Feel the warmth of the season while enjoying the glow of illuminated trees, twinkly lights and burning menorah candles. From faux snow to folklorico, here are a number of ways to get festive this holiday season.
Cowboys Christmas Extravaganza
FREE The Dallas Cowboys will celebrate Christmas at The Star with a 20-minute holiday show featuring the lighting of a 67-foot-tall tree and performances by Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, Rhythm and Blue Dancers and Drumline, mascot Rowdy, Santa Claus and team members.
Home for the Holidays
FREE Downtown McKinney’s annual street festival returns with photos with Santa, a snow hill, a carousel, a trackless train, a petting zoo, live music, costumed characters and more family fun. The city’s 35-foot-tall blue spruce Christmas tree will be lit Nov. 26 at 6:15 p.m.
Home for the Holidays is Nov. 26-27 from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Nov. 28 from noon to 5 p.m. on the downtown square, 111 N. Tennessee St., McKinney. Admission is free; some activities have a fee. mckinneychristmas.com.
FREE Chabad of Dallas and the Intown Chabad mark the first night of Hanukkah with a concert by Israeli American rapper Nissim Black, the lighting of the big pink menorah, crafts, a choir performance and kosher food for sale.
Hanukkah Concert is Nov. 28 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Klyde Warren Park, 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway, Dallas. Free admission; upgrades start at $50 for latkes, doughnuts and glow sticks for four people. Parking is $10 at several nearby lots. theintownchabad.com.
Hanukkah Menorah Lighting
FREE A candle on the Galleria’s large-scale menorah will be lit each night of Hanukkah. On the first night, Nov. 28 at 5 p.m., there will be a story time with the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum, a performance by a children’s choir, and sufganiyah (jelly doughnuts).
Hanukkah Menorah Lighting is Nov. 28-Dec. 6 at 5 p.m. on Level 1 (near Guest Reception) at Galleria Dallas, 13350 Dallas Parkway, Dallas. Free. galleriadallas.com.
Menorah Display at NorthPark Center
FREE For Hanukkah, Chabad of Dallas is displaying a menorah on Level 1 between Burberry and Louis Vuitton that will be lit nightly.
Menorah Display at NorthPark Center is Nov. 28-Dec. 6 at NorthPark Center, 8687 N. Central Expressway, Dallas. Free. northparkcenter.com.
Holiday on the Hill
FREE Activities include trackless train rides, an ice rink, an obstacle course, live entertainment, photos with Santa and the official lighting of the Cedar Hill Christmas tree.
Holiday on the Hill is Dec. 2 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at 600 Cedar St. in historic downtown Cedar Hill. Free. cedarhilltx.com/holiday.
A Garland Christmas at Firewheel
FREE To replace its Christmas on the Square event this year, Garland will host a festival at Firewheel Town Center with the lighting of the Christmas tree, photos with Santa, live reindeer, snow hills, bounce houses, live music, food trucks and more.
A Garland Christmas at Firewheel is Dec. 2 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Firewheel Town Center, 300 Cedar Sage Drive, Garland. Free. christmasonthesquare.com.
FREE The celebration begins with a parade that starts at East Wheatland Road and East Freeman Street and then travels down Main Street to Memorial Park. There will be a tree-lighting ceremony in downtown Duncanville and a festival at Memorial Park with photos with Santa, games, bounce houses, live performances and concessions for sale.
Duncanville Christmas is Dec. 4 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Memorial Park, 101 N. Main St., Duncanville. Free. facebook.com/DuncanvillePARD.
Reliant Lights Your Holidays
FREE Stroll the campus of the AT&T Performing Arts Center to view LED lights illuminating the Winspear Opera House, the Wyly Theatre and the trees in Sammons Park. Look for festive projections on the buildings, Santa Claus, crafts for children, hosts Raúl Solís and Johana Suárez of Univision 23, and performances by Selena tribute band Bidi Bidi Banda and Vinyl Countdown: A Tribute to Arena Rock.
