When the temperatures go down and the winter jackets come out in Michigan, Greater Lansing is a great place to be. Some of the best and brightest events in the area take place during the holiday season, with residents and visitors from all over coming to take part. From beautiful light displays to theater and music performances to local shopping events and more, we’ve collected 14 things to do in Greater Lansing during the holiday season in 2018.
14 Things to Do in Greater Lansing During the Holiday Season in 2018
All Season Long
1. Michigan Made 2018 Holiday Exhibition
Every Tues - Saturday, November 6 - December 22, 2018
Lansing Art Gallery
119 N. Washington Sq. Lansing, MI
The Michigan Made Holiday Exhibition features a colorful collection of established and emerging Mid-Michigan artists at the Lansing Art Gallery. Running from the beginning of November until just before Christmas, this is a great place to enjoy a day of holiday shopping, while enjoying fantastic art and supporting local businesses and talent. The exhibit includes fine art as well as small gifts like jewelry, sculpture and pottery.
2. A Hunting Shack Christmas at Williamston Theatre
Every Thurs - Sunday, September 29 - Dec 23, 2018
122 S. Putnam St. Williamston, MI
From November through December, the Williamston Theatre will host a delightful holiday performance of A Hunting Shack Christmas. Exploring the complexities of family, love and loyalty with a uniquely Midwestern charm, A Hunting Shack Christmas is an authentic and cozy story that is perfect to get into the holiday spirit.
3. Wonderland of Lights
Every Thurs - Sunday until December 20, 2018
Potter Park Zoo
1301 S. Pennsylvania Ave. Lansing, MI
Time: 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Cost: Adults $7.00, children 3-12 $5.00, Children under 3 free
The beautiful light display illuminating Potter Park Zoo through November and December has become a favorite Greater Lansing holiday event among locals. The 24th annual Wonderland of Lights promises exceptional light displays, cookies, crafts and, of course, everyone’s favorite animals. Dress warm and turn a sleepy evening inside into a fun holiday-themed outing.
4. A Festival of Trees
Every Tuesday - Sunday until January 1, 2019
Turner-Dodge House and Heritage Center
100 E. North St. Lansing, MI
Time: 1:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Price: $5.00 for adults, children 12 and under are free
Christmas trees are one of the best signs of the approaching holidays, and a fun, nostalgic, beloved tradition for many. The Turner-Dodge House turns this family tradition into a beautiful holiday showcase with a collection of over 60 exquisitely decorated trees throughout the 3 floors. Bring your family, friends, or even schedule a group tour with 10 or more people to enjoy the dazzling decor. Please note, the Turner-Dodge House is closed on Mondays and holidays.
5. Silver Bells in the City
November 16, 2018
5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Silver Bells in the City is one of Greater Lansing’s most beloved events. This fun and festive holiday spectacle takes place in mid November to kick off the holiday season. Silver Bells in the City includes the lighting of the State Christmas Tree, the stunning Electric Light Parade, Silver Bells Village and festive music. This event is free, so pick out your spot and watch the Capital City’s holiday spirit shine.
6. Brunch with Santa
November 17th and 18th, 2018
111 E. Michigan Ave., Troppo, MI
Time: 8:00 AM - 1:30 PM
Bring your children and your inner child to visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus for breakfast or brunch at Troppo Italian Restaurant in Downtown Lansing. Kids can tell Santa their Christmas wishes, decorate cookies, write letters, make arts and crafts, and dig into a stack of hot pancakes.
7. Lansing Turkey Trot
November 22, 2018
Cost: Starting at $20
Work off your Thanksgiving turkey feast with the Lansing Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. Thousands of runners and walkers of all ages and skill levels take a brisk tour of Downtown Lansing during this event, taking in the holiday decorations, beautiful tree, and enjoying fun and community with friends, family and neighbors.
