance was newly elected council member Kaye Jones, and County Commissioner Tommy Vallejos.
Mayor Piper told the crowd to mark their calendars for the opening of the new Fort Defiance visitors center on December 9th, and on December 16th for the groundbreaking for the pedestrian bridge for the Clarksville Greenway.
Schedule of Events
- Nov. 23, 6:30pm: Grand Opening
- Nov. 26 & 27, 6-8pm: Santa’s Workshop, Cookies & Crafts at the Museum, Visit with Santa Claus
- Dec. 10 & 11, 6-8pm: Local Dance Academies, Visit with Santa Claus
- Dec. 17 & 18, 6-8pm: Choirs & Carolers and Visit with Santa Claus
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you charge admission?
There is no admission charge to view the lights at Christmas on the Cumberland.
How long is the display?
Christmas on the Cumberland stretches over seven-tenths of a mile along the McGregor Park RiverWalk.
Can I bring my pets?
Yes, you may bring your pets to walk through the park during the lighting display; however we do ask pet owners to clean up after their pets. Pets are not allowed in the stage/audience areas during the lighting ceremony or during public performances.
Do you offer concessions?
Vendors are contracted to sell concessions on weekends during event hours.
Do you offer wheelchairs or strollers?
We do offer a limited number of manual wheelchairs for visitors with special needs, free of charge courtesy of Warren’s Apothecary. We do not offer stroller rentals.
I’m traveling from out of town. Where is McGregor Park?
The McGregor Park RiverWalk is located at 640 N. Riverside Drive (US 41-A).
The park is approximately 7.5 miles from I-24 at Exit 4. It is 43 miles from Nashville via I-24 West; 25-5 miles from Hopkinsville, KY via I-24 East. For further directions visit Google Maps.
How can I find out more?
For more information about Christmas on the Cumberland, please call 645-7476