Friday, November 30, 2012

Holiday Happenings in the D

If you're looking for something festive to do in the Metro Detroit area this holiday season, you definitely have a lot of fun choices available! Here's a little sampling, although I'm sure there are many more. Please share if you know of a holiday event in the area that isn't listed here!

  • Crossroads Village & Huckleberry Railroad  Crossroads Village is a historical museum, kind of like Greenfield Village, but on a smaller scale. For the holidays, everything is decked out in Christmas lights. Don't miss the train ride! Kids can visit Santa and a lot more. Located in Flint, Crossroads Village is only about 12 miles from Birch Run. That could mean a perfect opportunity to get a little shopping done too! We went last weekend and had a wonderful time! Look for a separate blog post coming up soon. What you need to know: Christmas in the Village dates and times: November 30, December 1-2, 7-9, 14-16, 19-23, & 26-30; 4:00-9:30 PM. Train departures: 5:00, 5:50, 6:40, 7:30, and sometimes (if needed) 8:20, 9:10, and 10:00 PM. Additionally, Mondays in December plus Christmas Eve, the Village is open for drive-thru only, to see all the beautiful lights, from 5:00-9:00 PM, at a rate of $5 per vehicle (no buses). Village/Train Combo tickets: range from $10-13 (2 & under are FREE). Village only admission available, but you really don't want to visit during the holidays without riding the train!
  • Noel Night The other night, Chris's cousin mentioned she and her family were going downtown for Noel Night this weekend, and it sounded really cool so I came home and looked it up. I was so surprised when I found that this is the 40th year and I had never even heard of it! Here's the scoop, as far as I understand it. Taking place in Detroit's Midtown Cultural Center, Noel Night is a sort of giant holiday open house and extravaganza. Places like the DIA, the Detroit Historical Center, and the Michigan Science Center open their doors for FREE, with Santa visits all around. The streets are filled with family holiday craft activities, Christmas sing-a-longs, performances, and horse and carriage rides. How fun does this sound?? I was working on Chris to go, but unfortunately Bethany has a foot injury and I don't think walking around downtown for hours would help. What you need to know: Noel night is happening this Saturday, December 1st, from 5:00-9:30 PM. Most activities will be between Cass and John R and Kirby and Willis, with free shuttle service between venues. I'm sure there are costs associated with some activities (and don't forget parking!), but it sounds like there is quite a bit of fun to be had for FREE. Check out the website for more information, including a map with shuttle routes and venue locations.
  • Redford Theatre An historical Detroit movie house, the Redford Theatre offers several holiday happenings in the coming weeks, including showings of A Christmas Story and White Christmas. Santa will there for both of these events, and live organ music is played 30 minutes before showtime. What you need to know: Dates & Times: A Christmas Story, November 30 @ 8:00 PM, December 1 @ 2:00 PM & 8:00 PM; White Christmas, December 14 @ 8:00 PM, December 15 @ 2:00 PM & 8:00 PM. Tickets are $4.00 each, or Living Social is currently running a great deal: $6 for 2 tickets, a small drink, a small popcorn, and a small candy. For more information, including location and parking, visit the website. The Redford Theatre is cash only.
  • Warren Symphony Orchestra - Scrooge If some live Christmas music will help get you in the holiday spirit (and it will!), check out this local orchestra's holiday production, both orchestral and choral, taking place at Macomb Center for the Performing Arts. What you need to know: Date & Time: December 9 @ 3:00 PM. Tickets: $23/Adults, $20/Seniors, $10/College students, Kids (grade 12 & under) FREE (music to my ears!).
  • Holiday Nights in Greenfield Village An historical Christmas spectacular, complete with strolling carolers, ice skating, fireworks, and much more, this is a very popular event that sells out, so get your tickets now if you're interested! We went back when we were the parents of two, and had a wonderful time. In fact, we've been wanting to do it again ever since, but we haven't gotten around to it yet. What you need to know: Dates & Times: December 1, 7, 14, 16, 18-23, & 26-27, from 6:30 to 10:00 PM. December 8 & December 15 are already sold out! Tickets: Adults (13 & up) $20/$17 members, Kids (5-12) $15/$12.75 members, 4 & under are FREE. Parking is $5. Dining packages available. Keep in mind that this is a crowded event, and Greenfield Village is huge, so a lot of walking is involved.
  • The Henry Ford Museum If freezing your fanny off outdoors isn't your thing, consider visiting The Henry Ford Museum during the holidays for some indoor fun. Visit with Santa and enjoy the lovely holiday decorations. While you're there, you can also see The Polar Express at the IMAX theater. What you need to know: Hours: 9:30-5 daily, closed on Christmas. Santa is at the museum from now until December 24. Tickets: Museum admission is free for members, $17 for adults (13-61), $15 for seniors (62 & up), kids (5-12) $12.50, 4 & under are FREE. IMAX - check website for showtimes, Adults (13-61) $13.75/$11.75 members, Seniors (62+) $12.75/$11 members, Kids (2-12) $9.75/$8.25 members, under 2 are FREE if sitting on a lap.
  • Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical  This was probably my very favorite Christmas special when I was a kid, and although my kids have seen it on DVD and television many times (both the original and new versions), I'm excited for them to see this live production at the Detroit Opera House this year! What you need to know: Dates & Times: December 18-30, Tuesdays and Saturdays at 7:30 PM, Sunday evenings at 6:00 PM, Saturday matinees at 11:00 AM and 2:00 PM, Sunday matinees at 2:00 PM, AND special weekday matinees on 12/20, 12/26, & 12/27 at 1:00 PM. Ticket prices vary, please see the website for more info. Please note that babies in arms will NOT be permitted!
Obviously, this is an incomplete list, mostly consisting of things we have done in the past or plan on doing this year. I'll also throw out a couple favorite Santa haunts, in addition to the ones listed above. My favorite mall Santa is at the Somerset Collection. We haven't gone in a few years, but I know in the past they did timed slots for Santa visits. I'm assuming they're still doing this? This means get there early to reserve your spot, and then plan on hours of shopping and lunch before you get your turn. But  the pictures are really great! For a Santa visit in a really beautiful setting, consider the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores. In years past, they had a children's tea and then Santa visits in the adorable children's cottage. It doesn't look like they're doing that this year, but on the website it says a trip to Santa's Workshop is free with museum admittance. Santa is there on Saturdays through Christmas, from 10-4. Additionally, there are hands-on activities in the Workshop Tuesday-Sunday.

Again, please tell us if you know of other holiday events going on! My December calendar is pretty packed, but I might be persuaded to squeeze a couple more things in!


Mrs. Weber said...

Thanks for the reminder - I need to get tix to Crossroads Village - I've never been and think it would be such a fun family event to do :)

Jackie said...

We go to Crossroads Village every Christmas and throughout the year. It really is a neat place to visit!