Reliant Lights Your Holidays is Dec. 4 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St., Dallas. Free. attpac.org.
Old Town Holiday Stroll
FREE For a small fee, families can have breakfast with Santa between 8 a.m. and noon. A Motorcycle Toy Run departs from Lewisville City Hall at 11 a.m., where festively dressed bikers take toys for donation to local children before heading out on a holiday ride. The Lewisville Christmas Parade steps off at noon from Main Street and Cowan Avenue, then travels through Old Town Lewisville. Stay after the parade for more Old Town Holiday Stroll activities, including a carnival and crafts; a tree lighting at 5:30 p.m.; a movie screening at 6 p.m.; and hayrides from 6 to 9 p.m.
Old Town Holiday Stroll is Dec. 4 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Wayne Ferguson Plaza, 150 W. Church St., Lewisville. Free. cityoflewisville.com.
Tree Lighting Celebration
FREE Visit Klyde Warren Park for photos with Santa, story time with Mrs. Claus, visits from Santa’s friends Frosty and Rudolph, live holiday music, face painting, crafts, games and the lighting of the Christmas tree.
Tree Lighting Celebration is Dec. 4 from 3 to 6 p.m. at Klyde Warren Park, 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway, Dallas. Free admission; parking is $10 at several nearby lots. klydewarrenpark.org.
Holidays at Heritage
FREE Festivities on Dec. 4 in Irving’s historic district include a parade that steps off at 6 p.m., followed by a tree-lighting ceremony and family festival at the renovated Heritage Park, 217 S. Main St., Irving. Other events at Heritage Park include movies on Dec. 10 and 17, Brunch-mas on Dec. 11 and Carol-oke on Dec. 18.
Holidays at Heritage is Dec. 4 starting at 6 p.m. at West Second Street and Irving Boulevard in Irving’s Heritage District. Free. irvingevents.org.
Merry Main Street
FREE The lighting of Frisco’s city tree will be at 6 p.m., plus there’ll be photos with Santa, performances of holiday music, parent-free shopping for children and other kids’ activities, a gift marketplace and carriage rides. There are two other events on Dec. 4: Breakfast with Santa at 8, 9:30 and 11 a.m. and Frosty 5K/Merry Mile at 8:30 a.m.
Merry Main Street is Dec. 4 from 3:30 to 10 p.m. at Simpson Plaza outside Frisco City Hall, 6101 Frisco Square Blvd., Frisco. Free. friscotexas.gov (search “merry”).
Dickens in Downtown Plano
FREE The city’s Christmas tree will be lit at 7 p.m., plus there will be snow slides, photos with Santa, family-friendly fun, food and shopping.
Dickens in Downtown Plano is Dec. 4 from 5 to 10:30 p.m. at Haggard Park, 901 E. 15th St., Plano. Free. facebook.com/planoarts.
Christmas in the Park
FREE Mesquite’s holiday festival will feature photos with Santa, carnival rides, bounce houses, live music and dance performances, marshmallow-roasting and concessions for sale.
Christmas in the Park is Dec. 4-5 from 2 to 7 p.m. at Westlake Park, 601 Gross Road, Mesquite. Admission is free; some activities have a fee. cityofmesquite.com/christmasinthepark.
Frisco Community Hanukkah Celebration
FREE The Chabad of Frisco hosts its annual giant menorah lighting at Frisco Square. There will be music by the Kosher Klezmer Band, children’s crafts, a bounce house, a trackless train, dreidels, gelt and treats such as doughnuts and latkes.
Frisco Community Hanukkah Celebration is Dec. 5 at 4 p.m. at Simpson Plaza, 6101 Frisco Square Blvd., Frisco. Free. chabadfrisco.org/chanukah.
FREE The DeSoto library’s Christmas festival includes free photos with Santa, live entertainment, storytelling, crafts, snacks and other activities.
Holiday Palooza is Dec. 11 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the DeSoto Public Library, 211 E. Pleasant Run Road, DeSoto. Free. desotolibrary.info.
