Upcoming Special Events


Azalea Festival 5k

Come kick off the Azalea Festival with our annual Azalea 5K!  The race is March 14thand is the opening event for the festival, which takes place in VLPRA’s Drexel Park.
On-site check in will open at 7:00 AM at the Valdosta Early College Academy (VECA) located at 1605 Azalea Drive. VLPRA encourages advanced registration but will accept race day registration. The 5K begins with a mass start at 8:00 AM. The race will start and finish at VECA.

The event is open to all ages and all fitness levels. Paying participants will get t-shirts while supplies last. There will be medals for the top overall male and female and for the top male and female and in each age division. It’s only $15 for advanced registration. The price goes up to $20 the day before the race.  Runners, walkers, strollers, and well behaved dogs on leashes are welcome.

Date: Saturday, 3/14/20
Time: Check in at 7AM; Race at 8AM
Location: VECA (1605 Azalea Drive)
Cost: $15 advance/ $20 after 3/13

Movie poster for film Wonder Park

Movie in the Park

Bring the whole family for a FREE movie in the park!  We will show the animated film "Wonder Park" at the soccer field at South Lowndes Recreation Complex in Lake Park.  It’s completely free and no registration is required.  Bring a blanket or chairs for seating. Picnics are welcome!  We will have limited concessions (cash only).  All children must be accompanied by an adult. 

Date: Saturday, March 21st

Time: 7:30 P.M. -9:00 P.M.

Where: South Lowndes Recreation Complex (6440 Ocean Pond Ave. Lake Park)

Price: FREE

Father-Son campout

Go camping in the outfield!  Boys ages 4 & up can spend the night on the South Lowndes Ballfield with their father (or adult male family member) at VLPRA’s Father/Son Campout!  Activities will include a cookout, games, s’mores, night baseball & a movie on the backstop. We provide all the activities plus dinner, s’mores, and breakfast Saturday morning.  You bring your own tent and sleeping bags.  Tent setup begins at 6:00pm Friday. Space is extremely limited.
Date:         April 17th- April 18th
Time:        6:00 pm – 8:00 am
Location:     South Lowndes Ballfields (6440 Ocean Pond Ave, Lake Park)
Cost:        $35 per dad
Registration:    TBD

VLPRA's Six Days of Christmas

Cookies with Claus

Decorate a gingerbread man, craft a one-of-a kind ornament, and mingle with Kris Kringle at VLPRA’s Cookies with Claus! We will provide cookies, frosting, and ALL the sprinkles so each member of the family can decorate their own sweet treat.  Then make an ornament that will brighten your tree for years to come. Santa Claus will be there so be sure to tell him your Christmas wishes! No registration is required- just come and leave at your leisure. It’s only $2 per person (includes one cookie and one ornament per participant).  Cash only.  All children must be accompanied by an adult.

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Where: VLPRA Main Office (1901 North Forrest St.)

Price $2 per person

Image of two kids with Santa Claus.

Azalea Winds Christmas Concert

Kick off the Christmas Season with a FREE Christmas Symphony! The Azalea Winds Community Band presents their 2019 Christmas show, "New Age Holiday". The band will play holiday music for all ages.  No registration is required and the show is completely free.  

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Where: VLPRA’s Senior Center (1360 E Park Ave)

Price: FREE

Ugly Sweater 5K

Wear your ugliest Christmas Sweater and join VLPRA for our fourth annual Ugly Sweater 5K on December 14th! We will have awards for overall male/female and top male/female in each age group as well a special award for the Ugliest Sweater. Advanced registration begins November 1st and goes through December 13th. It’s only $15 to pre-register and $20 to sign up on race day. Register by December 3rd to guarantee your race shirt. We cannot guarantee shirts for anyone registering after December 3rd.  Runners, joggers, walkers, strollers, & leashed dogs are welcome!

We look forward to seeing your ugliest sweater!! 

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Where: TBD

Price: TBD

Image of runners in ugly sweaters preparing to race.

Spaghetti with Santa

You’re invited to a dinner party with Kris Kringle! Join us for a meal to remember! We’ll have story time with Santa, a catered pasta dinner, & one-on-one time with the Jolly Old Elf himself! Space is very limited. 

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Where: VLPRA Main Office (1901 North Forrest St.) 

Price: $8 per person

Image of a family at a table in the park.
Image of Dr. Seuss' The Grinch Movie Poster

Movie In the PArk

Bring the family together to watch a FREE holiday movie in the park as part of our Six Days of Christmas! We will be showing "Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch" (PG) on our massive inflatable screen. No registration necessary- just show up with a blanket or chairs. Picnics are welcome! Limited concessions will be available (cash only). All children must be accompanied by an adult. 

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Where: Downtown Valdosta- Behind the Courthouse

Price: FREE

**In partnership with Main Street Valdosta & the City of Valdosta**



Types of Events

Movies in the park

VLPRA offers free movies in our parks and public places in Valdosta & Lowndes County throughout the year. Movies are usually family friendly features with G and PG ratings and we often show big name blockbusters from Disney and Pixar.  We sometimes offer a PG-13 film for an older audience.  We show the movies on our massive inflatable 20-foot screen starting at dusk.  Please check above for individual dates.


VLPRA is proud to offer the largest public fireworks display in South Georgia.  Our fireworks are always on July 4th and start between 9:15 PM - 9:30 PM.  The location is TBD.

VLPRA/MOody afb fishing rodeo

VLPRA partners with Moody Air Force Base each year to offer our annual Fishing Rodeo.  Anyone can fish, but the competition is open to 5-18 year olds in separate categories.  The rodeo is usually held in September or October of each year at a minimal cost with live bait provided.  We have a category for bank fishing and for boat fishing. 

Stocked Cart Race

Runners, start your engines for the wackiest, most fun event of the year!  Our annual Stocked Cart Race is basically a 50-yard dash where runners push decorated shopping carts.  Businesses, schools, churches, families, and groups of friends enter as teams.  Teams are given one shopping cart each to decorate and race. We have a double elimination bracket and race head to head until we have a fastest cart.

The most important part of the event: the entry fee is food for Hungry at Home.  Each team must bring at least $25 of food (no money, please).  The more food, the better as we hand out awards for most food raised, best decorated cart, and fastest cart. Hungry at Home is a local non-profit that sends food home on Fridays with kids who don't have enough to eat on the weekends.  All donated food must be kid-friendly and not require a can opener or stove.  Think: pop top Chef Boyardee meals, granola bars, oatmeal packets, pop top tuna kits, vienna sausages, raisins, etc.  Find out more about Hungry at Home at their website: www.hungryathome.org.

The Stocked Cart Race happens November 9th at Lowes Home Improvement on St. Augustine Road.  Registration runs from September to Race Day.

Father/Son Campout

Go camping in the outfield!  Boys ages four and up can spend the night on the South Lowndes Ball Field with their father or adult male family member at this overnight event.  Activities include a cookout, games, s'mores, night baseball, and a movie on the backstop.  Dinner is provided Friday night and breakfast is provided Saturday morning.  Bring your own tent and bag chairs; tent set up begins at 6:00 PM Friday.  Space is limited.  Event typically happens in the fall.  Fees are TBD.

Six Days of Christmas

VLPRA's Six Days of Christmas features six days of holiday fun spread out through the month of December.  We show movies, have a free Christmas concert, eat a catered meal with Santa Claus, create gingerbread cookie masterpieces, and cap it off with an Ugly Christmas Sweater 5K.