It’s that time of year! Our schedules are packed, we are running on empty but for most it’s the best time of year. There are hundreds of events near and far but I’m here to capture everything you need to know for November and December, local to us. (And maybe a few of my favorites outside our community)
Shop downtown Birmingham for special deals and enjoy the holiday atmosphere during Small Business Saturday! Enjoy free festivities throughout the day including Santa Walk, horse-drawn carriage rides, hot chocolate, a scavenger hunt (for your chance to win $250) and more. Parking is free in structures all day.
Saturday, November 27 / 9:30 AM
320 Martin Street
Join us as we welcome Santa to town! The walk begins at 320 Martin Street and continues through downtown, with stops at various shops, before concluding at Santa’s quaint home in Shain Park. Each family registered to participate in Santa Walk will have an opportunity to visit with Santa before appointments begin at noon. Registration opens November 1 at 8:00 AM.
BIRMINGHAM WINTER MARKT & HOLIDAY TREE LIGHTING
Friday, December 3 – Sunday, December 5, Shain Park
Market returns December 3 – 5 in Shain Park. Birmingham’s festive Winter Market features displays from local artists, European cuisine, thousands of lights, ice sculptures, live entertainment, kids activities, Santa visits and so much more!
The Holiday Tree Lighting will be held on Friday night at 6:00 PM.
SANTA HOUSE, CARRIAGE RIDES & REINDEER
Weekends / Shain Park
On weekends November 27 – December 24, all are invited to make an appointment to visit Santa* at Santa House, take a carriage ride around town and see live reindeer (select days).
*Appointments are required to visit Santa except during Winter Market (December 3-5), where visits are first come, first served. Register for Santa visits at ALLINBirmingham.com/events. Registration opens November 1 at 8:00 AM.
FREE Hot Chocolate Select Saturdays / Corner of Maple & Old Woodward Ave.
Shoppers will enjoy delicious complimentary refreshments, like hot chocolate and roasted chestnuts, throughout the holiday season.
Need to meet the Jolly old man, Santa himself? Here the the top places around town for your kids to hand over their list.
Saturday, November 27, 2021 through Christmas Eve (various dates)
Birmingham Christmas Events – Birmingham Santa House
Shain Park (S Bates St and W Merrill St, Birmingham, MI, 48009)
Children may give Santa their list and have their picture taken with him. A donation may be given to help a local charity.
Saturday, December 5, 2021 at Times TBA (2 Sessions to Choose From)
Birmingham Santa Claus Visits – BYA Breakfast with Santa
Townsend Hotel (100 Townsend St, Birmingham MI)
Hosted by Birmingham Youth Assistance. Crafts, entertainment, music and to visit with Santa. For cost info & to register, firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info, call 248-203-4300.
Sunday, December 15, 2019 from noon-1:30p (Currently TBD)
Birmingham Santa Claus – Tea with Santa (and Elsa & Anna)
Townsend Hotel (100 Townsend St, Birmingham MI) Enjoy a very special tea time with Santa, Elsa and Anna.
Bloomfield Hills Santa Claus Visits – Cranbrook Santa Sighting
Cranbrook House and Gardens (380 Lone Pine Road in Bloomfield Hills, MI, housegardens.cranbrook.edu)
Santa Claus is coming to Cranbrook House and your family can safely see him in this safe, outdoor event. Cranbrook House encourages you to wear your Santa hats or favorite holiday outfits and decorate your vehicle. Children will receive a gift from Santa and his helpers along the way. Pre-registration required. Call 248-645-3149 for ticket info and to reserve. Hosted by Cranbrook House & Gardens.
Saturday, December 4, 2021 from 11a-1:30p (half-hour sessions begin at 11a)
West Bloomfield Santa Claus – Letters to Santa
West Bloomfield Twp Recreation Activities Center (4640 Walnut Lake Road West Bloomfield, MI 48323 wbparks.org)
Meet Santa, give him your letter, take a family picture and he will have a cookie for you. Cost is per family. Choose from one of five timeslots. One adult needs to register for the event and then indicate how many children you are bringing when prompted. Any age welcome! Photos will be emailed within one week of the event. $15 per resident family/$17 per nonresident family. Online registration is available now.
Light up the holidays with a stroll or comfy car ride with these local light attractions with the family.
Starry Lights @ Ford House (Grosse Pointe)
Illuminate your holidays with Starry Lights, an all-new winter light walk at Ford House, including an immersive and interactive display on the grounds of the estate. Walk through the historic estate’s pathways to experience a wintry starry-sky-themed show of light and sound, featuring projected animations, interactive features, and even vintage home videos of Edsel and Eleanor Ford’s family.
Dates: November 18 – January 9
Wild Lights (Royal Oak):
The Detroit Zoo will be aglow for 40 magical nights with more than five million LED lights illuminating trees, buildings and over 280 sculptures throughout the front half of the Zoo. Experience the magic of the Detroit Zoo in winter as you take in the lights, sights and sounds of the season for guests of all ages.
Dates: November 20 – January 9
Admission: $17 – $24
Big Bright Light Show (Rochester):
You are invited to brighten your holidays in Downtown Rochester with The Big, Bright Light Show! The buildings in downtown Rochester will be covered with more than 1 million points of glimmering holiday light. The display will be lit every evening beginning 5pm.
Dates: November 20 – December 26
Winter Wonder Lights (Rochester)
Pairing indoor sights with outdoor lights, Meadow Brook is Michigan’s most dazzling holiday destination. Our two unforgettable holiday events will delight families, couples and people of all ages. Winter Wonder Lights transforms the estate at night into a breathtaking light show featuring music, concessions and magic.
Dates: November 26 to December 30
Admission: $12 – $22
Glenlore Trails Aurora (Commerce)
An immersive wintry experience for all ages. Visit Michigan’s original illuminated forest this holiday season! One mile outdoor path with interactive, story moments, and other entertainment. New features added regularly!
Dates: November 26 to January 2
Admission: $15 – $25
DETROIT TREE LIGHTING CEREMONY
Friday, November 19
@ Campus Martius, Detroit
The tree lighting ceremony will feature a Michigan-grown, 60-foot Norwegian Spruce wrapped in more than 19,000 multi-colored lights and ornaments. The event begins at 5 p.m. and is free to the public. Enjoy a magical evening of stage and rink performances to kick off the holiday season in the city.