It’s the most wonderful time of the year! This month is jam-packed and there are so many December events to choose from! In addition to our daily events, be sure to check out our numerous guides listed below to help you decide which activities to attend. There is something for everyone!
- Tree Lighting Ceremonies
- Holiday Light Displays
- Breakfast with Santa
- Where to Get Your Photo with Santa
- Columbus Holiday Performances
- FREE Holiday Activities
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Events in December
December 1: Holiday Bazaar and Tree Lighting: 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. in the Short North| Shop, eat, explore pop-ups while enjoying holiday performers all along High Street and end the day at the annual Deck the District Tree Lighting from 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
December 1: Old Worthington Open House and Tree Illumination: 12:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. in Worthington | Bring the family to enjoy the sights and sounds of the holiday season, including horse-drawn carriage rides, live music and a visit from Santa. Local retailers will be offering special promotions. Plan to stay for the tree lighting at 5:30 p.m. when Santa arrives on a fire truck!
December 1: Holidayville 2019: 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. in Clintonville | Neighborhood wide holiday shopping event features carolers, cookies and sales at more than 25 neighborhood shops and restaurants. Free Jolly Trolley rides through the neighborhood make it easy to experience the festivities.
December 1: A Christmas Carol: at The Ohio Theater: 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. | Celebrating the 40th anniversary of this beloved tradition in Columbus. Timeless tale of Ebenezer Scrooge!
December 1: Disney Junior Holiday Party: 3:00 p.m. at The Palace Theater | A dazzling musical wonderland where children and their families can sing and dance along to their favorite Disney Junior songs plus holiday classics with their favorite Disney friends, including Mickey & Minnie Mouse, the Puppy Dog Pals, Vampirina and many more, plus a special visit from Santa Claus!
December 1: Holiday Hop in Hilliard and Tree Lighting: 4:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. in Hilliard | Musical selections will be performed by children, visit from Santa, ice sculpting demonstrations, cookie decorating, balloon artist, reindeer, wagon rides and hot chocolate.
December 2: Marysville Christmas Walk and Tree Lighting: 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. | This historic event is held the Monday after Thanksgiving each year. Bring the family for a night of magic!
December 2: Christmas Open House at John and Annie Glenn in New Concord: 5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. | Step into the living room of John Glenn’s boyhood home and experience Christmas in 1962, the year he orbited Earth. You’re invited to come and see what Christmas was like for a typical American family in 1962. John Glenn’s Lionel train will be running around the tree for all to enjoy and museum volunteers will be serving hot chocolate and cookies on the porch- FREE.
December 3: Kid X Santa Stories with Disney: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. | Enjoy your favorite holiday stories with the Disney team! The story time will take place at The Disney Store located on the Upper Level by JCPenney.
December 3: Holiday Tree Lighting and Festivities in Grandview: 3:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. | Enjoy carol singing sung by the Grandview Heights High School singers and refreshments and annual tree lighting. The iceless ice rink opens at 3:00 p.m.
December 3: Hanby Christmas Open House in Westerville- 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. | The smell of hot cider, the sound of Christmas music, the twinkle of light–all add up to holiday memories. Visit the decorated home of the composer who gave us “Up on the Housetop.” Continuous music in the parlor. Hot cider and cookies will be served. Also on December 7, 2019.
December 4-8: Home for the Holidays: Various showtimes at the Southern Theatre | The CJO heats up the yuletide season with the annual Home for the Holidays concerts. This year’s installment is no exception with Australian-born vocalist/bassist Nicki Parrott, and Columbus’ own Z.F. Taylor.
December 4: Illuminated Shopping in Old Worthington: 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. | Enjoy the start to your holiday shopping in Old Worthington!
December 4: Winter Wonderland Christmas Dinner with Cinderella: 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. at Mellow Mushroom in New Albany | Be their guest and enjoy meet and greet and pictures with Belle!
December 5: Dublin Tree Lighting: 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. in Dublin | Residents will enjoy seasonal activities and entertainment including writing letters to Santa and ornament making, roaming holiday stilt walkers, ice sculpting, and character appearances. In addition, don’t miss Santa’s reindeer at the Reindeer Rest Stop at the Coffman Barn or a visit from Santa as he arrives on a horse-drawn sleigh with Mrs. Claus to light the tree at 6:40 p.m. Santa may be on-hand for pictures after the main event.
