Fall means festival time in Cape Coral. November ushers in the annual Coconut Festival at Sun Splash Family Waterpark.
“It’s the city’s birthday party celebration,” said Todd King, special events coordinator for Cape Coral Parks & Recreation. “We’re looking forward to the whole town coming out and having a great time.”
The four-day celebration of the city’s near half-century in Southwest Florida kicks off next Thursday and wraps up Sunday, Nov. 15. Visitors are treated to all kinds of live entertainment, carnival rides, games, food, contests, two fireworks displays and much more.
Thursday is the Sneak Peak kickoff event with free admission for those wearing carnival ride wristbands, football games shown on the jumbo TV screen in the Fuccillo Kia party tent, carnival rides, vendors and much more. Sneak Peak runs from 5-10 p.m.
Adult admission is $7 per day with children under age 5 admitted free. All-day carnival wristbands for unlimited rides are $25 at the gate.
Parking is free at Sun Splash, but somewhat limited. Event visitors are encouraged to arrive early to be assured of a parking space. The event normally draws upwards of 30,000 visitors over four days.
Friday is Coco Country Night from 5 p.m. till midnight. The main performance stage is all country entertainment by Blaire Hanks at 6:30, CAM at 7:30 and Chris Janson at 9:30, following the first of two fireworks displays.
“The performers are all new, up and coming national performers,” said King. “Janson will perform his hit single ‘Buy Me a Boat.'”
Hawaiian and Polynesian style dance groups are joined by a Cirque du Soleil style troop performing on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.
Saturday is Coco Rock ‘N Roll Night from noon to midnight featuring two tribute bands performing ZZ Top and AC/DC hit songs plus the headline concert by Blue Oyster Cult.
“The fun thing about these tribute bands is they do everything in character,” said King. “That’s the fun and novelty of their performing the songs we all know. You actually think you’re watching ZZ Top and AC/DC.”
ZZ’s Best gives its tribute performance at 6 p.m. followed by Back in Black’s tribute to AC/DC at 7:30. The last fireworks display goes off at 9, followed by Blue Oyster Cult at 9:30.
Sunday’s events begin at noon and close down at 9 p.m.
“Sunday is more a family day,” said King. “We turn the focus on the community. We’ll have local school and community groups performing gymnastics, musicians and singing.”
Football fans can watch the NFL games on the jumbo TV screen in the Kia party tent.
Sun Splash is located at 400 Santa Barbara Blvd.
For more information call 239-573-3128, or visit www.cocofest.com.