Castle Rock Starlighting2020-03-23T14:38:18-06:00

This event is brought to you by the Castle Rock Chamber of Commerce

The Castle Rock “Lighting of the Star” has been a community event shared by residents dating back to 1936. The same spirit of volunteerism, generosity and love of tradition exists today as Castle Rock businesses and residents prepare to celebrate Starlighting downtown on the Saturday before Thanksgiving.  The 2020 Castle Rock Starlighting is Saturday, Nov. 21 from 2 PM to 7 PM in Downtown Castle Rock at Historic Wilcox Square.

As one of Castle Rock Chamber’s signature events, this year’s celebration will again include: hot chocolate, non profit booths, strolling entertainers, live entertainment and of course Santa will be present for photos and visits. Don’t forget to enjoy the Rink at the Rock, an outdoor ice skating rink in downtown Castle Rock as well. Non profit groups are invited to participate in this well-respected community event to spread the word about their organization.  Click below to register, space is limited.

Non Profits Sign Up
Food Truck Sign Up
Starlighting Poem

Hot chocolate, Non profit booths, Strolling entertainers, Live entertainment, Fireworks and of course Santa!

2020 Castle Rock Starlighting
Saturday, November, 21, 2020
Time: 2 PM to 7 PM
Historic Wilcox Square – Downtown Castle Rock

The Starlighting ceremony will begin promptly at 5:00 pm and the lighting of the Star will be at approximately 5:30 pm, it may be earlier.  This year our ceremony emcee is TBD.

Santa will be available for visits at the PS Miller Library 2-4 pm and at the Fire Station 2-6pm.

This event is presented by the Castle Rock Chamber of Commerce.  

Be Sure to View Entertainment Tab For The Complete List of Entertainment!

Ceremony Highlights:

Come stroll & shop our local stores around Historic Wilcox Square.Visit with non profit organizations and sponsor booths. Grab a cup of hot cocoa from the Chamber booth, visit Santa and take advantage of all of the fun, free activities and entertainment.

We highly suggest taking one of 3 Free Shuttles Downtown.


Main Stage, Sponsored by: Independent Financial

  • 2:00pm Professor M
  • 4:45pm Biff Gore
  • 5:00pm Starlighting Ceremony
  • LIGHT THE STAR, we will light the star at approximately 5:30PM

The Rink Stage, Sponsored by: Whole Foods Market

2:00pm Castle Rock Ringers
3:00pm Castle Rock Chorale
4:00pm Salvation Army

The Emporium

2:00pm Grant Daniel Reed
3:00pm Julio Perez
4:00pm Marcel and Janelle
5:30pm Biff Gore “The Ambassador or Soul

Wilcox and 3rd

2:00pm Sage Canyon Choir
2:45pm La Roche Academy
3:30pm Boutique Dance Academy
4:15pm Castle Rock Dance Academy

Festival Park

2:30pm Shine Church
3:30pm New Hope Singers
4:15pm Douglas County High School


Patriot Pros Kids Zone – (Wilcox Bldg Parking Lot)

Summit Church Bounce House – (4th St between Jerry/Wilcox)

Olinger Dignity Memorial & KLOVE -Petting Zoo & Letters to Troops (Jerry St/4th)

P.S. Miller Library Activities -12pm to 4:30pm
Stop and Play, drop in at the library. Warm up, play games, coloring, & more!

Santa Visits Castle Rock!

Visits with Santa – Two Locations!

At the Castle Rock Firehouse 2-6pm

At the PS Miller Library 2-4pm

Rink at the Rock Grand Opening!


Support the Chamber!

Purchase Hot Chocolate @ the Chamber Booth!
(Spiked & Virgin) We will have Wine & Beer Too!
Time: 2-6 PM @ 2 Chamber Booths on 4th (between Wilcox/Perry) & on 3rd/Perry Roundabout
Proceeds benefit Castle Rock Chamber Starlighting fund

Starlighting Ornaments

Purchase Commemorative Starlighting Ornaments at the Chamber Booth
on 4th St (between Wilcox/Perry)

Or purchase Ornaments ONLINE– They are a special and unique, one of kind holiday gift!

