Holiday Hulabaloo: 2018

. November 30, 2018.

Looking for ways to put the jolly in your family festivities this season? Look no further! From twinkling lights and Santa sightings, to caroling and tree lightings, here is a list of fun activities to keep the kids merry this holiday!

Dec. 1
Let It Snow in Saline Holiday Parade


Downtown Saline
Michigan Ave. | 734-429-4494 |

Saline’s 43rd annual Christmas Parade features lights, music, entertainment, and a visit from Santa! More than 100 parade participants, including dancers, musicians, and animals.

Dec. 1
Milan’s Christmas Around The World ‘Parade


734-439-7932 |

Parade proceeds along Main St., beginning on W. Main and ending at the Old Fire Barn, where children can visit with Santa.

Dec. 1

$5/adults, $4/seniors, $2/ children ages 5-12, under age 5/ free

Advent Happening First Presbyterian Church
1432 Washtenaw Ave. | 734-662-4466 |

Join in the creating and crafting! Begin your holiday preparations by making gifts and ornaments, decorating cookies and creating Christmas cards. Friends and neighbors are always welcome and encouraged! A craft event for ages 2-102.

Dec. 1
Sled with Reindeer Workshop


Home Depot
3300 Carpenter Rd., Ypsilanti | 734-975-1029 |

Dash through the snow in this hands-on workshop where parents and children can build and decorate a model sleigh pulled by a reindeer. All kids receive a certificate of achievement, a workshop apron, and commemorative pin while supplies last. Children must be present in store to participate in the workshop.

Dec. 1
Hometown Holiday: Homemade Tween and Teen Gifts


Chelsea District Library
221 S. Main St., Chelsea | 734-475-8732

Tweens and teens can make a homemade gift, and wrap it, too. A great opportunity for parents to drop off kids and do some downtown shopping. Geared for ages 10-17.

Dec. 1
Christmas at the Mansion Historic Gordon Hall

8341 Island Lake Rd., Dexter | 734-426-2519 |

Make a gingerbread house, visit with Santa, and peruse the Christmas Village Collection featuring a magical display of Department 56 Christmas Villages. Suggested donation $5/person. Additional Gordon Mansion open houses on December 9, 10, 27, 28 from 6-8pm.

Dec. 2
14th Annual Chelsea Light Parade

6pm | 734-474-9178

Parade features dozens of lighted floats and vehicles, marching bands, and Santa! Parade starts at Chelsea State Bank’s south-end lot (corner of US12 and M52) and travels north on Main Street to Jackson Street. Following the parade, the community is invited to warm up with hot chocolate, s’mores and fire pits at the Clocktower Commons (320 N. Main St).

Dec. 1-2
Ballet Chelsea’s The Nutcracker


Chelsea High School
740 N. Freer Rd., Chelsea | 734-475-3070 |

Ballet Chelsea is celebrating their 21st annual performance of the Nutcracker in collaboration with Jackson Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra will provide live musical accompaniment at all performances.

Dec. 1 – 2
Christmas On The Farm

Saturday 10am-4pm
Sunday 12-4pm
$5/adults, $4/seniors, $2/ children ages 5-12, under age 5/ free

Waterloo Farm Museum
9998 Waterloo Munith Rd., Grass Lake | 517-596-2254

Tour the 15-room farmhouse fully decorated in period style for the holidays. Hand-crafted greens and baked goods available for purchase.

Dec. 1-2,/7-9/13-16/ | 18-23/26-27
Holiday Nights Greenfield Village


20900 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn | 313-982-6001

Take a historic home tour and explore holiday traditions of the past. Smell roasting chestnuts, hear the sleigh bells, and sing along with the carolers. Holiday goods, food and beverages are available. Fireworks finale every evening. And yes, Santa will be there with his reindeer, too! $28/ ages 12 and up, $25.25/seniors, $21/children ages 5-11 non-member, under age 4/ free. Members receive a discount.

Dec. 1
Christmas Party


Downtown Home and Garden
210 S. Ashley St.

This neighborhood Christmas party features smoked turkey, Grandma Mooberry’s cranberry salad, hot cider and eggnog. Visit the farm animals while listening to the Oliver Mayman Quintet. Santa will be on hand to listen to the holiday wish lists.

Dec. 1, 8pm | 2, 2pm

Tickets are $16-$40.

