- A festive occasion, especially a lavish social event or entertainment. (noun)
- Chiefly British An athletic competition, especially a swimming contest. (noun)
- Marked by lavish or festive celebration: a gala ball after the inaugural ceremony. (adjective)
- Characterized by sumptuous social pleasure: the gala life of the very rich. (adjective)
American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.