Holiday Happenings Around Baltimore

Looking for some kid-friendly holiday fun? We’ve got you covered. Check out our round-up of (cool) approved holiday events ’round town. And keep checking back! As we find out about others, we’ll keep updating it.

Santa’s Workshop
Kiddie Crusoe
November 13th – December 21st
Tues 10─11:30am; Wed 5:30─7pm; Fri 6:30─8pm
Does your child love to do their own Holiday Shopping? Bring them to Kiddie Crusoe where their elves will help them create a special surprise gift for a parent, grandparent, sibling, or friend! Best of all you can drop them off and do some shopping yourself! $18/session or $15/session for 3+ sessions MORE INFO

The Polar Express 4D Experience
National Aquarium
Shows Daily
When a doubting young boy takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery that shows him that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe. THE POLAR EXPRESS 4D Experience is based on the inspiring and beloved Caldecott Medal children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg. MORE INFO

Lights on 34th Street
34th Street, Hampden
November 24 – December 31st, Nightly until 11:00 PM
Baltimore tradition! Come see the lights on 34th Street. It’s 100% free. MORE INFO

Symphony of Lights
Symphony Woods
November 19, 2012 – January 6, 2013
Times vary
Symphony of Lights is a spectacular display of 70 larger-than-life, animated and stationary light creations.  It is a long-standing community tradition and a “must-see” during the holiday season. Drive or walk thru at special designated times. MORE INFO

Holiday Festival of Trains and Toys
B & O Railroad Museum
November 23 – December 21, 2012
Celebrate the holiday season at Baltimore’s largest holiday display of toy and model train layouts.Weekend train rides and photo opportunities with Santa through December 23. Weekend train rides and photo opportunities with Frosty the Snowman through December 30. All ages enjoy indoor train carousel rides and crafts at Santa’s North Pole. Bring a new, unwrapped toy for donation to Toys for Tots through December 16 and receive 50% off admission. FREE with paid admission. MORE INFO

Power Plant Holiday Light Show
Power Plant
November 23rd – December 31st
Shows Friday – Saturday at 6 PM, 7 PM, 8 PM, 9 PM; Thursdays beginning 12/13 at 6 PM, 7 PM, 8 PM
One of the Waterfront’s most electrifying attractions – you won’t want to miss this year’s show featuring live flame effects reaching over 20 feet high, winter snow, fireworks at every show, and more! FREE MORE INFO

Completely New Holiday Train Garden
Fire Museum of Maryland
Saturdays, November 24th – December 29th
10 AM – 4 PM
Enjoy a completely new holiday train garden at the Fire Museum of Maryland! “1950’s” O-Scale train plus 40 antique fire engines. MORE INFO

Jolly Express Aboard Miss Anne
Watermark Cruises
Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays
6:00 PM, 7:00 PM, 8:00 PM
Annapolis’ favorite holiday activity makes its return for the 2012 season. Miss Anne is adorned in reindeer spirit and Captain Santa is at the helm during this cozy cruise of Spa Creek, lit up with dazzling lights for the holiday season. Enjoy holiday music while Santa takes you on a relaxing and enjoyable boat ride. MORE INFO

Breakfast with Santa
Local Family Center Y
November 30, 2012 – December 2, 2012
Times Vary
Santa will park his sleigh at your local Family Center Y Friday, November 30 through Sunday, December 2 for a FREE holiday breakfast hosted by the Y of Central Maryland. Children of all ages will enjoy a visit and pictures with Santa, as well as a variety of fun holiday activities. Space is limited, so please register at your local Family Center Y at least 48 hours in advance. FREE MORE INFO

Fells Point Old Thyme Christmas
Fells Point
November 30th – December 2, 2012
Times Vary – Check Schedule
An exciting way to celebrate Historic Fell’s Point and give back to the community. What better way to get in the holiday spirit than an authentic Christmas Market and Family Holiday Activities. St. Nick comes by tugboat, breakfast and photos with Santa, build your own gingerbread house and more! MORE INFO

Holiday Heap
St. Paul’s Church
December 1, 2012
10 AM – 5 PM
Charm City Craft Mafia’s Holiday Heap is a unique and alternative holiday shopping event in Baltimore, featuring 60+ talented artists and craftsmen hand picked from applicants all over the country as well as some of Baltimore’s favorite food trucks and coffee on hand to keep us all fueled, and some festive tunes to keep us toe tapping! As always, we’ll also have a raffle basket full of generously donated handmade items made by the vendors themselves – tickets will be $1 at the door, with all proceeds going to this year’s local charity – GREAT KIDS FARM. MORE INFO

