Top Holiday Events in Atlanta

Most Famous Reindeer of All

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Center for Puppetry Arts
Through Dec. 31. See puppet.org for show times.
Rudolph is back with this faithful adaptation of the holiday story. Recommended for ages 4 and older. 1404 Spring St. NW, Atlanta. 404-873-3391. Ages 2 and older, $20.50-$24.50.

Reindeer Day
Chattahoochee Nature Center / Dec. 11. Noon-4 p.m.
Meet live reindeer, make reindeer crafts and eat campfire treats. 9135 Willeo Rd., Roswell. 770-992-2055. Included with admission. Adults, $10; ages 3-12, $6; 2 and younger, free.

Watch a Parade

Children’s Christmas Parade
Downtown Atlanta / Dec. 3. 10:30 a.m.
Floats, giant helium-filled balloons and marching bands will flow down the street, and the arrival of Santa will announce the holiday season. Begins on Peachtree St. at 16th St. 404-785-7974. Free.

Visit the Icy Kingdom

The Snow Queen
Serenbe Playhouse
Dec. 1-30. See serenbeplayhouse.com for show times.
Follow the brave Gerda on her epic quest to save her brother from the icy allure of the mysterious Snow Queen. Bundle up for this outdoor production. 9065 Selborne Ln., Chattahoochee Hills. 770-463-1110. Adults, $20; 12 and younger, $15.

A Squealing Good Time

Macy’s Pink Pig
Lenox Square Mall
Through Jan. 1. Search “Macy’s Pink Pig” for schedule.
Closed Christmas Day.Atlanta’s famous pig train takes families for a life-sized storybook ride. Upper Level Parking Deck. 3393 Peachtree Rd. NE, Atlanta. 404-233-6767. $3 per ride.

Celebrate World Cultures

Celebrations in Light
Children’s Museum of Atlanta
Dec. 3-30. See childrensmuseumatlanta.org for schedule.
A showcase of different holidays from around the world with themed activities, cultural performances, puppeteers, art workshops and more. A different holiday is celebrated each week. 275 Centennial Park Dr., Atlanta. 404-527-3693. $14.95; younger than 1, free.

The Chinese Lantern Festival

Centennial Olympic Park
Dec. 9-Jan. 15. Nightly 6-11 p.m.
Chinese culture will be illuminated through brightly-colored lanterns and cultural performances. The South Park will be decorated with 25 handcrafted lanterns, a three-story pagoda and a 200-foot-long Chinese dragon. 265 Park Ave. W, Atlanta. 404-223-4412. Free.

Sounds of the Season

Spivey Hall Children’s Choir
Clayton State University
Dec. 9, 7 p.m.; Dec. 10-11, 3 p.m.
A fusion of classic favorites and new selections to
showcase the talents of the 170-member children’s
choir. 2000 Clayton State Blvd., Morrow. 678-466-4200.
Tickets start at $25.

Cirque de la Symphonie’s Holiday Spectacular
Atlanta Symphony Hall
Dec. 20-21. Tues. 8 p.m.; Wed. 2 and 8 p.m.
Jugglers, clowns and acrobats will be flying high above the orchestra as it performs the Cirque de la Symphonie with an impressive score of classical hits. 1280 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta; 404-733-4900. $16.20-$125.

Play by the Lake

Winter Adventure
Lake Lanier Islands / Through Jan. 4.
See lanierislands.com for schedule.
Lanier World transforms into a wonderland with play snow, slides, carnival rides, light displays, a live nativity and more. Also meet Santa and see holiday movies. 7000 Holiday Rd., Lake Lanier Islands. 770-932-7200. Light tour: $45 per car; rides and snow area: $29.99 per adult/child above 36 inches; $19.99 per child under 36 inches.

12 Little Girls from Paris

Madeline’s Christmas
Horizon Theatre Company
Dec. 3-31. See horizontheatre.com for show times.
A musical holiday adventure with Madeline and her friends in Paris. 1083 Austin Ave., Atlanta. 404-584-7450. Adults, $15; ages 11 and younger, $12.

Holiday Tea Time

Teddy Bear Tea
Callanwolde Fine Arts Center
Dec. 4 and 11.  2-3:30 p.m.
Bring a special teddy bear for a festive children’s tea and hot chocolate with Santa. Includes admission to the home and each child receives a gift bag. Ages 4 and older. 980 Briarcliff Rd. NE, Atlanta. 404-872-5338. Pre-register. $25/ person.

Holiday Tea with American Girl
American Girl Store and Bistro
Dec. 4, 11 and 18. 2 p.m.
Holiday menu of tea treats, snowflake craft and more. Ages 8 and older. 1202 North Point Cir., Alpharetta. 877-247-5223. Reservations required. $21.50 per person.

