Christmas Spirit Thrives in El Dorado

The Union County Courthouse during the holidays in El Dorado
The Union County Courthouse during the holidays in El Dorado

El Dorado is the place to be during the holidays. Below are some sights not to miss there during the holiday season!


The square at the 1928 Union County Courthouse transforms into a postcard worthy vision of Christmas each year. The downtown stores and city's historic building are beautifully decorated for those strolling the streets. Special holiday features like free train rides around the square can also be found downtown during certain days of the season.

Downtown El Dorado during the holidays

There are many special light displays to see around downtown too including in the Murphy Arts District. 

Downtown holiday scene in El Dorado

Annual Traditions

The town also shows their Christmas spirit each year during the El Dorado Christmas Parade, which has been running since 1979 and is now known as the largest Christmas parade in South Arkansas. Special holiday themed shows and events can also be found at venues throughout town. The KTVE Christmas Tree, which was first displayed in town in the mid-1960s and quickly became a must-see Christmas display, is also an annual iconic local tradition. The tree was first displayed on news station KTVE’s former studio on a 260-foot communications tower. 

KTVE Christmas Tree

The MAD Ice Rink!

Another big holiday draw in El Dorado is the MAD On Ice Skating Rink, where an ice rink will be located in the MAD amphitheater for people to skate on throughout the holidays. Skate rentals will also be available there and the rink will be made of real ice. 

Holiday Light Extravaganza 

Nearby in Smackover, the holiday spirit continues with the annual Holiday Light Extravaganza at the Arkansas Museum of Natural Resources. The lights are turned on every Friday and Saturday night during the season and while there you can walk through the museum's oil field park to enjoy the outside light displays and an interesting holiday experience. 

Downtown Lodging 

Places to overnight downtown include the Downtown Guest Quarters and The Haywood

The Haywood in El Dorado

For more details on festive events taking place throughout the season in town, check on Main Street El Dorado's website at