Phew! We have been on a tear through holiday events this year. And while some get rounded up into weekend recaps, I wanted to give you a rundown on some of the others for both kids and adults.
One of our favorite holiday traditions is Country Lights at the Lake Metroparks Farmpark. This event incorporates so many different fun holiday activities from a wagon ride through extensive outdoor light displays…
…to model train displays in winter wonderland scenes…
…to cookie decorating (SO much frosting)…
…to Santa’s toy workshop. The workshop is by far my favorite part of Country Lights. Staffed entirely by volunteers, the elves help your child build and decorate a wooden toy of their choosing.
It’s such a neat, hands-on experience for the kids. And the workshop looks like I imagine Santa’s workshop would, with snow and singing and loads of glitter.
Country Lights is sold out for 2017, but definitely put it on your holiday list for 2018!
The Polar Express
I try not to play absolute favorites among holiday events, but The Polar Express on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad might be #1 for me. The ride brings the story from the book and movie to life. It is heart-warming and fun and everything you could want from a holiday event.
Each train car has an elf and a conductor who make the magical story of “The Polar Express” come to life. On your way to The North Pole (AKA Peninsula during the rest of the year), you hear the story of “The Polar Express,” drink hot chocolate, and eat cookies, in your PJ’s of course.
When you reach the decked-out North Pole, you are greeted by a cavalry of (volunteer) elves, reindeer, and other Christmas characters.
Santa boards the train here and visits with each child on the way back home, gifting magic bells to the kids too.
Jeffrey told me he could hear the bell ringing because he believes in Santa! It doesn’t get more magical than that!
On your return trip, you also sing carols and just generally arrive back home in the most festive mood you could imagine.
The Polar Express is sold out for 2017, but definitely put it on your holiday list for 2018.
Holidays in the Caribbean
On one of the coldest, windiest days of the year thus far, members and friends of Playhouse Square Partners were feeling quite tropical at our Holidays in the Caribbean happy hour at Margaritaville Cleveland.
We had the entire “5 o’clock Somewhere” bar area to ourselves to enjoy boat drinks and munchies and beachy tunes. We also each got a lei to add to our festive ugly sweater attire!
And my gift exchange gift seems particularly spot on, especially given that the theme of our upcoming Jump Back Ball is “2018: A Space Odyssey!”
Margaritaville was the perfect place to celebrate the holidays and dream of warmer days ahead!
Ugly Holiday Sweater Bar Hop
Imagine lots of people dressed up in their most, ahem, festive attire, heading from bar to bar at Legacy Village. Add in pictures with Santa, fun decorations, and a treat bag that included an insulated “Solo cup,” red and green sunglasses, and a jingle bell necklace.
The Ugly Holiday Sweater Bar Hop was fun and festive! It also definitely got you chatting with your fellow hoppers, as you compared attire (fashion note: holiday llama sweaters are big this year).
Various bars at Legacy Village offered discounted food and drink specials for the evening. Some of our favorites were the Candy Cane martini from The Melting Pot…
…the calamari and specialty martinis from Bar Louie…
…and the yummy pork nachos and “Jingle Bell Juice” (bourbon and blood orange) at Granite City Food and Brewery.
All this festive hopping was for a good cause, as a portion of proceeds benefitted the American Cancer Society. Cheers!
What holiday events have you been enjoying this season?
***Disclosure: I am the co-chair of Playhouse Square Partners. I was asked by Playhouse Square to help promote Jump Back Ball and will receive two complimentary VIP tickets for the event. I also have an ongoing relationship with Legacy Village to promote their events, for which I receive compensation in the form of Legacy Village gift cards. I purchased my own tickets to the Ugly Holiday Sweater Bar Hop.***