Merry Tuba Christmas
Harborplace Ampitheater
December 1, 2012
3:00 PM
Over 200 festively-dressed tuba and euphonium player will capture the spirit of the holiday as they blend their unique styles, rhythms, and progressions for all to enjoy. FREE MORE INFO

Kwanzaa Family Day
Creative Alliance
December 1, 2012
2:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Dance, Drums & Activities in Honor of Kwanzaa with Sankofa Dance Theater! Drums sound out the voices of the past featuring Baba Jumoke’s magnificent Dancing ChiWara Processional at 2pm. African dance class at 3:30pm. Closing Storytelling at 4:30pm. MORE INFO

Baltimore Parade of Lighted Boats
Fells Point/Inner Harbor
December 1, 2012
6:00 PM – Fells Point, 6:30 PM – Inner Harbor
Decorated boats will light up Fells Point and the Inner Harbor! The boats will be judged and prizes awarded.  The prizes to be awarded will be for Best in Parade, Best Theme of Christmas, Best Illuminated, Best Large Power Boat, Best Small Power Boat, Best Large Sail Boat and Best Small Sail Boat. MORE INFO

Hands-On Holidays: Chanukah
Rosenbloom JCC
December 2, 2012
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
It’s a Chanukah Party! Celebrate with holiday songs, projects and a holiday related snack. Ages under 5. MORE INFO

40th Annual Mayor’s Christmas Parade
December 2, 2012
1:00 PM
Presented in Medfield-Hampden beginning at Poly / Western High Schools and crossing Cold Spring Lane, continuing south on Falls Road to 36th Street, turning East on 36th Street, turning North on Chestnut Avenue and ending at 37th Street. MORE INFO

Abrakadoodle Holiday ArtShop
December 2 & 8, 2012
Times Vary
Head to Abrakadoodle’s Annual Holiday Artshop! This “Make & Take” experience includes all supplies for your kids to create holiday treasures for family, friends teachers, and most of all, for the fun of creating Art to deck your halls! They’ll create several take home projects, enjoy treats, music and face painting! Space is limited. MORE INFO

Menorah Making
Charm City Kids Club
December 6, 2012
3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Make a menorah in celebration of Chanukah! RSVP by 12/4/12. MORE INFO

Monument Lighting Family Festival
Walters Art Museum
December 6, 2012
5:00 PM – 8:30 PM
Celebrate the holiday season and the annual lighting of the Washington Monument at The Walters during this free, family-friendly event! Enjoy seasonal performances, music, refreshments, holiday films and special winter-inspired kids’ art activities! See the Washington Monument be set aglow, followed by fireworks for all to admire. Warm up at The Walters! MORE INFO

Tree Lighting and Caroling
The Women’s Industrial Exchange
December 6, 2012
5:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Join the Woman’s Industrial Exchange and Kitchen for an annual Baltimore tradition. Shop in their gift store, warm up with a nice dinner in their cozy Kitchen, Christmas Carol up Charles Street and watch the annual tree lighting at the Washington Monument. MORE INFO

A Monumental Occasion
Washington Monument
December 6, 2012
5:30 PM
Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts presents A Monumental Occasion – a classic Baltimore tradition featuring the official lighting of the Washington Monument, live music, fireworks and refreshments. FREE MORE INFO

Christmas Open House Weekend
Ladew Gardens
December 7,8 and 9, 2012
11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
The circa 1747 Manor House is decorated in the theme of “A Magical Christmas” by volunteers and garden clubs in honor of the holiday season. Holiday arrangements, greens and gifts for sale. MORE INFO

Little Italy Christmas Tree Lighting
Little Italy
December 7, 2012
7:00 PM
ick off the Christmas season as we decorate a giant outdoor Christmas tree and the countdown begins to “light it up!” Choir Performance by Baltimore Choral Arts Society. Family-friendly event. Carolers, Santa Claus, free treats for the kids, complimentary roasted chestnuts, hot apple cider, hot chocolate and pizzelle. MORE INFO

Fire and Ice at Night
Downtown Towson
December 7, 2012
6:00 PM – 9:00 PM
View the ice sculptures located around downtown Towson! They will also have street performers, free roasted chestnuts, an s’mores offered by area restaurants. FREE MORE INFO

World Holiday Traditions

National Aquarium
December 7, 2012
5:00 PM – 9:00 PM
The National Aquarium’s Cultural Series celebrates world holiday traditions on December 7 from 5PM to 9PM! This event will feature Nutcracker Ballet Vignettes performances, live holiday jazz and an exhibit of Nativity scenes from around the world. Kids can make holiday cards to send to our service men and women. Don’t miss an appearance by our mascot, Puffin, the Polar Express train conductor, and the jolly bearded man in red himself, Santa Claus! MORE INFO