Handel’s Messiah Hill Auditorium
825 North University Ave. | 734-764-2538 |

Music director Scott Hanoian conducts the UMS Choral Union and Ann Arbor Symphony in this annual community tradition.

Dec. 1
Just in the Nick of TimE

Tickets are $6/person at the door.

Saline Area Players
211 Willis Rd., Saline | 734-255-4388 |

In this Christmas whodunit, ace detective Red Mistletoe is hired to find the missing Santa Claus before the town citizens lose their Christmas spirit.

Dec. 4
Holiday Movie and Popcorn


Dexter District Library
3255 Alpine St., Dexter | 734-426-4477 |

A holiday showing of How The Grinch Stole Christmas (2000). This event coincides with early release day for Dexter schools.

Dec. 6, 7:30pm
The Beach Boys
Reason For The Season Christmas Tour

Michigan Theater
603 E. Liberty | 866-820-4553 |

Led by Mike Love and Bruce Johnston, live performance features songs from the new holiday album “Reason For The Season”. Ticket prices are $65-$125.

Dec. 7, 5:30pm
Downtown Tree Lighting

Ypsilanti District Library
229 W. Michigan Ave., Ypsilanti
734-482-4110 ext. 1323 |

Festivities begin with cookie decorating and hot chocolate. Tree lighting takes place at 6pm, followed by carolling with the Ypsilanti Community Choir and a visit from Santa!

Dec. 7, 5-10pm
Kids Night Out

Saline Rec Center
1866 Woodland Dr., Saline
734-429-3502 |

Parents can do their holiday shopping while kids have a blast making crafts, watching movies, playing games and swimming. Pizza dinner included. Register online. $25/members, $35/non-members

Dec. 8, 11am-5:30pm
Tiny Expo Indie Holiday Art
and Craft Fair

Ann Arbor District Library, Downtown
343 S. Fifth St. | 734-327-4200 |

Shop local and handmade! Tiny Expo features over 40 artists and crafters selling handmade wares in a festive library space. Hands-on activities will also be offered in the Secret Lab.

Dec. 8, 9:30am-12pm
North Pole Breakfast

Rock Paper Scissors
216 S. Main St.| 734-531-6264 |

Hosted by Rock Paper Scissors at The Pretzel Bell Captain’s Room, joined by Cherry Republic and Cause for a Party. Kids are encouraged to wear their favorite Christmas jammies and enjoy a delicious breakfast with crafts, reindeer games, storytime and North Pole Friends. Half of the ticket proceeds benefit the Ozone House to support homeless teens, runaways and high risk youth. Donations of hats and gloves will be accepted. Perfect for ages 2-10, but everyone is welcome. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Children under 1 are free. $35/child.

Dec. 8, 4pm
Holiday Hustle 5K

Monument Park
8000 Ann Arbor St., Dexter | 734-929-9027 |

This charity event donates $5 of entry fee to local Dexter charities. Bring canned goods and non-perishable food items for the needy and get a raffle ticket for each item to win prizes. Race begins at Monument Park and travels through Main Street and downtown. Registration prices received online before noon December 6: $34/5K, $19/1 mile under 18, $29/1 mile 18 and over. Registration prices on race weekend December 7-8: $40/5K, $25/1 mile under 18, $35/1 mile 18 and over

Dec. 8, 10am-1:30pm
Treasure Trail to Santa

Busch’s Shopping Center
565 E. Michigan Ave. Saline
734-429-4494 |

Visit businesses at Busch’s Shopping Center for treats,
free carriage rides and a visit with Santa!

Dec. 7, 14 & 21, 6-8pm
Festive Fridays

The Creature Conservancy
4950 Ann Arbor-Saline Rd.
734-929-9324 |

Indoor facility features holiday light displays and animals on exhibit, including Sven the Reindeer. Cookies and hot cocoa available. Cost $15/person, children under two free. Call ahead to register and reserve a seat.