Christmas Classics

Stone Mountain Christmas
Stone Mountain Park
Through Jan. 4.
Visit stonemountainpark.com for schedule.
More than two million lights, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer 4-D movie, live performances of holiday favorites, Singalong Train, Christmas Parade, holiday shopping, visit with Santa and fireworks finale. 1000 Robert E. Lee Blvd., Stone Mountain. 770-498-5690. $25.95 per person for Christmas Adventure Pass. Parking, $15.

Candlelight Nights
Atlanta History Center
Dec. 9 and 16, 5:30-9:30 p.m.
See the grounds and gardens decorated for the holidays and enjoy a candlelit stroll. Holiday traditions of years past come alive with interpreters, music and special activities.  130 W. Paces Ferry Rd., Atlanta. 404-814-4000. Adults, $15; ages 5 and younger, $8.

Watch Holiday Classics

Roswell Winter Puppet Series
Roswell Cultural Arts Center
Dec. 15-17; Dec. 21-23. See roswellgov.com for show times.
Get ready for hilarious holiday high-jinx as residents of the North Pole perform in their annual talent show. 950 Forrest St., Roswell. 770-594-6232. $5; ages 1 and younger, free.

Holly Jolly Film Fest
Fernbank Museum of Natural History
Through Dec. 17. Sat. 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Holiday movies with some days featuring crafts and cultural programing. 767 Clifton Rd. NE, Atlanta. 404-929-6300. Included with museum admission. Adults, $18; ages 3-12, $16; ages 2 and younger, free.

Aboard the Polar Express

Polar Express Adventure
Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History
Dec. 10. 2:30-7 p.m.
Walk through the museum decorated like “The Polar Express” and see performers bring the story to life including the British Academy of Performing Arts dancers. Enjoy readings of “The Polar Express” between performances and visits with Santa. Come in PJs. 2829 Cherokee St., Kennesaw. 770-427-2117. Adults, $7.50; ages 4-12, $5.50; ages 3 and younger, free.

Spin the Dreidel

Hanukkah Story Time
Little Shop of Stories / Dec. 22. 7 p.m.
Listen to stories about the Festival of Lights, menorahs, latkes, dreidels and gelt, plus dreidel games. 133 E. Court St., Decatur. 404-373-6300. Free.

Menorah Lighting
Marietta Square
Dec. 30. 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Meet at the Glover Park stage for a Chanukah celebration including holiday music and children’s games presented by Congregation Ner Tamid. Enjoy hot chocolate after the lighting. 100 Cherokee St., Marietta. 678-264-8575. Free.
For a full list of menorah lightings see our Hanukkah section in the holiday calendar.

Dine with Santa’s Helpers

Elf on a Shelf Dinner
Gwinnett Historic Courthouse
Dec. 16. 6:30-8 p.m.
Elves serve dinner in the Superior Court Ballroom, with the big elf himself available for photos. Includes photo opportunity, decorate a cookie and craft. 185 West Crogan St., Lawrenceville. Pre-register before Dec. 14.  770-822-5450. $15 per person; 12 months and younger, free.

Santa Swims!

Festival of the SEAson
Georgia Aquarium / Through Jan. 1.
See georgiaaquarium.org for times.
Galleries and exhibits turn into a winter wonderland, incorporating light and music shows, appearances by Santa and SCUBA Claus, holiday entertainment, daily tree-lighting ceremonies and more. 225 Baker St., Atlanta. 404-581-4000. Adults, $39.95; ages 3-12, $33.95; ages 2 and younger, free.

Swim with Santa
Bethesda Park Aquatic Center
Dec. 17. 11 a.m.
Have a picture taken with Santa and enjoy crafts and games. Children 7-10 must be accompanied by an adult. Children 6 and younger must be accompanied by an adult in the water. 678-277-0880. Pre-register by Dec. 9. 225 Bethesda Church Rd., Lawrenceville. $12 per child; free adult admission.

Admire Dancing Sugarplums and Snowflakes

The Nutcracker
Fox Theatre
Dec. 9-24. See foxtheatre.org for show times.
The Atlanta Ballet’s presentation of the holiday classic live with the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra. 660 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta. 404-881-2100. $21.50-124.50.
For more Nutcracker performances see our list in the holiday calendar.

See the Story of Christmas on Stage

Black Nativity
Southwest Arts Center Performance Theater
Through Dec. 18. See blacknativityatlanta.com for show times.
A rendition of the Christmas Story with thrilling voices, dance and gospel music. 915 New Hope Rd., Atlanta. 404-613-3220. Adults, $45; 12 and younger, $15.
For additional live nativity scenes see our list in the holiday calendar.


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