Families don’t have to wait until December 25 to enjoy all the Christmas fun. These holiday happenings will make you feel the spirit, all December long! Writer Jamie Lober shares some suggestions:
Holiday Cruises on the General Jackson Showboat. Enjoy a truly authentic celebration with accomplished country musicians and delicious dining during the Music City Christmas Evening Cruise. If you prefer, you can revel in a high-spirited holiday cruise during the day on the Christmas Traditions Midday Cruise. You may catch yourself singing along to some Christmas classics by Nat King Cole or Mariah Carey or dancing to Broadway tunes. The grandeur of the showboat will make you feel like you took a step back into history. 2812 Opryland Dr. Nashville, TN 37214. (615)458-3900. www.generaljackson.com.
Nashville Ballet. Nashville’s Nutcracker ushers in the season of joy and giving from Saturday, December 1 through Sunday, December 23. Take the wonder of this classic holiday tale and merge it with the city’s shining history to create a show to remember. The music and choreography will leave you feeling spellbound as you embark on a magical journey. TPAC’s Jackson Hall, 505 Deaderick St. Nashville, TN 37243. (615)297-2966. www.nashvilleballet.com.
Belmont Mansion. Daily house tours are available at this stately gem from November 23 through December 31. Start your day bright and early on Saturday, December 8 with Noel, Notes and Nibbles. You can enjoy light breakfast bites and musical entertainment as you bask in the Victorian mansion. On December 10 you can check out Camerata Christmas, a musical celebration that is free and open to the public. On the evenings of December 20 and 21 you can sit back and watch performers Ginger Newman and Russell Davis put on the cabaret show Mistletoe, Mischief and Memories in the Grand Salon. 1700 Acklen Ave. Nashville, TN 37212. (615)460-5459. www.belmontmansion.com.
Chaffin’s Barn Theater. Check out this freshly renovated venue. Choose between Elf, The Musical; The Game Show: Holiday Edition and All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth. Experience the ambiance of Nashville’s original barn and most original dining and theater extravaganza. 8204 Highway 100 Nashville, TN 37221. (615)646-9977 for tickets. https://dinnertheatre.com.
Cheekwood Estate & Gardens. Prepare for an evening to remember. November 23 through December 30, 7 nights a week you can savor the holiday cheer as you stroll through one million lights illuminating this pretty 55-acre botanical garden. On the property of this cultural attraction estate there is also an art museum which was the original home of Leslie and Mabel Cheek in 1929. 1200 Forrest Park Dr. Nashville, TN 37205. (615)356-8000. https://cheekwood.org/calendar/holiday-lights.
Nashville Christmas Parade. Mark your calendar for December 1 at 8:30am so you can be at the corner of North 1st St. and Brandon St. to kick off this year’s parade. You can expect extravagant floats and great performers. Hosted by The Westin, this signature event has been part of the city’s festivities for almost a century. Reserve your seat early as it is sure to be a sellout. All proceeds support Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Nashvillechristmasparade.com.
Gaylord Opryland Resort. The fun never ends at this famous country Christmas. You will find over 3 million lights on this property and events galore. You can choose from Cirque Dreams Holidaze, Ice! featuring Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas, a Trace Adkin’s performance, snow tubing, glacier glide ice skating and rides for those seeking a little more adventure. You can even pack a bag and plan your own staycation. 2800 Opryland Dr. Nashville, TN 37214. (615)889-1000.
Santa’s Christmas Trees. The holiday would not be complete without experiencing the fun of picking out your very own fresh Fraser Fir tree. If you really want to accessorize there are decorative wreaths and garlands available for all to cherish. There are many locations to choose from throughout Davidson County. Delivery can be arranged for your convenience. 2501 12th Ave. South Nashville, TN 27204. (615)467-4001. www.pickyourownchristmastree.org.
Music City Winterfest. Bring friends and family to Centennial Park on December 8 and 9 to get into the spirit of the most wonderful time of the year. You can plan to attend breakfast with Santa to bring out your inner child with crafts, live entertainment, photos with Santa and of course great food and goodie bags for kids. Adults may prefer the onesie brunch where you can wear your favorite pajamas as you sip on cocktails and jam to live entertainment. The holiday market at Winterfest will provide unique gifts for your entire shopping list. 2500 W. End Ave. Nashville, TN 37203. www.musiccitywinterfest.com.
SantaCon. Put on your party hats for a night out on the town on Saturday, December 8. Usher in the holidays at some of the best pubs in Nashville while in your best Santa attire. Upon registration you will be given an official wristband and map guiding you to the hot spots and providing generous discounts. www.nashvillesantacon.com.