With Thanksgiving in the books and Christmas fast-approaching, it’s important to seal up those last-minute holiday plans as soon as possible. Whether you’re dreaming of a holiday in Florida or a winter wonderland in the Rocky Mountains, popular destinations around the country are getting their communities ready and vying for a tourist influx and economic boost.
With so much to keep track of in so many different places, we’re here to help you sift through those holiday ideas and find events and festivities near you that will fulfill your ideal Christmas season. From Maryland to Denver, with a stop-off at Dollywood, let’s take a look at some upcoming holiday events in places across the U.S.
B&O Railroad Museum
East Coasters can experience pure holiday joy at the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. With events scheduled from now through Christmas, the museum invites you to revel in some holiday, train-themed magic.
Fittingly kicking off the season will be the museum’s Holiday Festival of Trains. With train displays and activities for “kids from 1 to 92,” the festival represents the museum’s passion for the holiday season. On December 5, bring your furry friends to meet Santa Paws. Photos with your dog and Santa are just $12, $6 for additional photos, and $20 for a digital photo link.
The B&O Railroad Museum also has events just for kids. On December 7, bring them along for Holiday Toddler Time, featuring arts, crafts, photos with Santa, and a chance to sing Christmas carols. Throughout the season, one of the museum’s premier holiday attractions is The Polar Express Train Ride. From now until December 19, experience the magic of this iconic Christmas tale with hot cocoa, cookies, entertainment, a meet-and-greet with Santa, and so much more.
And finally on December 22, the B&O Railroad Museum is capping off its holiday celebration with a Night in the North Pole. Running adult visitors $27, children $18, and seniors $22, you can ride the Reindeer Railway, lounge in the Candy Cane Café, and sit by the fire at the S’mores Corner.
Smoky Mountain Christmas
“Celebrate the season with the return of America’s Best Christmas Event for more than a decade!” says Dollywood’s official website. “Gather your family close and explore a winter wonderland adorned with more than 6 million twinkling lights and dozens of towering Christmas trees that add a cheerful shimmer to our award-winning rides and attractions like new Big Bear Mountain.”
As one of the most popular theme parks in the South, it’s no surprise that Dollywood goes all out for Christmas. From “heartwarming holiday shows” to “holiday feasts and sweets,” Dollywood is packed to the brim with activities and events sure to make your Christmas magical. With 1-, 2-, and 3-day ticket options, explore the Dollywood website to decide how long you want to experience the park.
Zoo Lights At The Denver Zoo
For the past 33 years, the Denver Zoo has been one of Colorado’s premier destinations to take in millions of beautiful sparkling Christmas lights.
“Now, with 80 acres boasting more than 3 million sparkling lights (up from 2 million in previous years), Denver Zoo is still the destination for holiday memories,” said the Denver Zoo in a press release. “This year, there’s even more magic than ever, including an adults-only night (November 20), sensory-friendly night (December 31), animated light sculptures, nightly ice-carving exhibitions sponsored by Primrose Schools, and festive seasonal treats.”
Zoo Lights will be available for Denver Zoo members only from November 24–December 1. From December 2–January 7, the lights will be displayed for all visitors.