sKIDaddlersGet ready to deck the halls and Fa-La-La all around Minnesota at one of these magical festive events of 2016

**Don’t miss our Minnesota Christmas Light Displays page to feel the spirit of the season from the warmth of your car

LONG-RUNNING EVENTS

Now-April Winter Lights at the Arboretum, Chanhassen MN
Features the six large-scale installations plus a series of immersive, sensory audio-visual animations. Five installations are outdoors, one is in the Oswald Visitor Center and the animations are in the MacMillan Auditorium.

11/5 – 2/25 Night Trains at the Twin City Model Railroad Museum, St. Paul MN
Running every Saturday evening from 6-9pm through 2/27/16.Night Trains Season comes to museum layouts in a magical way, the lights are turned down, the buildings and street lights glow warmly, setting the scene for specially lighted models of vintage passenger trains.Santa Comes to Night Trains Dec 12 & 19.

11/18-12/28  Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: the Musical, Hopkins MN (Stages Theatre Co)
Come celebrate the spirit of the holidays with this timeless tale of misfits, elves, an abominable snow monster and a whole lot of Holly Jolly good fun.

11/18-12/31 Hometown for the Holidays, Stillwater MN
Experience the holidays like you remember. Historic Main Street Stillwater is alive with Christmas decorations, lights, and traditional events for a month-long celebration. Find joy in shopping and dining during the holiday season with many free family friendly events in November and December

11/19-12/23 Santa’s North Pole Experience, Eden Prairie MN
Santa Claus visits, real reindeer, Elf on a Shelf, snow globes, treats, handmade gifts, toys, face painting, picture frames, and toy donation drop site at the Eden Prairie Historical Society’s Cummins-Phipps-Grill House.

11/19-12/24 Macy’s Santaland*, Minneapolis MN
The magical animated display, “A Day in the Life of an Elf” and then visit with Santa!

11/19-12/26  Bentleyville Tour of Lights, Duluth MN
America’s largest free, walk through light display.

11/19 – 12/24 Krueger’s Tree Farm, Lake Elmo MN
Cut-your-own tree, wagon rides, visit Santa, nature walk and warm apple cider.

11/19-12/24 Jan’s Christmas Tree Farm, Clear Lake MN
Visit with Santa, hay rides, campfire, and cut-your-own tree. Santa arrives by helicopter at special event dates!!

11/21-12/20 Bachman’s Annual Holiday Play: “Santa’s Magical Music”, Minneapolis MN
This annual all-new holiday play has been a Bachman’s tradition for 30 years. It’s free to attend and great fun for families. Saturdays & Sundays only. Guests are encouraged to participate in a sing-a-long of holiday carols at the end, and stay to take pictures with Santa and Albert. Play lasts approximately 20 minutes.

11/21-12/23  Cupkie Christmas Village, Richville MN
Cut-your-own Christmas Tree farm. Enjoy the bonfire, concessions, Santa visits, pony rides, live reindeer, straw pyramid to climb on, train rides and a gift shop!

11/22-1/6 Gingerbread Wonderland, Minneapolis MN
Enjoy holiday treats at Also Ingebretsen’s and surround yourself in all things gingerbread.

11/22-1/1  Holiday Lights in the Park, St Paul MN (Phalen Park)
More than 60 holiday-themed light displays located on a driving path.

11/25-12/23 Holidazzle Village, Minneapolis MN (Thur-Suns)
A free holiday festival in Loring Park. Meet Santa, listen to live music, dance, skate and more. Firework displays on several Friday & Saturday nights

11/25-12/11 Pinestead Tree Farm, Isanti MN
Cut-your-own tree, wagon rides, visit Santa, see the model train, bonfire, and gift shop. Lots of photo-ops, too!

11/25 A Victorian Christmas at the Ramsey House, St Paul MN
Experience the sights, sounds and tastes of a Victorian Christmas in 1875. During the guided tour, guests can taste homemade cookies fresh from the wood burning stove, listen to popular holiday music of the era played on the family’s Steinway piano, and view original family ornaments and Christmas gifts.

11/27-12/13  B& J Evergreen,  Clear Lake MN
A cut-your-own Christmas Tree farm. Offering wagon & sled dog rides, Santa visits, petting zoo and more.

