Dec 3 from 2 - 9 p.m.
Dec 4 from 12 - 5 p.m. (Carnival only)

with canned food or toy donation to Sanderson Ford Operation Santa!

This year’s Surprise Party will pay tribute to one of our original festivals – Founder’s Day!

The annual festival celebrated our incorporation on December 12, 1960. Join us as we honor our history with a carnival, car show and more holiday lights than ever before!

Check out these featured events and more at Surprise Founder’s Day Party!

  • Tree Lighting, 6:25-6:35 p.m.
  • Drone Show, 7:30-7:40 p.m. and 8:50-9 p.m.
  • Santa's Workshop & Photos, 2-9 p.m.
  • Ice Sculpture Demo, 5-7 p.m.
  • Car Show, 2-8 p.m.
  • Carnival, 2-9 p.m. (Dec 3) and 12-5 p.m. (Dec 4)
  • Balloon Rides & Glow, 6-9 p.m.

Times and activities are subject to change.

For more information, call 623.222.2000

To see a complete list of shows and activities, take a look at the Founder’s Day Party Schedule & Activity Map.

Surprise Party 2022 Map

We’d love your feedback! Take the post-event survey.


Saturday, December 3 • 2 - 9 p.m.

Surprise Recreation Campus - 15960 N. Bullard Ave.
(A street party between Paradise & Tierra Buena lanes, outside Surprise Stadium)

Enjoy drone light shows, live & roaming entertainment, great food, photo opportunities with Santa in Santa’s Workshop and the traditional tree lighting ceremony. Be sure to bring your mittens/gloves, jackets and hats for Saturday night's snow play area! During the day, you can explore our Founder’s Day Classic Car Show and Carnival.

Interested in showing off your 1960’s ride in our car show?

All car show entries must be a 1960’s vehicles and will compete in the categories of Top 36, Mayor’s Choice and Best of Show. Preregister for $20 per vehicle by November 28 or register after for $25 per vehicle.

Fill out the Car Show Registration Form or you can register online through Surprise Rec, account required. For more information contact Daniel Luvisi at 623.222.2251 or email.

Sunday, December 4 • Noon - 5 p.m.

Surprise Stadium Parking Lot – 15850 N. Bullard Ave

Come out as we celebrate the City’s history with a Founder’s Day Carnival! This carnival pays tribute to one of Surprise’s original festivals - Founder’s Day! The annual festival celebrated our City’s incorporation on December 12, 1960. Join us as we honor our beginnings and remember this special time in history.

Please note, carnival activities are for a cost.

Sponsored By

Sanderson Ford Sanderson Lincoln Banner National Indoor RV Centers
Surprise Parks & Recraetion logo

City of Surprise, AZ • ©2022

Contact Parks & Recreation: 623-222-2000