8. The Nutcracker
November 23 - November 25, 2018
Wharton Center for Performing Arts
750 E Shaw Ln Michigan State University East Lansing, MI
Times: Friday 7:30 PM, Saturday 7:30 PM, Sunday 2:00 PM
Cost: Starting at $22 for students/youth, $32 for adults
With beautiful music, elegant dancing, and a compelling story, the Nutcracker is a performance full of holiday magic. Performed by the Capital Ballet Theatre for the 38th year, this is one of the most beloved Greater Lansing holiday events. Whether you have seen the show before or you have never seen a ballet performance at all, you’ll be delighted by this stunning holiday tale.
9. Winter Glow
December 1, 2018
Downtown East Lansing
Time: 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM
East Lansing starts December with the Winter Glow festival and all of the best parts of the holiday season. This cozy Saturday afternoon in December you can enjoy carriage rides, roasted marshmallows and visits with Santa, as well as spectacular ice-carving demonstrations, music and a special holiday farmers market. With a sprinkle of snow, this event will be pure holiday magic.
10. Scrooge Scramble & Holiday Hullabaloo
December 1, 2018
Old Town, Lansing
1232 Turner St., Old Town Lansing, MI
Time: 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Lansing’s Old Town district starts out December with the exciting Scrooge Scramble and the festive Holiday Hullabaloo. Join over 400 runners in the Scrooge Scramble 5K and take in all of the landmarks and sights throughout Old Town. Those preferring a more laid-back afternoon can take a tour of Old Town’s many homegrown shops, restaurants, bars and galleries for a day of shopping and snacking. Visit with Santa, enjoy plenty of treats along the way, try arts and crafts, and find gifts for everyone on your list.
11. MSU Arts & Crafts Holiday Show
December 1 and 2, 2018
Abbot Rd. & Grand River Ave. East Lansing, MI
Time: Saturday 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Sunday 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
The MSU Arts & Crafts Holiday Show brings together established and emerging artists and artisans of all types to one fun and festive holiday marketplace. Support local businesses and vendors while finding exceptional handmade goods to start or complete your holiday shopping. With four floors full of candles, furniture, jewelry, decor, clothing, toys, paintings, photography, sculpture, pottery and much more, you can find something for everyone on your list.
12. Winter Wine & Stein
December 5, 2018
Potter Park Zoo
1301 S. Pennsylvania Ave., Potter Park Zoo, MI
Time: 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Potter Park Zoo’s Winter Wine & Stein is the perfect date night for foodies, animal-lovers, and anyone who loves the holidays. This 21 and up event features beer and wine tastings, delicious hors d’oeuvres from local eateries, and festive holiday music. This event is ideal for adults looking to make the zoo’s annual Wonderland of Lights display extra special.
13. Holiday Open House
December 6, 2018
MSU Horticulture Gardens, MI
1066 Bogue St. East Lansing, MI
Time: Noon - 7:30 PM
For many, winter means dormant gardens and drab landscapes, but not at the MSU horticulture gardens. The Holiday Open House at the horticulture gardens puts holiday colors on full display for all to enjoy. From the 16-foot-fall poinsettia tree, glittering light displays, elegant wreaths and lush indoor gardens, this event is sure to lift your spirits. Bring your children for an evening out with the family—Santa arrives at 5:30!
14. Lansing Symphony: Holiday Pops
December 16, 2018
Wharton Center for Performing Arts
750 E Shaw Ln East Lansing, MI
3:00 PM to 05:00 PM
Price: $20 - $55
For many, music is what makes the holidays truly the Most Wonderful Time of the Year. From beloved Christmas sing-alongs to magical choral masterpieces to striking classical symphonic pieces, holiday music truly has something for everyone. The Lansing Symphony and MSU Youth Chorale put the joy and love of the holiday season into each song in the Holiday Pops performance.
Fom music to art to food to outdoor activity, Greater Lansing has something to delight all your senses during the holiday season. To beat the winter blues and get the most out of this fun and festive time of year, plan to take part in these 14 things to do in Greater Lansing during the holidays in 2018!
Free Download: Everything You Need to Know About Moving to Greater Lansing
Find your ideal neighborhood in the Greater Lansing area.
Get the Guide »