Dec. 9, 2-5pm
WinterFest Multicultural Holiday Celebration in the Log Cabin

910 Merrill Plaisance, Detroit
313-757-2751 |

Bring your whole family for an afternoon of Christmas magic with Santa and Mrs. Claus, horse and carriage rides through the woods (suggested donation $5/adult or family, $2/child), sweets, treats and hot cocoa. Holiday ornament making and music are offered as well. Celebrate Hanukkah with the Downtown Synagogue and Kwanzaa with the Wright Museum of African American History. Free

Dec. 10, 6-8pm
Sixth Annual One Candle For Tzedakah

Jewish Community Center
2935 Birch Hollow Dr. | 734-971-0990 |

The evening begins with dinner and Hanukkah activities to celebrate the Jewish Festival of Lights. Dr. Nitro will present his Mad Science Show. But the main focus of the evening will be wrapping your donated gifts for the families who would not otherwise have the means to enjoy the holiday season. Register online. Tickets are for individuals $12/member or $15/nonmember, and for households $30/member or $35/non-member.

December 13 6-8pm
Talk with Santa Live on TV!

CTN | 734-794-6155 |

Call and talk with Santa Live on TV! Watch the live stream online at and click Public Access or watch on the free Comcast Channel 17. Call Santa at 734-794-6155. Free Comcast Channel 17.

Dec. 15 6:30pm
The Nutcracker

Michigan Theater
603 E. Liberty | 866-820-4553 |

A must-see holiday event featuring Michigan’s talented ballet students, joined by international professional ballet dancers and guest artists. Ticket prices $35-$45.

Dec. 15, 5:30pm
Charlie Brown Christmas

Fox Theater
2211 Woodward Ave. Detroit
800-854-2196 |

Everyone’s favorite holiday classic comes to life in the all-new touring production. Join Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus and the whole Peanuts gang as they produce their own Christmas play and ultimately learn the true meaning of the season. Ticket prices $32-$638, individual and group

Dec. 15, 2-3pm
Graham Cracker Gingerbread Houses

Ann Arbor District Library, Downtown Multi-Purpose Room
343 S. Fifth Avenue | 734-327-4200 |

Build a “gingerbread” house out of icing, candy, and graham crackers! This event is designed for children in preschool–grade 8.

Dec. 15, 16 1-4pm
Christmas at Rentschler Farm

1265 E. Michigan Ave., Saline
734-944-0442 |

Old fashioned 1930’s Christmas farmhouse tour. Visit with Santa, make a craft and enjoy cider and donuts. Demonstrations throughout the day. Presented by the Saline Area Historical Society. Free.

Dec. 16 7:30pm
Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis

Fox Theater
2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit
800-854-2196 |

A Christmas classic and tradition for many families, featuring Fresh Aire musical compositions and multimedia effects. Tickets $38-$628, sold individually and as groups.

Dec. 18 11am-12pm
Drop-In Holiday Story Time

Dexter District Library
3255 Alpine St., Dexter
734-426-4477 |

Stories, rhymes and music celebrating winter and the holidays. Refreshments are provided. Geared for children six and under, but everyone is welcome. Free

Dec. 21, 7-8:30pm
Kwanzaa: A Celebration
of Unity and Pride

Ann Arbor District Library, Downtown
343 S. Fifth St. | 734-327-4200 |

Elizabeth James from the U-M Afroamerican and African Studies Department presents an interactive discussion on the history and current celebration of the holiday. Free

Dec. 23 12pm, 4pm, 8pm
Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker

Fox Theater
2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit
800-854-2196 |

This quintessential holiday performance is a must-see.
Ticket prices $36-$658, sold individually and in groups.

December 24
Christmas Eve Worship

First Presbyterian Church
1432 Washtenaw Ave. | 734-662-4466 |

Join First Presbyterian Church for their Christmas Eve
worship and events. 3pm Christmas Pageant 5pm and
7pm Candlelight Lessons and Carols 11pm Candlelight Communion Service

Dec. 31, 11:30am-12:30pm
Noon Year’s Eve Party!

Ann Arbor District Library, Malletts Creek Branch
3090 E. Eisenhower Pkwy. | 734-327-4200 |

Join the library for a fun celebration of the new year! They’ll start with party stories before diving into giant games, music and a balloon drop at noon! This party is planned for children in preschool–grade 5.

Dec. 31, 11 am-1 pm
Noon Year’s Eve

The Toledo Zoo
2 Hippo Way, Toledo | 419-385-5721 |

This family-friendly event will focus on making 2019 a greener year. Celebrate at the stroke of noon with the recycling ball drop, biodegradable confetti, a toast of juice, and the singing of Auld Lang Syne. $19/adults, $16/ages 2-11, $16/seniors, under 2/free.