December 5: Ohio Statehouse Holiday Festival and Tree Lighting: 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. | Visit with Santa and other historical characters and modern dignitaries at the annual holiday Statehouse event. You’ll also find model trains, carolers and refreshments.
December 5-6: Night in Bethlehem: 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. in Westerville | Experience a Night in Bethlehem at Westerville Christian Church and have a hands-on family experience. Pre-Registration is encouraged.
December 5: Polar Express Cocoa and PJ Party: 6:30 p.m. at Drexel Theater | Special showing!
December 5-8: Capital University Christmas Festival: 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 3:30 p.m. on Sunday | December 5 through 8, the Capital University Conservatory of Music will present its annual Christmas Festival, featuring the Chapel Choir, Choral Union, Women’s Chorus, The Chordsmen, Philomel and a variety of instrumentalists. This long-standing holiday tradition enjoyed by the university, its friends from far and wide and the greater Columbus community.
December 6,13,20: Columbus Commons Holiday Friday Nights : 5:00 p.m.- 11:00 p.m. at the Columbus Commons | To sweeten the deal, Fridays in December will be a little extra festive, with free hot chocolate and carousel rides. Plus, you’ll hear the music of the season with musicians roaming around the park.
December 6: Olde Village Holiday Gathering: 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in Old Pickerington | Join in for a tree lighting ceremony and enjoy open shops for gift giving ideas, games for children, carriage rides, luminaries, carolers and an appearance by Santa Claus!
December 6: Westerville Tree Lighting: 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. in Uptown Westerville | This year’s tree lighting is full of new and exciting activities and events including crafts, cookies, games, music and more. A visit with Santa and other photo opportunities will be available. You don’t want to miss it!
December 6: Ohio Statehouse Holiday Festival and Tree Lighting: 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. | Visit with Santa and other historical characters and modern dignitaries at the annual holiday Statehouse event. You’ll also find model trains, carolers and refreshments- FREE.
December 6: Upper Arlington Tree Lighting and Winter Festival: 6:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. | Activities include the lighting of the Holiday tree, holiday music and caroling by the high school choir, live reindeer, carriage rides, bonfire with s’mores, giveaways, and coffee and hot chocolate – FREE.
December 6-8: Holiday Pops with the Columbus Symphony: Various Times at The Ohio Theatre | Holiday magic transforms the historic Ohio Theatre, filling it with beautiful decorations, wonderful music, and seasonal cheer! The Columbus Symphony Orchestra and Chorus present the season’s most-loved holiday songs and carols, and you can sing along! With four concerts offered, there is a time for everyone to join in the fun. Take your picture with Santa after the 3 p,m. concerts!
December 6-8: Holiday Open House: in Delaware | 6th annual Main Street Delaware Holiday Open House features Santa, local shop specials, and much more! Different events all weekend long. Tree Lighting is Friday, shops open Saturday, and Sunday is the parade.
December 7: Jingle Bell Run Columbus: 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. at Genoa Park | Largest holiday themed 5k race series!
December 7: Holiday Market at North Market: 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at The North Market | Join North Market (and Santa Claus) for their Holiday Market! Get into the spirit with vendors selling holiday cheer and sweets, as well as gifts for all loved ones!
December 7: Kids Workshops at Home Depot: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Local Home Depot | Create your own countdown to the holidays, and have a blast with your child while doing it. Kids develop hands-on skills with sanding, nailing and applying stickers. With help from parents and store associates, your child will make a merry memory this holiday season.
December 7: Grove City Christmas Celebration: 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. in Grove City | Shopping, visits with Santa, live entertainment, a parade and so much more.
December 7: Jack Hannah Home For the Holidays: 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. | Jack Hannah and his animal friends take the stage several times this evening! Santa Paws is an animal enrichment activity taking place during the day as well!
December 7: The Magic Nate Show Christmas Special: 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. at Dublin Toy Emporium | Special all ages, comedy show set to all of your favorite Christmas Classics. Tickets are $7.