View Starlighting Entertainment Schedule 

Huge Thank You to our Transportation Sponsors:


Huge Crowds Expected! Take a Free Shuttle Ride:  1:30 PM to 8:30 PM:

Please consider taking a shuttle from one of these locations.

-PURPLE SHUTTLE – Douglas County High School         (drops off at corner of 5th/Jerry at the Chamber)
NORTH PARKING LOT (2842 Front Street)

-GREEN SHUTTLE – Douglas County Fairgrounds            (drops off at the Library)
Lot 5 (500 Fairgrounds Drive)

-RED SHUTTLE – Castle Rock Adventist Hospital              (drops off at corner of 5th/Jerry at the Chamber)
Briscoe/Alexander Bldgs Parking Lots | 
SOUTH PARKING LOT 2350 Meadows Blvd Suite 300
(Please do not park in emergency or hospital parking lots.)

Note: Shuttles are location specific, make sure you get on the bus you arrived on.

Parking Garage – Jerry/Third Streets 1,2, & 3 levels – Open Parking during the event.

PLEASE NOTE:  Many roads leading into downtown will be closed from 8 am – 9 PM.

View Event Map

Road Closures:

Wilcox Street 5th to 3rd 
4th Street Jerry to Perry
Perry Street 5th to 2nd
3rd Street Wilcox to Front Street

Cars left inside the event footprint after road closures will be TOWED & IMPOUNDED at the owners expense.

Santa Visits Castle Rock!

2 Locations to Visit with Santa Claus!

PS Miller Library (2pm-4pm)

Castle Rock Firehouse (2pm-6pm)

Don’t Forget the Rink at the Rock Grand Opening Celebration

Non Profit , Dance and Singing Groups are invited to participate in this well-respected community event to spread the word about their organization/program. If you meet all of the terms/conditions criteria you may submit your information to be considered for our upcoming event.  Every great event of course needs great food!   If you have a fabulous food truck and would like to feed our hungry crowd, please apply below!

Call the Chamber for more info at 303-688-4597.

Entertainment Groups-Contact

Non Profits – Register Here

Food Trucks-Register Here


Sign Up Here!

Thank You for your Help!  Please view shifts/times sign up today!

We invite you to join the Castle Rock Chamber on Saturday, November 23rd for a day full of fun activities, culminating in the Starlighting ceremony at 5:00 pm. The lighting of the Star will be at approximately 5:30 pm followed by a fireworks show.

Help keep this wonderful tradition alive with your generous support.

Although any donation is appreciated, $100 or more will promote your family or business as a Friend of Starlighting on our website along with other Starlighting sponsors. A commemorative certificate and letter of thanks will also be mailed to you.

Starlighting Donations

Standing out in a crowd of competitors is no easy task, and it’s getting more difficult all the time. Contact the Castle Rock Chamber today to learn about the exciting sponsorship opportunities we can offer your business. Email Pam Ridler or give her a call at the Chamber (303) 688-4597.

Get your very own piece of Castle Rock memorabilia today.
Purchase gifts for family and friends.

All items will be available for pick up at the Chamber Monday-Friday, between 9:00 am & 5:00 pm.

Castle Rock Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center
420 Jerry Street
Castle Rock, CO 80104

View More Items and Order Online Here

History of the Castle Rock Star

Castle Rock is named for a large geological formation which looked to early travelers to the area like a castle on a hill. A special tradition has been observed in the town every Christmas since 1936. It has a 45 foot tall electric star which lights up the night in the town from the week before Thanksgiving until the end of the National Western Stock Show in January. The star has been a symbol to people in Castle Rock for over 80 years.

In 1936, the United States was experiencing the Great Depression.