11/27-12/13  Rum River Tree Farm, Oak Grove MN
Cut-Your-Own Christmas Tree Farm. Enjoy visits with Santa, Hayrides, petting zoo and pony rides, candy canes and coloring books!

11/27-12/13  Hampton Hills Tree Farm, Randolph MN
Cut-Your-Own Christmas Tree Farm. Enjoy visits with Santa, Hayrides, petting zoo and pony rides, candy canes and coloring books!

11/28-12/1 Fire Departments Santa Parade, Spring Lake Park, Blaine, Mounds View MN
The 2015 Santa Parade has arrived!  Monday-Thursday we will be out on a different parade route with over 20 fire trucks!  Non-perishable food items will be collected for local donations.  Firefighters will be sending a smile and a candy cane to anyone joining us on the parade routes.

12/3-12/11  Hill House Holidays, St Paul MN
The bustle and excitement of a Gilded Age Christmas is brought to life as the servants of the James J. Hill House prepare for the holidays.

12/3, 12/8-10 U of M Light Show, Minneapolis MN
Join the University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering (CSE) during the first two weekends in December for a dazzling light show designed by students. The high-tech light show is bigger and better this year featuring more than 100,000 LED lights and laser projection set to music, some of which is written and recorded by University of Minnesota students.

ONE-DAY EVENTS

NOVEMBER 2016

11/18 Christmas City of the North Parade, Duluth MN
A holiday tradition since 1958. Parade starts at 6pm.

11/19  Holidaze Parade, Willmar MN
S’mores! Firepits! Haybales! Chili! Luminaries! Hot Chocolate! Coffee! Petting Zoo! Santa, Reindeer and Sleigh Rides! Blinkie Giveaways for Kids at North Pole Information Booth! Music!

11/23 Winter Lighting Festival, Burnsville MN
Attend the ceremony and stroll through the lights. There’ll be a special appearance by Mr. and Mrs. Claus as well as entertainment by the Burnsville High School Freestyle Singers and the Sioux Trail Elementary Choir.

11/22-23 Hip Hop Nutcracker, St Paul MN
A holiday mash-up for the whole family, The Hip Hop Nutcracker re-imagines Tchaikovsky’s classic score through explosive hip hop choreography.

11/24              THANKSGIVING

11/24 Opening Day at the Depot Rink, Minneapolis MN
The Depot Rink is an historic downtown Minneapolis train shed that now houses a modern-day, indoor skating rink with floor-to-ceiling glass walls providing a great view of the city skyline.

11/25 Holidazzle Fireworks, Minneapolis MN
Enjoy fireworks as part of the opening ceremony of the Holidazzle

11/25  Hudson Light up the Night Hudson, WI
Santa arrives with Elves in town, music in the air, candy canes and much more. With a wave of his hand, Santa turns the dark of night into the festive glow of the holiday lights. A sparkling evening in Downtown Hudson for kids of all ages. Downtown Hudson, 7pm.

11/25 Forest Lake Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony, Forest Lake MN
Join us for The City’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony!  Movies, Ice Sculpting Santa Claus, Performances and more.

11/25-27 Christkindlsmarkt, Excelsior MN
A celebration of the holiday season for the whole family. An open air market, puppet shows, face painting and more.

11/25 Light Up the Lake, Wayzata MN
Join the fun for Community Tree Lighting and festive activities, such as Santa’s reindeer, hot cocoa, s’mores, and candy cane hunt.

11/25-27 Lighting Festival, Taylors Falls
Craft show, bonfire, food, parade and lighting ceremony.

11/25 Christmas at the Fort, Alexandria MN (Runestone Museum)
Enjoy carolers, children’s choirs, Santa and Mrs. Claus, hot cidar and music. At dusk Santa and Mrs. Claus flip the switch to light up the entire historic downtown district with lights.

11/25  Old Fashioned Christmas Stroll, Redwing MN
Pancake breakfast, caroling, lighted parade, cookie decorating, live penguins, Santa, horse drawn wagon rides and reindeer in Red Wing!

11/25 Lighted Horse Parade*, Pelican Rapids MN
Every year on the day after Thanksgiving the Pelican Rapids Minnesota Chamber of Commerce sponsors a lighted horse parade to get the holiday season off to a fun start.

