The vast majority of cites and town across the state of Michigan have their own local celebrations and traditions, and Rochester is no exception. Holiday season festivities, take on a different meaning in Rochester, as its residents gear up to celebrate with their unique traditions.

An image from this years' ongoing 10th annual Big Bright Lights Show (2015). Originally published on:

An image from this years’ ongoing 10th annual Big Bright Lights Show (2015). Originally published on:

Big Bright Light Show 

Since 2006, The Big Bright Light show, has been adopted as an annual tradition as the buildings on Main Street in Downtown Rochester are completely engulfed by a sea of bright colorful lights. The big bright light show beings in late November, and is kept running until mid January; work on placing the lights begins a month in advance in October. The spectacle is free and ends a few weeks before Rochester’s New Year’s celebration, the Fire and Ice Festival.

Fire and Ice Festival

A family sledding during Rochester's 2014 Fire and Ice festival. Originally published on:

A family sledding during Rochester’s 2014 Fire and Ice festival. Originally published on:

Fire and Ice 2016: 2016 fire and ice event schedule

Organized by Oakland County, the Fire and Ice Festival has been run for eight consecutive years in Rochester. The festival begins in late January and is usually lasts for about 3 or 4 days. The festival includes a wide range of activites for both children and adults, additionally the Big Bright Light show is on display every night of the festival. Despite the festival’s short length, the upcoming 2016 edition of the festival that is going to run from January 22-24 has events planned on all three days from 9:00 am to midnight. Some of this year events include, an ice carving competition, dog sledding, open ice skating, and many more.





Rochester Hometown Christmas Parade

West Junior High band in the parade, ca.1967. Originally published on:

West Junior High band in the parade, ca.1967. Originally published on:


Dating back to 1951, the Hometown Christmas Parade is oldest city-wide holiday tradition that is still celebrated in Rochester. The parade is held annually in Rochester on the first week of December, most of Rochester’s local businesses, organizations, and schools participate in the parade resulting in thousands of people participating in the parade and tens of thousands more spectating. With over 3,500 participants each year the parade is the largest of its kind in the State of Michigan.

A preview the 2015 edition of the parade:

This years is parade will be 64th edition of the Rochester Hometown Christmas Parade; it will be held on December 6th, and sponsored by Genisys Credit Union. Aside from broadcasting the parade on local television the parade will be live streamed on Rochester Hill’s city website. This latest edition of the Rochester Christmas parade is expected to exceed 80,000 spectators In keeping with tradition two Grand Marshals were selected to be recognized on December 3rd and during the parade. Long time Rochester-Avon historians, Rod and Susan Wilson, were chosen as this years grand marshals due to their contributions in preserving the history of the greater Rochester area.