PUNTA GORDA/ENGLEWOOD BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 17 2017) – The City of Punta Gorda and local sponsors extend a festive invitation to the community to the annual Christmas celebration, “Light up the Night,” on Friday, Dec. 1, 2017. This holiday event will be held between 5:30 – 8 p.m. on the corner of W. Marion Avenue and Taylor Street with the tree lighting at 7:15 p.m.

In addition to holiday cheer, people attending Light up the Night are encouraged to bring their own seating and utilize the free parking at Herald Court Centre. For public safety purposes, the City will be closing West Marion Ave from US 41 North to Sullivan Street and Taylor Street from Herald Court to West Retta Esplanade starting at 3 p.m. Toys for Tots will be collecting new, unwrapped toys for children in need in the community. Additional information can be found online at www.pgorda.us or find our event “Light up the Night” on Facebook.

Light up the Night is also the first night of Punta Gorda Founder’s Day Week, a weeklong celebration of the city’s founders and leaders. Visit www.puntagordafoundersweek.com for a schedule of historic and holiday-themed events

Located halfway between Tampa and Naples on the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Punta Gorda /Englewood Beach is a charming collection of nine coastal communities surrounding the state’s second largest harbor. Florida’s premier year-round eco-tourism destination, the area offers a pristine unspoiled beauty. In 2014, Port Charlotte was named the top “U.S. Best Value Destination” by Trivago (the world’s largest online hotel search site), and the Charlotte Sports Park, spring training home of the Tampa Bay Rays, was voted “Best Spring Training Facility” by readers of USA TODAY. A haven for outdoor enthusiasts, Punta Gorda / Englewood Beach has been named one of SAIL magazine’s “10 Greatest Places to Sail in the United States,” ranked by Golf Digest as “Third Best Place to Live and Play Golf in America,” and rated by MONEY magazine as one of the “Best Places to Live in the South.” Englewood was named second of the Top Ten emerging travel destinations in the U.S. by TripAdvisor.com. The area is served by five airports: The Punta Gorda Airport (PDG) with private and charter air service, Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ), Southwest Florida International Airport, Ft. Myers, (RSW), St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) and Tampa International Airport (TPA). For more information on visiting Punta Gorda / Englewood Beach visit PureFlorida.com or call1-800-652-6090.