11/25  Here Comes Santa Claus, Rochester MN
The magical evening kicks-off with a thrilling rooftop rescue by the Rochester Fire Department.  Santa will make his dramatic rooftop landing and grand downtown debut.

11/25 Parade of Lights, New Ulm MN
60+ units, brightly lit with thousands of colored lights, travel along Minnesota Street from 4th South to 4th North.  The historic downtown is lined with real Christmas trees, and real garland hangs from above.

 

11/26 Hastings Holiday Hoopla, Hastings MN
Vendor fair, pictures with Santa, Reindeer rides, gourmet smores, ice carving and more!

11/26 Santa and Reindeer at Valley Creek Mall, Woodbury MN
Santa and Live reindeer from 10a-3p

11/26  Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony*, Edina MN
50th & France’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony. Visit with Santa, enjoy holiday songs performed by strolling carolers and sip on complimentary coffee or cider provided by Caribou Coffee!

11/26 Christmas Festival, Wadena MN
Feature crafters, music, food, and even a special visit from Santa & Mrs. There are over 80 booths with products that will delight young to old.

11/26 Midway Holiday Pop-Up Shop, St. Paul MN
You’ll find dozens of local businesses, crafters, artisans and artists—all from in and around the Midway area—selling a wide range of local goods and gifts for everyone on your shopping list. Bring the kids to share their wishes, and come enjoy live music and carols, ornament decorating, holiday stories, holiday baked goods and more—all while you support our local businesses, and fill your holiday list with gifts from close to home.

11/26 Deck the Falls, Cannon Falls MN
This holiday celebration will warm your heart and help you kick off the holiday season plus support local businesses by taking part in “Small Business Saturday”.  Events include store open houses, Deck the Falls parade, holiday music, bake sales, and more.

11/26  Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, Minneapolis, MN
For one day only, the ballet company will be in Twin Cities to perform one of the greatest holiday dance theatricals. The sets are spectacular and the costumes stunning. But the grace and skill of the dancers in this tale of a young girl, her jealous brother, and a fantasy nutcracker prince create a breath-taking performance.

11/26  Lighting Up Longville, Longville MN
“Lighting Up Longville” Offical Christmas Tree Lighting downtown Longville. Horse-drawn wagon rides, hotdogs, hot chocolate, and cookies — and it’s all FREE! Christmas carols and a bonfire!

11/27  International Holiday Festival, Minneapolis MN
At the Ukrainian Center. Folk dancing, music, lunch, bake sale and craft sale.

11/28  Grand Parade of Lights, Detroit Lakes MN
Parade in Downtown Detroit Lakes!

 

DECEMBER 2016

12/1  Lighted Holiday Parade, Owatonna MN
Annual lighted parade at 6pm

12/1-2 North Pole Express Holiday Train, St Paul MN (Union Train)
Guests will enjoy the experience of a real steam train, Santa and his elves, and holiday fun for all.

12/1-11 European Christmas Market at Union Depot, St Paul MN
The market is based on the traditional, charming, and festive open air Christkindlmarkts that spring up in Germany, Austria and other countries during the Advent season.

12/2 Decembrrr Dazzle, Prior Lake MN
Santa and his reindeer will be on hand for photos with children in Lakefront Park and many other events are planned.

12/2 Union Depot Tree Lighting, St Paul MN (Union Depot)
The Holiday Tree Lighting celebration will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Waiting Room with entertainment and holiday activities. At ~ 7:00 p.m. guests will move outside for the tree lighting celebration followed by a short fireworks display.

12/2 Elf  movie at Union Depot, St Paul MN (Union Depot)
Holiday favorites will be shown on a large screen in the Waiting Room.  The movie showings are free and open to the public. Concessions will be available for purchase.

12/2 Osseo Minidazzle, Osseo MN
Fire truck parade, Bonfire, Santa, Carolers. 6pm-8pm

12/2-3  Afton Holiday Village, Afton MN
The village will “light up” with holiday lights and torches.  Horse & Wagon rides, Com     munity Christmas Tree Lighting, Strolling Carolers, Holiday Gift Boutiques, free wine tasting, live music, food/drink specials, bonfires with complimentary warm beverages and more.  Guests are also asked to please bring donations of warm hats and mittens and nonperishable food shelf items.