Santa Sightings

Need to review your wish list with Santa? Visit one of these venues for a chance to chat Jolly Old St. Nick!

Dec. 1, 8:30-10:30am
Bruce’s Breakfast with Santa

Chelsea Comfort Inn Village Conference Center,
1645 Commerce Park Dr., Chelsea
734-474-9178 |

Kids enjoy a free pancake breakfast with other goodies and a visit with Santa. Bring your camera for photo opportunities! The breakfast’s festivities celebrate Bruce Szcodronski and his impact on this cherished Hometown Holiday event. Free.

Dec. 1-24, During mall hours
Santa at the Mall

Briarwood Mall
Von Maur Court, 100 Briarwood Circle, Ann Arbor
734-769-9610 |

Children will have the opportunity to visit with Santa and have their photo taken. A Caring Santa event will be held on December 2, 9-10:30am. Children with sensory, physical or other developmental needs will have the opportunity to visit with Santa and have their photos taken as well. Call for reservations. Don’t miss their Pet Photos with Santa event on December 9 from 6:30-8pm.

Dec. 3-4, 11am-4pm
Santa Train

Southern Michigan Railroad
301 W. Bartlett St., Clinton
734-396-0416 |

Take a fun thirty minute train ride with Santa! Train departs from the Bartlett station. Every trip allows plenty of time for the children with Santa. Trains are not heated, so dress appropriately for the weather. $16.75/adult, $7.30/child ages 2-12, under two free.

Dec. 12 6-7:30pm
Santa Visits Wurtzel Family Dentistry

Wurtzel Family Dentistry
4554 Washtenaw Ave. | 734-971-2675 |

Wurtzel Family Dentistry welcomes your family to join their family for a visit from Santa.

Dec. 16, 12-2pm
A Visit With Father Christmas

Matthei Botanical Gardens
1800 N. Dixboro Rd. | 734-647-7600 |

The annual visit by the Real McCoy, Father Christmas. In town for one day only. A great photo opp! Free!

Dec. 1-2, 7-9, 18-23, & 26-27
Supper with Santa
Dinner 4:45-6:30 pm; Event 6:30-10pm

Greenfield Village
20900 Oakwood Blvd, Dearborn
313-982-6001 |

Take a horse drawn carriage ride to A Taste of History restaurant for a buffet style dinner perfect for kids. Families will be able to have photos taken with Santa, and children will also make a holiday craft. Enjoy a sing along with Santa and join a caroling procession to Holiday Lights in Greenfield Village. Call for reservations.

Winter Wonderland Santa Visits

Michigan International Speedway
Winter Wonderland hours: 6-9pm
Santa’s hours: 6-8:30pm
12626 US-12, Brooklyn | 517-937-6426 |

This event features seasonal food and drinks and a visit from Santa Claus himself with photo opportunities. Puppet shows and train rides are also available. Live reindeer will be on display December 7, 14, 21 from 6-9pm. This event is part of the drive thru Christmas light show. $25/car or vehicle, $40/mini bus, $40/limo or motor home, $70/tour bus

Dec. 9, 10am & 12:30pm
Santa Central at Hudson Mills Metropark

Hudson Mills Metropark,
8801 N. Territorial Rd., Dexter | 734-426-8211

Kids can visit with Santa, go on a hay ride, and make seasonal crafts. You can use your own camera for that perfect holiday moment. Call to pre-register. $5/child. A Metroparks vehicle entry permit is required to enter any Metropark.

Dec. 22 11am-2pm
Santa at the Yankee Air Museum

Yankee Air Museum at the Willow Run Airport
47884 D St., Belleville | 734-483-4030 |

Santa will be flying in on his private helicopter and landing in the gift shop parking lot. Parents are encouraged to take photos. Free all day for kids. Free for parents until 11:30 am.

Holiday Lights

Capture the magic of the holiday season with a trip to one of these light displays.

Dec. 1-31
Wild Lights at the Detroit Zoo

Weeknights and Sundays 5:30-9pm
Friday and Saturday 5:30-10pm
8450 W. 10 Mile Rd. Royal Oak
248-541-5717 |

More than five million LED lights will light up the trees, buildings and sculptures at the Detroit Zoo. Holiday entertainment and special activities for all ages. Purchase tickets in advance $11-17/person. Purchase tickets at the front gate $22/person. Children under 2 free.