Holiday at the Farm
FREE Dallas Park and Recreation’s Outdoor Adventures program presents a Christmas trip to Samuell-East Farm, a city park that was once a 600-acre farm. There will be pictures with Santa, live performances, arts and crafts, a gift market and sweets and treats for sale.
Holiday at the Farm is Dec. 11 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Samuell-East Farm, 100 U.S. Highway 80 at Belt Line Road, Mesquite. Free. dallasparks.org/580/outdoor-adventures-special-events.
Christmas at the Ranch
FREE Mesquite’s Florence Ranch Homestead will host a Victorian Christmas party to celebrate both the holidays and turning 150 years old. There will be photos with Father Christmas, a storytime, an ornament-making craft, refreshments such as apple cider and gingerbread, and other traditional holiday activities.
Dec. 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Florence Ranch Homestead, 1424 Barnes Bridge Road, Mesquite. Free admission. facebook.com/HistoricMesquiteInc.
Children can wear their pajamas and sip cocoa while learning how different cultures celebrate the holidays. Log Cabin Village, the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, Ballet Folklorico Fort Worth Inc. and more will participate.
Dec. 11 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, 1600 Gendy St., Fort Worth. $16, $14 for ages 65 and older, $12 for ages 3-11, free for ages 2 and younger. Parking prices vary. fwmuseum.org.
Farmstead Christmas Celebration at Nash Farm
The Grapevine heritage park’s 5.2-acre grounds, which include a farmhouse built in 1869, will be decorated in the style of Christmas in the late 1800s. Enjoy an open house event with music, refreshments, ornament-making, crafts and more.
Dec. 11 from 1 to 4 p.m. at Nash Farm, 626 Ball St., Grapevine. $5. grapevinetexasusa.com/nash-farm/events.
Grinchmas at Grandscape
Women Leading Technology will host a family-friendly day, starting at 2 p.m. with photos with the Grinch, face painting and vendors and ending with screening of The Grinch at Grandscape’s lawn and stage.
Dec. 11 from 2 to 7 p.m. at Grandscape, 5752 Grandscape Blvd., The Colony. $10, $30 for families of four. tinyurl.com/wltgrinchmas.
Candlelight at Dallas Heritage Village
The annual nighttime event will feature historic buildings decorated for the holidays, visits with St. Nicholas, strolling carolers, a holiday marketplace, live music, and food and drinks for sale. Guests can pose for photos with donkeys Willie and Waylon. In addition, the adults-only Cocktails by Candlelight is Dec. 10 from 6 to 9 p.m. There will be music by the Singapore Slingers and barbecue and drinks for $80 per person, $140 per couple.
Candlelight at Dallas Heritage Village is Dec. 11-12 from 3 to 9 p.m. at Dallas Heritage Village at Old City Park, 1515 S. Harwood St., Dallas. $15, $10 for ages 5-12, free for 4 and younger. dallasheritagevillage.org.
The Legacy North Pole
FREE The Shops at Legacy North will have photos with Santa and live reindeer ($10; pre-registration encouraged), a 10-foot-long ice slide for kids and adults ($10 for a limitless slide pass), a play area with real snow, ornament-decorating stations, live music and more.
Dec. 12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Shops at Legacy North, 7401 Lone Star Drive, Plano. Free admission. facebook.com/ShopsAtLegacy/events.
St. Nick will arrive at the Frontiers of Flight Museum in an Airbus helicopter, then be available for photos on a Mars backdrop from 2 to 4 p.m. This aviation- and space-focused Christmas celebration will also include cockpit tours, planetarium shows, visitors such as Star WarsStormtroopers, music, treats and more.
Dec. 12 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Frontiers of Flight Museum, 6911 Lemmon Ave., Dallas. $10 for adults, $8 for seniors 65 and older, $7 for ages 3-17, free for children 2 and under. flightmuseum.com.