Open House Colonial Christmas at Mount Clare
Mount Clare House
December 8, 2012
10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Experience the holidays of years past at Mount Clare Museum House’s annual winter celebration. Special programs include live musical performances by the Monumental City Ancient Fife and Drum Corps. Purchase your fresh cut greens in the forecourt for holiday decorating. Looking for the perfect gift? The museum store is filled with holiday merchandise to satisfy your holiday shopping list. Fun for the whole family! MORE INFO

Dollar Days & Holiday Craft Fair
Baltimore Museum of Industry
December 8, 2012
10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Visit the museum for Downtown Dollar Days! Museum admission is $1.00! Plus, from 10:00 to 2:00 p.m. shop local craft vendors for the perfect holiday gifts. Be sure to bring the kids along to make a holiday ornament! MORE INFO

Baltimore Reads Holiday Fair
Baltimore Museum of Industry
December 8, 2012
10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Head to the fourth annual Baltimore Reads Holiday Fair. As always, they’ll have free food, free books and free gifts while supplies last–not to mention activities and a visit from Santa and his elves. MORE INFO

Decorate Nature for the Holidays – For Kids!
Cylburn Arboretum
December 8, 2012
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Use natural products to create garlands that will provide treats for backyard animals and birds. RSVP Required. Call 410-367-2217 to register. MORE INFO

The Nutcracker (for kids!)
Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
December 8, 2012
11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Join the BSO and dancers from the Baltimore School for the Arts as excerpts from this holiday classic come to life. Treat the entire family to the timeless tale of the Nutcracker and delight in some of the season’s most memorable melodies. MORE INFO

Make Your Own Dreidel
Weinberg Park Heights JCC
December 9, 2012
11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Kids can make their own dreidel plate at this special clay workshop in the glaze studio. MORE INFO

Hands On Holiday: Chanukkah!
Jewish Museum of Maryland
December 14, 2012
10:30 AM
Chanukkah celebrations with the JMM & DBJCC! Join us for a fun morning of crafts, songs, dancing and more with Ms. Melissa. Come and learn about the traditions of the holiday of lights! MORE INFO

Family Holiday Story Time and Tour
Mount Clare House
December 15, 2012
11:30 AM
Experience a colonial child’s Christmas. Families listen to a holiday story, enjoy a colonial snack and take a tour of the Carroll’s Mount Clare Mansion. $7 per person. Space limited. Reservations required by calling 410-837-3262 x 105. MORE INFO

Kiddie Crusoe
December 21, 2012  10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
December 21, 2012  5:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Santa Grinch will be coming down from Mount Crumpit to visit Kiddie Crusoe. Kiddies can visit with Santa Grinch, take pictures with him, enjoy a holiday craft, a special reading of The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, and have a Merry Grinch of a time. $10/member or $12/child MORE INFO

Peace, Love and JCC
Rosenbloom JCC
December 25, 2012
1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Get ready for some 60’s style family fun. Join us for games, entertainment, arts and crafts and a moonbounce! MORE INFO

Dragons and Dreidels – Christmas Day at the Jewish Museum of Maryland
Jewish Museum of Maryland
December 25, 2012
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Ever wonder why so many Jews eat Chinese food on Christmas?  Curious who General Tso really was?  Jennifer 8 Lee, author of The Fortune Cookie Chronicles, answers these questions and many more at a special talk at noon during the Jewish Museum of Maryland’s annual Christmas Day Chinese Food extravaganza.  Spend the rest of the day enjoying delicious kosher Chinese food, learning to play mahjong and making crafts. MORE INFO

Nicolo Whimsey Show
Creative Alliance
December 29, 2012
7:00 PM
Juggling! Fire! Musical Saw! Wild Woman Tug o’ War! A charming show full of improv, audience participation, live music, circus/vaudeville hi-jinks and double entendre jokes that work for kids and adults. Join in for the big Parade Around The Patterson. Wear a holiday hat & look your festive best! $12/adults, $7/kids under 12 MORE INFO

Noontime New Year Superhero Spectacular
Port Discovery
December 31, 2012
10:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Countdown to the New Year at 12 noon at Port Discovery! Kids can get in on the excitement of New Year’s Eve before bedtime at their Annual Noontime New Year featuring Eric Energy. Celebrate super heroes and super powers! Dress in your favorite costume. MORE INFO

Midnight Noon
Maryland Science Center
December 31, 2012
10 AM – 12:00 PM
Ring in the New Year at the Maryland Science Center! Or should we say, Noon Year? Join us for our 5th annual New Year’s Eve celebration, Midnight Noon , where children can enjoy the ball drop before bed time. MORE INFO