December 7: Santa Visit at the Grandview Heights Public Library: 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. | Bring your camera and take a picture of your little ones with Santa while they discuss their holiday wishes. Children can also make a holiday craft and visit with Rosie the Comfort Dog from Atonement Lutheran Church. TICKETS ARE REQUIRED for this event. Tickets are free but must be picked up from the Youth Services Desk- FREE.
December 7: Deck the Stalls: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Stockhand Horses for Healing | Face painting, Christmas bulb decorating, photos with Santa ($5 donation and free for military families), pony rides ($3 donation or 2 for $5), refreshments and more.
December 7: Lakeshore Learning Craft 11:00 a.m – 3:00 p.m. at Lakeshore Learning | Kids can make a free festive winter garland and shop around too!
December 7: Lazarus Santa’s Workshop: 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. | Mr. Claus himself will be making a comeback at the very place many Columbus residents affectionately recall making seasonal expeditions to see him. Carousel rides over at the Columbus Commons will all be FREE!
December 7: Discovery District Holiday Trolley Hop: 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. | Ride the complimentary trolley through the popular Discovery District as it stops for shopping, crafts, tours and activities.
December 7: Downtown Lancaster Winterfest: 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. | Free carriage rides, photos with Santa at the Santa House, visit with the businesses, holiday music, and much more! The downtown tree lighting is at 5:00 p.m.
December 7: Holly Days: 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. in Dublin | Take in the beautiful sights and jolly sounds of the holidays at Historic Dublin’s Holly Days. Celebrate the holiday season with carolers strolling down the street to delicious holiday treats from local businesses and take pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Bring the whole family and enjoy the spirit of the holidays in Dublin!
December 7: Granville Candlelight Walking Tour: 1:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. in the Village of Granville | The day will feature over 70 activities, events, and performances to enjoy.
December 7: Holidays in Powell: 2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. in Powell | Enjoy FREE children’s activities and crafts, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus and more! Tree Lighting is at 6:00 p.m.
December 7: A Winter Evening on the Farm: 3:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. at Gallant Farm | Join them for old-fashioned winter fun at Gallant Farm. Participate in seasonal activities that farm families enjoyed in years past. Enjoy live music while you warm up by an open fire, sipping hot beverages and sampling homemade cookies. Drop in early and stay throughout the evening. Free!
December 7: Main Street Christmas Cookie Walk and Lighted Parade: 3:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. in Downtown Pataskala | Guests will be asked to make a minimum $10 donation per family, then will do a walking tour of more than 50 local businesses collecting a cookie from each stop. There are tons of free activities, and entertainment experiences along the way! Parade at 6:00 p.m.
December 7: Reynoldsburg Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony and Parde: 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Sing carols, drink hot chocolate and watch the tree lighting ceremony at the Reynoldsburg City Hall – FREE.
December 7: Christmas on the Square in Sunbury: 4:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. | Watch a lighted parade at 5:30, participate in festivities such as craft making, visit with Mr. and Mrs. Claus and much more!
December 7: Holiday Bubbles: 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. at The Meza Wine Shop | Poppin’ bubbly just in time for the Holidays!
December 7: Christmas Under the Clock: 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. in Plain City | Tree Lighting Ceremony with entertainment at 5:00 p.m. After the tree lighting, activities include craft vendors, wagon rides to photos with Santa, live music, ice sculpting, drawings and prizes.
December 7: Santa Arrives at the Township: 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. | See Dublin’s first fire truck, a 1937 REO Speedwagon, take a picture with Santa, enjoy a treat and make a craft. 6200 Eiterman Road, Dublin OH. -FREE (but monetary donations are being accepted as well as new, unwrapped toys to benefit the Firefighters for Kids Toy Drive)
December 7-8: The New Albany Nutcracker: Various showtimes at the McCoy Center in New Albany | Get your tickets today! Also showing December 13-15.
December 8: Run Santa Run 5k: 9:00 a.m. at Easton Town Center | Participants are encouraged to dress festively!
December 8: Kids Christmas at the Market: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Lynd’s Fruit Farm | Christmas at the Market invites your child to meet Santa and visit the workshop for a small take-home craft. Smokin’ Out BBQ will be out on the porch selling food. As usual, they will have a variety of items for sale in the Christmas shop as well as a selection of fresh cider, apples, jams & jellies, Amish baked goods & more!
December 8: Santa and Grinch Pictures: 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. at HTH Farm Market | Bring kids, pets, friends and family to get pictures with Santa or the Grinch. Pictures benefit Hope Thru Housing!
December 8: Rudolph Run 5k: 2:00 p.m. in Westerville | Family friendly way to be active together as you run in Uptown Westerville! Kids are encouraged.
December 8: Family Fun with the Columbus Zoo: 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Franklin Park Conservatory | Different animals to visit each month!
December 8: Westerville’s Lions Club Children’s Christmas Parade– The Westerville Lions Club is proud to bring this long-standing tradition to the community! The Westerville Children’s Christmas parade will step off from State St. and Electric Ave. once the last walkers have made the half-way turn in the Rudolph Run/Walk 5K (approximately 2:20 p.m.).
December 8: Santa in the Caboose: 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. in Hilliard | Enter the red caboose to interact and take photos with Santa in his suit from the 1800s. The Historical Village will also be open with live music, art projects, refreshments and more.
December 8: German Village Lights: 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. | Visit the historic streets of German Village to discover a world of lights and holiday magic. Village Lights, the holiday-kickoff experience in German Village. Follow the luminaries from shop to shop as you begin checking off your holiday gift list!
December 8: Clintonville Tree Lighting: 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. | Hot chocolate, music by Whetstone High School singers and brass players, kid’s crafts like cookie icing, ornament making and coloring pictures. Visit with Santa and Ella the Elf and a souvenir sparkly snowflake. Tree Lighting at 7:15 p.m.
December 10: Family Night at The Hofbrahaus: 6:00 p.m. | Bring the little ones for entertainment including face painting, balloon animals, stilt walkers and more. Kids eat free! Special visit from Santa too!
December 12-13: Evening at the North Pole: 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. at The Westerville Community Center | Santa’s elves will serve a light meal with a special dessert and beverages. Santa will share great stories from the North Pole! Holiday crafts and a sing-a-long will get everyone in the holiday spirit.
December 13-28: The Nutcracker: Various showtimes at The Ohio Theatre | Get your tickets today for this holiday tradition!
December 13: Holiday Family Frolic: 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at The Worthington Community Center | Bring your family to the Community Center for a family dance party, crafts, games, and a visit from Santa!
December 13-15: The New Albany Nutcracker: Various showtimes at the McCoy Center in New Albany | Get your tickets today! Also showing December 13-15.
December 13-14: Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: 7:00 p.m. on Friday and 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. on Saturday at The Palace Theater | Get your tickets today!
December 14: Breakfast with Santa at The Worthington Pool: Three different time slots starting 8:00 a.m. Be sure to register!
December 14-15: Polar Express Weekends at COSI: Showtimes vary at COSI | Theater doors open 30 minutes before showtime. $8 for members of COSI.
December 14: Ohio Made Market Last Chance Holiday Shoppe: 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Brew Dog in Canal Winchester | Last chance event featuring 10 handmade Ohio vendors!
December 14: Free Crafts for Kids: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Lakeshore Learning | Kids can make a free Party Into the Holidays Party Cracker at Lakeshore Learning!
December 14-15 and December 21-22: Letters to Santa at The Ohio Railway Museum: 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. | See website for event updates!
December 14: Merry on Main: Skating Rink Grand Opening: 2:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. at Partners Park in Marysville | Grand opening of the iceless skating rink. The skating rink will be open until 8:00 p.m. for kids and until 10:00 p.m. for adults that day. The rink will be open until January 5, 2020.
December 14: Christmas in Ash Cave: 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. | Bundle up and head to Ash Cave in Hocking Hills for an outdoor adventure!
December 15: Holiday Boss Babe Show: 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at Gravity | Come do your holiday shopping with 100 amazing local vendors!
December 15: A Magical Cirque Christmas: 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. at The Palace Theater | Experience the magic of Christmas with dazzling performers and breathtaking cirque artists from all corners of the world, accompanied by your favorite holiday music performed live.
December 16: Double Dare Live: 7:30 p.m. at The Palace Theater | Slime soaking, pie plastering, and booger busting hosted by the legend Marc Summers.
December 17: Champagne and French Fries Tasting: 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. at The Market Italian Village | French fries and champagne are a wonderful pairing! The pairing will feature 5 different sparkling wines as well.
December 18: Free Storytime with Kindermusik: 10:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. at Dublin Toy Emporium | Join them for a not-so traditional storytime. Filled with stories, music, movement and instrument exploration.
December 19: PataskaLights: 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. at Foundation Park | The first-ever drive-thru Christmas experience is sure to be a memory-maker for all! Foundation Park will be lit up from front to back with light displays created by local Griswold’s (families and businesses) and YOU will get to vote on your FAVORITE one! After your magical drive-thru tour, you’ll make a pit stop for some hot cocoa and cookies, place your vote, and enjoy some Christmas fun!
December 20: KIdX Cookies and Claus: 4:30 p.m. at Polaris Fashion Place | Decorate your own Cheryl’s cookie with frosting and holiday sprinkles.
December 20: 6th Annual Ice Sculpture Tour: Beginning at 5:00 p.m. on Friday night and continuing until they melt 🙂 Illuminated ice sculptures are set up on display outside of Uptown Westerville Merchants.
December 21: Brunch with Santa: 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Skate Zone | Come and enjoy a Rollerskating Brunch Buffet with Santa, Rudolph, & Frosty! $12.00 Admission Includes; Roller Skate Rental, Breakfast Items, Cheese Pizza, Pastries, & Fruit
December 21: Free Crafts for Kids: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Lakeshore Learning | Kids can make a free thumbprint keepsake holiday ornament!
December 21: Jingle Mingle Event: 11:00 a.m. at The Shops on Lane Avenue | Photos with Santa, giant snow globe, hot chocolate bar, cookies and carolers! All festivities to take place in the courtyard.
December 21-22: Cookies with Santa at The Franklin Park Conservatory: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. | Visit Santa and two of his reindeer! Decorate a sugar cookie for a sweet treat. $2 per cookie (Advance registration required.)
December 22: Hip Hop Nutcracker: 8:00 p.m. at The Palace Theatre | A holiday mashup for the entire family to enjoy!
Many of the light displays stay up past Christmas. Check out the list: Holiday Light Displays
Need other ideas on how to keep the kids entertained over break. Here are lots of suggestions: 75+ Free Winter Break Activities
December 26: Trans- Siberian Orchestra: 8:00 p.m. at Nationwide Arena| A Holiday classic!
December 27: Winter Carnival at Skate Zone 71: 12:00 p.m. – 3;00 p.m. | Your Admission includes; Bounce House Fun, Face painting, Balloon Twisters and MORE!
December 27: Celebrate with the Critters: 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. at Ohio Wildlife Center | Meet animals, make a bird feeder and make and take crafts! $5 a person.
December 28: Night at the Nature Center: 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. at Battelle Darby Nature Center | See what animals awaken after dark in the 53-foot living stream. Meet at the Nature Center 1415 Darby Creek Dr.
December 28: Free Craft at Lakeshore Learning: 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. | Come make a 2020 party hat and popper!
December 28: Noonday Ball: 11:30 a.m. -1 2:30 p.m. at Bexley Library | There will be activities and a countdown to noon (4 days early.) Dressing up is encouraged.
December 28: Chanukah Celebration: 7:30 p.m. at Easton | A special Menorah Celebration awaits! Join Easton and Chabad of Columbus from 7:30-9 PM for a fun holiday celebration that will include sufganiot, dreidels, music, dancing and refreshments!
December 28: OSU vs. Clemson: Many will be watching the game at home, but if you are looking for an outing, here’s an idea. From 8:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. Ten Pin Alley is offering some “Game Day” specials.
December 29: Harlem Globetrotters: 1:00 p.m. at The Schottenstein Center | Get your tickets today!
December 31: Noon Year’s Eve!: 10:30 a.m.- 12:30 p.m. at Goldfish Swim School | Join Columbus Moms Blog and our event sponsor Goldfish Swim School for a family-friendly New Year event. You can expect lots of swim time (get those winter wiggles out!), a special appearance by Ariel, crafts, tasty treats and drinks, and a countdown to noon complete with ball and balloon drop.
December 31: NYE Countdown Party at Skate Zone 71: 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. | Includes Admission, Skate Rental,Unlimited Cheese Pizza & DRINK, Noise Makers and an Early MOCK Countdown to 2020!