Millions of people were out of work. There was also a drought in those years which became known as the “Dust Bowl”. Farms throughout the middle part of the country saw their crops dry up and their soil blow away. In Castle Rock, the Douglas County Fair, the community’s main annual festival, had been held only sporadically since 1930. Like people throughout the country, the citizens of Castle Rock were losing hope because of the poor economy, and the town was badly in need of a boost.

Someone heard that people in nearby Palmer Lake were talking about building a star. Community leaders in Castle Rock jumped on the idea, thinking that the star would draw travelers’ attention. They hoped people would stop in town on their travels along what was then busy Colorado Highway 85-87.

George P. Stewart owned “The Rock” in 1936, and he was happy to donate the land on which the star could alight. Men from the Works Progress Administration, who may have been staying at the local Civilian Conservation Corps Camp designed the star. Both the WPA and the CCC were federal programs designed to put Americans to work during the Depression. Forty foot steel rods were ordered from Denver and paid for with donations from the Town Council. Volunteer firemen carried the rods up

Castle Rock (no mean feat, there was no road or trail up the 290 foot tall rock then) and welded them together with gas donated by two local businesses. The manager of the local electric company donated some poles and helped string the electricity with wire donated by the Mountain States Telephone Company. When they were finished, the forty foot tall star with nearly 100 light bulbs shone from the top of Castle Rock. The star was lit around 5 pm and extinguished at midnight every night throughout the Christmas season, and burned all night on Christmas and New Year’s Eves. The star was lit every year from 1936 until 1941.

In 1941, the country was committing all its resources to win World War II, and the star was a luxury Castle Rock could no longer afford. Rationing of electricity did not allow the star to be lit, but the structure remained on top of the rock, a symbol of the sacrifices that everyone in the country was making. On August 14, 1945 the war was finally over. That night, the star was converted into a “V” for victory as people celebrated into the night at the fire station. The star was lit on December 7th of 1945, and it has been lit every Christmas season since. The star was completely rebuilt in 1949 in an effort to make it safer and sturdier, and there have been other repairs made to the structure in the succeeding years.

In 1965, a new group of community leaders, led by Mrs. Anne McConnell, started a ceremony for lighting the star. The programs included speakers from the Town of Castle Rock, choirs from the Air Force Academy and local churches, and a parade. In 1966, Mrs. Helen Lowrie Marshall, a Denver poet, wrote a poem called “The Star of Castle Rock” to commemorate the star. The poem was read at most of the starlighting ceremonies and published in the local newspaper throughout the 1960’s, 1970’s and 1980’s.

During the early 1970’s, the energy crisis briefly threatened the star lighting, but the tradition continued. For about 11 years, the ceremony was held at the Douglas County Courthouse. In 1978, the courthouse was destroyed in a fire. The starlighting was then held for a number of years on the “courthouse square”, where a new administration building for the county was constructed.

In 1999, the starlighting moved to the steps of the new police station on Perry Street in Castle Rock. After both the 1998 and the 1999 Super Bowls, the lightbulbs in the star were replaced so that they showed blue and orange in celebration of the Denver Broncos victories.

After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the star was lit for several weeks. The organizers of the Starlighting Ceremony chose a patriotic theme for their celebration, complete with flags on all the advertising for the event.

In 2015, the star was again lit with orange and blue bulbs to celebrate the Denver Broncos Superbowl 50 win over the Carolina Panthers.   Information provided by Douglas County History Research Center

We can make the 2019 STARLIGHTING the most festive event of the season for all of Castle Rock!
Decorate your storefront or building in time for Starlighting on Saturday, November 23, 2019

A certificate and collection of commemorative ornaments will be awarded to winner of each of the following categories:

• Best of Show
• Best Use of Lights
• Most Creative

Winners will be announced at the Starlighting Ceremony and in the Local News Publications and websites.

Judging will be November 22nd after 5:30pm.  Register Your Business Location Here to be considered.

Title Sponsor:

Gold Sponsors:

Silver Sponsors:

Bronze Sponsors:


Community Partners: