Due to the uncertainty of the retail business scene this year on Sanibel and Captiva islands, the SanCap Chamber has postponed its traditional Holiday Luminary until next Dec. 6 and 7, as a kick-off to the

13-month celebration of the city’s 50th anniversary. The chamber, however, is supporting island businesses and organizations planning special promotions, “mini-Luminary” events, and other celebrations during the holiday season with luminary bags and publicity efforts.


“The holiday spirit lives on these islands despite Luminary’s postponement this year,” said John Lai, chamber president and CEO. “The chamber is helping to promote activities that will keep the spirit alive and visitors visiting during the days between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. The city of Sanibel will once again decorate the Periwinkle Way bike path canopy with lights to add to the festivities.”


Here are some highlights island businesses and organizations have already planned. To add your events and promotions to the Luminary Season calendar, contact Aaron Walton, SanCap Chamber operations manager, at [email protected] or 239-472-8759.


  • Nov. 24: ‘Tween Waters Island Resort on Captiva Island lights up a gigantic tree and its beloved holiday decorations accompanied by live music, snow, and fireworks. Go online to learn about parking options. tween-waters.com/tree-lighting-celebration/
  • Nov. 29: J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge has scheduled Holiday Shopping afterhours at the Refuge Nature Store from 4 to 6 p.m., with refreshments and special promotions. dingdarlingsociety.org
  • Dec. 1: The Community House and St. Michael and All Angels Church jointly celebrate Sanibel Lights from 4 to 7 p.m., to include a tree-lighting, Christmas carols, a bounce house and photo booth, the Sanibel School Elementary Choir, hot dogs, punch and cookies, and adult beverages for purchase. sanibelcommunityhouse.net, saintmichaels-sanibel.org
  • Dec. 1: Sanibel Historical Museum and Village hosts “Deck the Shore” from 4 to 6 p.m. with a tree-lighting, caroling, cookies, and beverages. sanibelmuseum.org
  • Dec. 1: Holiday Open House at BIG ARTS runs 5 to 7 p.m. Stroll the three galleries, shop for unique holiday gifts, visit with Santa, enjoy beverages and bites, and don’t miss the live artist instructor demonstrations. bigarts.org
  • Dec. 1: Bailey’s General Store and the Grog Shop cooperatively greet visitors with apple cider and beverage tastings at the historic service station at Bailey Center on Sanibel from 5 to 7 p.m.
  • Dec. 1: Sanibel retail shops that have relocated or expanded to Bell Tower shops in Fort Myers will participate in the Annual Bell Tower Tree Lighting & Luminary from 6 to 9 p.m. Santa and the Grinch make appearances along with other family activities. belltowerfl.com
  • Dec. 2: F.I.S.H. of SANCAP has planned its annual 10K run, this year with an added 5K option, to coordinate with Luminary activities. Following the run, it hosts its benefit Sound+Waves Music Festival starting 5 p.m. on the beach at the ‘Tween Waters Island Resort. Fireworks follow live performances by eight artists. fishofsancap.org
  • Dec. 2: Sanibel Rec Holiday Event & Youth Reindeer Run brings pizza, BBQ, hot cocoa, face painting, crafts, a bounce house, crafts, and pictures with Santa to the Sanibel Recreation Center 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Youth Reindeer Run kicks off at 11 a.m. inside the gym. mysanibel.com
  • Dec. 8: Jerry’s Foods celebrates from 5 to 8 p.m. with food and wine sampling, Boy Scout hot dogs by donation, ornament decorating, caroling, and Santa’s arrival. jerrysofsanibel.com
  • Dec. 8: Sanibel Community Church celebrates its Luminary Friday, Dec. 8, from 6 to 9 p.m. with a free petting zoo, pony rides, arts and crafts stations, a snow pit, food, firepits for s’mores, and Christmas lights. sanibelchurch.com
  • Dec. 13: The “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge hosts a free, neighborly Holiday Ice Cream Social at The Roost outdoor pavilion at “Ding” Darling beginning 2 p.m. dingdarlingsociety.org



The SanCap Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to promoting the prosperity of its members and preserving the quality of life of our community. The Chamber plays a key role in facilitating communication and cooperation between business, residents, and government to enhance the economic health of the islands. Its website, sanibel-captiva.org, receives over 1.3 million visits per year. For more information about the chamber, visit sanibel-captiva.org or contact John Lai, president and CEO, at 239-472-2348 or [email protected].