FREE The Latino Cultural Center will celebrate Posada, a Christmas tradition in Mexico and other Latin American countries that commemorates Joseph and Mary’s search for safe refuge in Bethlehem before the birth of Jesus. Typically, there is a procession led by musicians. But this year, there will only be a festival on the outdoor plaza with a folklorico telling the Nativity story and a rondalla performance.
Posada Dallas is Dec. 12 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Latino Cultural Center, 2600 Live Oak St., Dallas. Free. lcc.dallasculture.org.
M-Line Trolley Holiday Express
View holiday lights and decorations in Dallas’ Uptown neighborhood and the Dallas Arts District while riding one of M-Line’s vintage trolley cars. The one-hour tours include holiday music, hot chocolate and cookies onboard.
Dec. 13-14 and 20-21 from 6 to 7 p.m. and 7:30 to 8:30 p.m starting from the McKinney Avenue Transit Authority Uptown Station, 2700 Cityplace West Blvd., Dallas. $25 for adults, $15 for ages 2-17, free for children under 2. mata.org/holidayexpress.
Holidays at the Heard
The half-mile trail at the Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary will be illuminated with Christmas lights and decor “designed to enhance, rather than overpower, the sanctuary’s natural beauty.” Take a nighttime walk along the family-friendly path. (Nearly a dozen dinosaurs from the Heard’s temporary exhibit will also be along the trails.) Children can get photos with Father Christmas and Mother Nature and visit the North Pole Children’s Village. There will be music by Cafe Society Band (Dec. 17) and La Pompe (Dec. 18) and hot beverages and seasonal treats for purchase.
Dec. 17-18 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary, 1 Nature Place, McKinney. $10, $7 for ages 3-12, free for ages 2 and younger. heardmuseum.org/holidays.
DeSoto Hometown Holiday Parade and Celebration
FREE The community parade steps off from the Disciple Central Community Church and heads west on Pleasant Run Road to DeSoto Town Center (211 E. Pleasant Run Road). Post-parade activities at the town center continue into the afternoon with story time, photos with Santa and ice skating.
Dec. 18 at 10 a.m. starting from Disciple Central Community Church, 901 N. Polk St., DeSoto. Free. facebook.com/DeSotoRec.
Christmas at the Cabin
See how Texans celebrated Christmas 150 years ago at the Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area’s Minor-Porter Log House, which was built in the late 1860s. Families can make corn husk dolls, ornaments and hand-dipped candles and enjoy carols and hot cider.
Dec. 18 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area, 201 E. Jones St., Lewisville. Admission is $5 per vehicle. llela.org.
Downtown Stocking Stroll
FREE Christmastime trick-or-treating? Instead of a spooky treat bag, take a stocking to be stuffed with goodies and treats from participating downtown Dallas businesses. Visit Main Street Garden to receive a map of participants and a stocking (while supplies last). The park will also have free train rides for children and a Boho Market with gifts and food for purchase. (See listing at right for more on the market.)
Dec. 18 from noon to 3 p.m. Pick up a map of participating businesses at Main Street Garden, 1902 Main St., Dallas. Free admission. facebook.com/DowntownDallasInc.
Carols and Cocoa
FREE Visit Mesquite’s new Front Street Station event area to sing carols, enjoy free cocoa and cookies, and watch a family-friendly holiday movie.
Dec. 18 starting at 4 p.m. at Front Street Station, 100 W. Front St., Mesquite. Free admission. downtownmesquitetx.com.
Merry and Bright Christmas Drone Show
FREE A fleet of 160 drones will create Christmas-themed imagery synchronized to holiday music in the sky over Grapevine’s Main Street. The show will last about nine minutes, and Victorian carolers will perform before and after.
Dec. 11 and 18 at 8 p.m. at Peace Plaza at Grapevine Main Station, 815 S. Main St., Grapevine. Admission is free; reserved seating is $25, which includes a $10 gift card to spend at Harvest Hall’s food stalls. gograpevine.com/event/droneshow.