Dec. 1-31
Wayne County Lightfest

Monday-Friday 7-10pm
Saturday-Sunday 6-10pm
7651 North Merriman Rd., Westland
734-261-1990 |

Lightfest is celebrating its 25th anniversary with music, refreshments, and fireworks. Stop by the Santa Shelter for photos with Santa and refreshments. Admission $5/ vehicle, $8/ photo with Santa

Dec. 1-31
Lights Before Christmas

Toledo Zoo
Sunday-Thursday 3-8pm,
Friday-Saturday 3-9pm
2 Hippo Way, Toledo
419-385-5721 |

This event features over one million lights and more than 200 illuminated animal images, animated displays, Ice Slide, visits with Santa and more! $18/adult, $15/kids and seniors, under 2/free. Members receive a discounted rate.

Dec. 1-31
Nite Lites at the Michigan International Speedway

Sunday-Thursday 5:30-9pm
Friday, Saturday 5:30-10pm
Michigan International Speedway
12626 US-12, Brooklyn | 517-937-6426 |

Michigan’s largest Christmas light display! Nite Lites is
a drive thru Christmas light show. Certain dates will also
feature visits with Santa and to their Winter Wonderland. $25/car or vehicle, $40/mini-bus, $40/limo or motorhome, $70/tour bus.

Dec. 1-31
Potter Park Wonderland of Lights

Thursdays-Sundays, 5-8pm
1301 S. Pennsylvania Ave., Lansing
517-483-4222 |

Holiday light displays and animal exhibits at the 24th annual Wonderland of Lights. There will be cookies, crafts, and animal encounters. $7/ adults, $5/children 3-12, Under three free. December 1 is a Toys for Tots event. Bring a new unwrapped toy for free admission

Trees around the tree town

Looking for a real tree this year? Here is a list of local Christmas tree farms where you can cut your own or purchase pre-cut trees, wreaths and greenery.

Arend Tree Farm
3512 Notten Rd. Grass Lake
734-475-7584 |
9am-5pm 7 days a week

This family farm features 400 acres of trees, with horse-drawn wagon rides on weekends.

Braun’s Tree Farm
796 Warren Rd.
734-663-2717 |
10am-dark Friday-Sunday

Bring the whole family (dogs welcome) to this 50 acre farm, where you can cut your own tree, or purchase pre-cut trees, wreaths, stands and more.

Hillside Christmas Tree Farm
14745 Sharon Hollow Rd.
Manchester | 517-456-7233
10am-5pm December 1-2

The farm features a tot lot, wagon rides, activities and displays.

Lodi Farms
2880 S. Wagner Rd.
734-665-5651 |
9am-6pm Monday-Friday
9am-4pm Saturdays
10am-4pm Sundays

This local farm features cut and live potted trees, as well as handmade wreaths, roping, greens and custom arrangements.

Matthes Tree Farm
13416 Lulu Rd., Ida
734-269-2668 |
9am-6pm Seven days a week
See Santa on Saturdays and Sundays from 12-5pm

This farm features a petting zoo, handmade crafts, and a Christmas shop featuring wreaths and roping. The kitchen is open 9am-4pm every weekend and offers hot dogs, chili dogs, pulled pork sandwiches, nachos, popcorn, caramel donuts, homemade cookies, beverages and more. Entertainment from local bands, choirs and dance troupes.

Urquhart’s Tree Farm
10050 Jerusalem Rd. | Chelsea
734-433-8733 |
3-5pm | Wednesday and Thursday
12-5pm Friday
10am-5pm | Saturday-Sunday

This farm features 200 acres of trees and wagon rides
on the weekends. Last full service day is December 15, with self-service days December 16-23.

Three Cedars Farm
7897 Six Mile Rd. Northville
248-437-8200  |
10am-8pm Friday and
Saturday1-5pm Sunday
Santa Hours: 4-8pm Fridays
11am-2pm Saturdays
1-5pm Sundays

Visit the farm for hot cocoa and photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, and purchase Christmas trees, wreaths and roping. Cash or check only, credit cards not accepted. ATM on site. No pets allowed.

Westman’s Tree Farm
8000 Chamberlin Rd. Dexter
734-646-7062 |
3:30pm-dark Monday-Thursday
9am-dark Friday-Sunday

This farm has thousands of trees to choose from, and is senior friendly and handicap- accessible. Cash or check only, no credit cards accepted.