Reenactors defending St. Augustine during the Colonial Night Watch. Free Event

Colonial Night Watch

Saturday, December 4, 2021 | 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Experience St. Augustine history and join the parade of the Colonial Night Watch in the nation's oldest city.

Activities at Colonial Quarter throughout day; Grand Illumination Procession from Castillo to Plaza at 7 p.m.
(732) 309-2332
  • After a one year hiatus, the Colonial Night Watch will once again take place, this year on December 4, 2021, from 10:00 a.m. to 7:45 p.m. Due to Covid, no events will be held at the Castillo this year.

    The St. Augustine Garrison of Historic Florida Militia and the Colonial Quarter will host The Colonial Night Watch on Saturday, December 4, 2021. This popular annual event recreates historic Night Watches in garrison towns, where any citizen still on the streets after the city gates were locked, were required to carry a light so they could be seen and identified by the Night Watch.

    Activities begin at the Colonial Quarter where, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Spanish, French, British and Native American Living History Interpreters portray events of colonial St. Augustine from 1739 through 1784. Visitors can observe a working blacksmith and leather worker, as well as pewter molding, loom weaving, medical instrument demonstration and cooking demonstrations. In addition, soldiers will perform military drills that include cannon and musket firings. British Naval reenactors will have a presentation, and visitors will be able to make Native American items and trade bead bracelets and necklaces for items such as those the Native Americans found valuable during that period.

    A schedule of demonstrations will be posted at the entrances to the Colonial Quarter.

    The Colonial Night Watch culminates in a torchlit parade, starting at the Castillo de san Marcos at 7:00 p.m. From the Castillo, the parade will march to the City Gate and down St. George Street to the Plaza de la Constitución, where it stops at the Governor's House Cultural Center and Museum.

    Parade participates will be greeted with a welcoming speech at the Government House, which will be followed by a “Volley of Joy” by soldiers and militia, as they sing Christmas carols to ring in the holiday season.

    The public is invited to follow the parade to the Plaza and is encouraged to participate in singing Christmas carols.

    Admission: FREE

    When: Events on Saturday, December 4, 2021, will include day-long activities at the Colonial Quarter from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and the torchlit Colonial Night Watch parade, which begins at 7:00 p.m. 

    Where: The Colonial Quarter is located at 33 St. George Street. The Colonial Night Watch parade begins at the Castillo de San Marcos, proceeds west to the City Gates and south down St. George Street to the Plaza de la Constitution.

    Above photo courtesy of Jackie Hird.

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