12/3 Reindeer Day in Linden Hills, Minneapolis MN
Reindeer Day brings small-town holiday traditions to Linden Hills. Shoppers can warm up and roast marshmallows over fire pits in the parking lot behind Heartfelt and Zumbro Café. Santa will be mingling with young shoppers, and the 43rd and Upton merchants will hold special in-store events.

12/3 Tree Lighting Ceremony, Chanhassen MN
Come and enjoy the lighting of the holiday tree, refreshments, live reindeer, gingerbread house displays and, of course, a special visit from Santa Claus!

12/3 Sleighbells and Sparkle Parade, Maple Grove MN
Parade at 5pm

12/3 Santa and the Elf Workshop, Eden Prairie MN
The centerpiece of The Garden is our community green space and we love hosting events to bring our neighbors, family and friends together! Gingerbread houses, ornaments and more! Santa visits from 2-4!

12/3-4, 10-11 Christmas in the Village, Farmington MN (Dakota County Heritage Village)
Visit our village with buildings decorated and lit up inside and out. Trolley rides. Santa will be in the depot and Mrs. Santa will be in the village library to help children write letters to Santa, Choirs and more.

12/3 Grand Meander, St Paul MN
Breakfast with Santa, Santa’s reindeer, soup tastings, art shows, caroling and trolley rides.

12/3 Christmas Tree Lighting, Anoka MN
We’ll have bonfires, Santa will meet FREE with children, free horse drawn carriage rides are available and of course we’ll light up the tree. It’s a great event for the whole family!

12/3 Pioneer Christmas, Forest Lake MN
Enjoy pioneer crafts, visit with Santa, carolers, horse-drawn sleigh rides, food, and much more.

12/3 Holiday on Main Street, Lakeville MN
Features visits with Santa Claus, storytelling with Mrs. Claus, trolley rides, live reindeer, singing, face painting, ECFE book fair, musical performances, and more!  Bring a non-perishable food item for donation at The Open Door Food Shelf.

12/3 Holiday Open Haus, Minneapolis MN
The GAI’s mansion will be decorated for the season, with vendors featuring crafts and goods from German and local artisans, model trains, and a visit from St. Nikolaus on Sunday.

12/3 Hometown Holiday, Chaska MN
Special discounts at over 25 downtown merchants and fun family activities

12/4 Holidazzle Movie Night, Minneapolis MN
Showing a Christmas Story in the Winter Wonderland

12/4 Sensitive Santa at Northtown Mall, Blaine MN
A special time for children with autism and their families to visit Santa. 8a-10a

12/4 and 12/11 Santa at Choo Choo Bobs*, St. Paul MN
Free visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Bring your camera and non-perishable food donation.

12/4 Breakfast with Santa at Wildfire*, Eden Prairie MN
Get the kids in the holiday spirit and enjoy a holiday brunch buffet with the family, as the children get to visit with Santa and receive a gift bag. The event begins at 10:30 a.m. and is priced at $14.95 for children 12 and under, and $19.95 for adults.

12/5 Twinkle Parade, Stillwater MN
Free coffee, cocoa, cookies, & popcorn. Free Twinkle Lights for children 12 and under while supplies last. Feel free to dress up in your own lights too! Let’s light up the parade route. Entertainment, tree lighting, and a short kid-friendly fireworks display to follow.

12/8 Canadian Pacific Holiday Train, Wabasha, Hastings and Winona MN
Every year, our Holiday Trains travel through dozens of communities, raising food and cash donations for North American food banks.

12/8  Winter Walk, Northfield MN
Experience downtown Northfield by candlelight. Stroll through unique shops, dine at fine restaurants and enjoy caroling, horse and reindeer-drawn wagon rides, luminarias, decorated storefronts and more

12/9 North Pole Express Holiday Train, St Paul MN (Union Train)
Guests will enjoy the experience of a real steam train, Santa and his elves, and holiday fun for all.

12/9 Canadian Pacific Holiday Train, St Paul and Cottage Grove MN
Every year, our Holiday Trains travel through dozens of communities, raising food and cash donations for North American food banks.

12/10 Canadian Pacific Holiday Train, New Hope, Golden Valley, St Louis Park, NE Mpls MN
Every year, our Holiday Trains travel through dozens of communities, raising food and cash donations for North American food banks.

