A Lake Placid tradition: The Caladium Festival

Posted on July 28, 2020 by Brooke Jones


If you’ve ever made the trip to Florida’s beautiful Lake Placid, you’ve heard of the city’s favorite summertime event – the Caladium Festival! As the official Caladium capital of the world, Lake Placid’s history is rooted in this unique plant.

Caladium has grown in Lake Placid since the 1940s, and to this day, grows for miles on farm lands in the city. The beauty in this plant comes from its simplicity; its growing requirements are very minimal and its vibrant leaves are odor free. For years, Caladium has become not only the decorative landscape plant choice of Lake Placid residents, but for many people across the world.

This year would have marked the Caladium Festival’s 30th anniversary, but due to the Coronavirus it has been postponed until 2021. To honor this favorite event, we’d like to share a little bit about the festival so you’ll be ready to attend next year!

The Caladium Festival not only shows tourists what the city of Lake Placid is like, but reminds the current residents of their traditions. Caladium has grown to be much more than a decorative plant to the community – it’s their symbol of growth and diversity. The festival highlights the community's creative heritage and talents through various activities such as the Car & Bike Show, Dr. Tom McDonald 5K Race and the Floral Arrangement Competition.

For over 20 years, Lake Placid’s largest auto show has taken place at the Caladium Festival. Locals and tourists alike come together to show off their prized hot rods and classic vehicles. If you’ve ever dreamed of seeing a 1964 stock Mustang in the wild, this is your place! The cars and bikes are on full display, catching the eye of everyone who walks by. Friendly competition is high at this event – there is an average of 170 cars judged by their antique status and delicacy.

The fan-favorite Car & Bike Show is just the start of Caladium Festival activities. Attendees can also enjoy delicious food, family-friendly entertainment and browse art and craft booths ran by local artisans. People travel from all around to witness the talent emerging from the festival’s competitions and booths. If you’re an art connoisseur, you can find everything from paintings to sculptures to add to your collection.

And just around the corner from the Caladium Festival grounds, you’ll find Paradise Village – a Garber Community on the shores of sparkling Lake Clay. The friendly residents view the Caladium Festival as a beacon of fun and the perfect event to share with visiting family. In addition to its close proximity to fun events and downtown Lake Placid, this 55+ community includes a private marina, lakeside clubhouse, library, swimming pool, exercise facility and more. The residents that make up this community look forward to attending the Caladium Festival each year and often go with groups of their neighbors and friends. It’s their active and lively presence keeping the community young and the event running strong.

Although the Caladium Festival has been postponed this year, caladiums are still available for purchase through growers in the Lake Placid area. To learn more about its history or the next festival, visit https://www.caladiumfestival.org.

If you’re interested in living in a community with rich history and good neighbors, Paradise Village is a great fit for you! To learn more about our available homes click here or call 407-949-8629.