After you’ve finished your turkey-filled leftovers and traded your stretchy Thanksgiving pants for your favorite Christmas sweater, the holiday season has officially begun. To get into a festive mood, check out this handful of festive events around town to help you celebrate the joyous occasion.
And don't miss the other cheerful shows around the city this holiday season, including Atlanta’s twinkling lights or spirited ice skating rinks.
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The Nissan Foundation and Fernbank Museum of Natural History have once again joined forces to bring Winter Wonderland back to Atlanta. See how families from Africa, the Caribbean, Europe, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, North America and South America deck their halls with the museum’s display of more than 30 Christmas trees—each have been decorated by consulate generals from countries spanning the globe.
On select days before Christmas, you’ll find family-friendly activities like holiday flicks, cultural crafts and performances, puppet crafts with the Center for Puppetry Arts, sneak peeks from Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker and the famed Santa-saurus.
Dates: November 17, 2017 to January 7, 2018 (closed Thanksgiving and Christmas); 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (opening at 12:30 p.m. on New Year's Eve)
Location: Fernbank Museum of Natural History
Cost: Free for Museum Members; $18 per adult ticket; $17 for students/seniors tickets; $16 for children ages 3 to 12; free for children ages 2 and younger.
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Westside Provisions’ annual holiday celebration is back, complete with complimentary hot chocolate and salted caramel corn from West Egg Café for your stroll through the trendy district. Expect a snow machine, carolers and retailers like JCT Kitchen & Bar and Cooks & Soldiers serving complimentary s’mores and other sweet treats alongside their goods.
Don’t Miss Santa Claus—you can find him at Seed Factory for family photo-ops with complimentary prints.
Dates: Awaiting details for 2017
Location: Westside Provisions District
Cost: Free admission; purchases priced separately
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For more than 50 years, families have celebrated the holidays with a ride on Atlanta’s favorite vintage train: Priscilla, the Pink Pig makes her way through a life-sized storybook filled beneath the legendary 170-foot, 1950’s themed Pink Pig Tent.
Dates: October 28 to December 31, 2017
Location: The rooftop of Macy's at Lenox Mall
Cost: $3 for 1 ride; 2 rides for $5.50, 3 rides for $7.50; proceeds benefit Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
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You may know the Indie Craft Experience (ICE) from their vintage and summer markets—founders Christy Petterson and Shannon Mulkey have built an empire on quarterly Southern-curated marketplaces. But this holiday season for the eighth year, ICE is hosting their Holiday Shopping Spectacular market at the oldest standing building in downtown Atlanta, complete with 175 vendors, DJ, festive cocktails and local food trucks.
Dates: November 9 to December 23, 2017
Location: Candler Park, 1390 McLendon Ave NE, Atlanta
Cost: In previous years there has been a $5 admission fee, children 12 and under enter for freeContinue to 5 of 6 below.
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Midtown Atlanta will become Santa Claus Lane as the largest holiday parade in the southeast marches down Peachtree Street. Complete with floats, giant balloons and marching bands, the parade is sponsored by and benefits Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Can’t make it? No worries—WSB-TV Channel 2 will broadcast the parade to an expected 500,000 viewers.
If you did not purchase a bleacher seat, it is suggested to arrive by 8:30 a.m.
Date: December 2, 2017 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon
Location: Begins at Peachtree St. and 16th St., ends at Peachtree St. and 5th St.
Cost: Free to stand, bleacher seats $18 per person
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A Victorian Holiday at Oakland
Visit Oakland Cemetery and experience the holidays in Victorian style with a tour through the seasonally decorated mausoleums, open for exploration and led by a costumed docent. Guests can also make their very own Victorian ornament and get a photo with Ole Saint Nick, all the while enjoying hot chocolate and holiday carols.
Don’t miss a sit-down reading of The Night Before Christmas or a 10 percent discount off of holiday items at the Visitor’s Center and Museum Shop.
Date: December 2, 2017 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: Oakland Cemetery
Cost: Free for members; adults $16; students and seniors $10