12/10 Winter Party in the Park, Inver Grove Heights MN
Move the fun outdoors in the afternoon with a candy cane hunt, reindeer rides, fire dancers, an ice skating exhibition, ice and snow games, snowshoeing, cross country skiing and a toy raffle.

12/10  Santas Workshop Maplewood Community Center*, Maplewood MN
We’ll have a visit from Santa, games, musics, movies, arts and crafts, holiday stories and much more!  Bring an unwrapped girft for Toys for Tots and you’ll receive a special prize.  Ages 3 and up. Call to register, space is limited.

12/10 Old Fashion Christmas, Plymouth MN
Participants can visit with Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus and the elves; meet reindeer; snack on cookies; roast s’mores; take a horse-drawn sleigh ride; and enjoy choir songs and holiday tales. The event will also include a PRISM toy drive, which accepts new, unwrapped toys for children from birth to age 18.

12/10 Skate with Santa, Inver Grove Heights MN
Santa visits the Community Center on skates where families can enjoy the holidays on ice!  Hot beverages and snack provided! 3p-4:30p

12/10-11 Nature Hike with Santa,  Dayton MN (Eastman Nature Center)
Help Santa look for magic reindeer food and decorate a letter to him. Create both holiday and edible squirrel ornaments. Get one-on-one time with Santa.

12/11 Canadian Pacific Holiday Train, Loretto, Buffalo, Annandale, Eden Valley
Every year, our Holiday Trains travel through dozens of communities, raising food and cash donations for North American food banks.

12/11 Holidazzle Movie Night, Minneapolis MN
Happy Feet in the Winter Wonderland

12/11 Very Merry Santa Day at Jerry’s Foods*, Woodbury MN
We are partnering with the Woodbury Rotary club to bring Santa to Jerry’s for the 1st Annual Very Merry Santa Day at Jerry’s Foods. Santa will be taking FREE photos. Kids can collect festive cookies at the Holiday Cookie Walk and participate in other FREE activities! 11a-2p

12/11 Santa’s Workshop, St Paul MN (Landmark Center)
Sundays at Landmark is a series of cultural and art events that are designed to entertain, enrich and educate an audience. All programs begin at 1 pm unless otherwise noted and are free and open to the public!

12/12 Breakfast with Santa at Tria Restaurant, North Oaks MN
Bring the family to Tria Restaurant from 10am-2pm for Brunch with Santa, a Carriage Ride with Horses and the Morgan’s breakfast! Call to make reservations.

12/16 Tomte Solstice Magic, Minnetrista MN (Gale Woods Farm)
Experience the magical Scandinavian Tomte tradition. Listen to a story, make a craft and search for the Tomte hiding in the barn with small gifts. Visit the animals and sample hot porridge. Children 17 years and younger must be accompanied by a registered adult. Drop in anytime.

12/16 Folkways by Candlelit, Shakopee MN (The Landing)
Take a candlelit stroll through the 1800s Eagle Creek Village. Greet costumed residents as they share holiday traditions in their homes, watch the Christmas and enjoy music by pianist Renae Williams.

12/17 Candy Cane Hunt, St Anthony MN (Silverwood Park)
Santa’s elves have hidden candy canes outside. Find three and get a prize! Canes with golden ribbons get larger prizes. Enjoy a horse-drawn wagon ride, warm treats, arts, winter games, and photos with Santa.

12/17 Warden’s House Holiday Event, Stillwater MN
Have a truly unique holiday shopping experience while meeting local authors, sipping coffee generously donated by Starbucks, and enjoying live holiday songs provided by Mary Taylor Allen’s local student musicians at our annual book sale. Not to mention that some of our most popular titles will be up to 50% off their normal price!

12/18 Breakfast with Santa* Chanhassen MN (Arboretum)
Bring the kids for a fun visit with the Jolly Old Elf himself! Visits are free with gate admission.

12/18 Holidazzle Movie Night, Minneapolis MN
Frozen in the Winter Wonderland

12/23      Holidazzle fireworks, Minneapolis MN
Fireworks at 630p

** Asterisks = Not confirmed for 2016

Related Searches: Festival Calendar, Christmas Light Display, Outdoor Winter Fun in Minnesota