10 U.S. Towns with Amazing Christmas Celebrations
Before Christmas holidays some of the cities in America turn into magic Wonderland, with millions of twinkling lights illuminating the streets. Their window displays, holiday markets, and beautifully decorated Christmas trees make these towns look like Christmas cards brought to life.
McAdenville, North Carolina
Located just 20 minutes away from Charlotte, McAdenville becomes Christmas Town USA each December. Not only does this small town change its name to get into the Christmas spirit but it gets decorated with over 450,000 lights. Thousands of people visit Christmas Town USA to gaze at the lights and stroll along the streets taking in the incredible beauty of the town. About 400 trees light the McAdenville's downtown, making it a great place for a winter walk. The nearby lake is another beautiful site, lined by over 30 trees that reflect the peaceful beauty in the water. The town's fountain is also a sight not to be missed, with a jet of water propelled up 75 feet, lit with bright colors every 10 seconds. Each night the first 1,000 visitors to Christmas Town USA receive free hot chocolate and kettle corn.
Koziar's Christmas Village, Bernville, Pennsylvania
Since 1948 Koziar's Christmas Village has been a popular town to visit on Christmas, with numerous families arriving there to see spectacular light displays, visit the small cottage dioramas and shops, as shake hands with Mr. Claus. Make sure you view the scenes depicting Christmas in Other Lands, Christmas Beneath the Sea and Christmas in the Jungle on display in former chicken coops.
Located southeast of Bernville Judy's on Cherry is a cozy restaurant offering New American favorites, including the hearth-fired pizzas like Exotic Mushroom Pizza.
Ogden's Christmas Village, Ogden, Utah
The country's major railway hub has a lot to offer to tourists who come to explore its downtown Christmas Village during the holiday season. A miniature Santa's North Pole Village with the 59 elf-sized themed cottages spring up in the middle of the town. They include The Elf Workshop, The Grinch, and Santa's Castle where kids can meet Santa in person. Kids can also have a ride on the free Polar Express Train through a tunnel decorated with holiday paintings.
A popular tourist' attraction is Union Station, the former train depot that was used as a key transcontinental railroad. Now the station houses three museums with trains, firearms, and automobiles exhibited on display.
Nevada City Victorian Christmas, California
Situated northeast of Sacramento, the quaint Nevada City organizes the annual Victorian Christmas festival that is visited by thousands of people each year. Nevada City used to be a Gold Rush town and it boasts a number of historic buildings set in mountainous environment, and a picturesque historic downtown. During the Christmas season Nevada City turns into a magic place lit by twinkling white lights and authentic gas lamps. During the festival carolers walk around dressed in Victorian garments, plus festival visitors are encouraged to dress in Victorian style clothes or wear period accessories like feathers, scarves, and top hats. Strolling along Nevada City downtown consider checking out My Favorite Things selling nice Christmas décor and crafts made by local artists.
Ozark Mountain Christmas, Branson, Missouri
To feel the festive Christmas spirit and celebrate the holiday in a setting surrounded by the best Christmas flare consider visiting the Ozark Mountain Christmas, the city of Branson in Missouri. There street lights on Main Street are wrapped in evergreen garland and the trees flicker with lights along the way. Branson boasts the reputation of the Live Music Show Capital of the World, with a number of events organized there, including Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede featuring snow, evergreens, and traditional holiday music.
Another event worth visiting during the winter holidays is Silver Dollar City's An Old Time Christmas festival, with unbelievable number of holiday lights and more than 1,000 decorated Christmas trees. Plus visitors can have lots of fun riding the park's award-winning roller coasters.
Georgetown Glow, Washington, D.C.
In December the oldest district of the American capital gets a festive look. Numerous holiday lights decorate the streets and historic buildings of Wisconsin Avenue NW during Georgetown Glow. With hundreds of stores, restaurants, and galleries, the neighborhood with yuletide holiday decorations becomes the hottest art and commerce venue.
Historic Zoar Village, Ohio
At the small town of Zoar, Ohio, with the population of just 169 people, you can experience an old-fashioned Christmas the way it was celebrated in the nineteenth century. The town located 40 miles south of Akron has lots of historic landmarks and buildings, decorated with evergreen garlands. Consider visiting blacksmith and tinsmith shops where you can see and buy a wide range of crafts and products made by local artisans. Take the Historic Zoar Village walking tour to learn about the history of the town and see numerous houses decorated for Christmas in old fashioned style. At the Zoar United Church of Christ you can hear Christmas carols performed on the chapel's original organ.
Located not far from Zoar is Canton's Classic Car Museum, displaying 45 antiques and rare cars, including a 1911 Model T Ford!
Wisconsin's Elkhart Lake Christmas, Wisconsin
Elkhart Lake, located an hour away from Milwaukee, is famous for its summertime racetrack. But in winter, Elkhart Lake becomes home to merry Christmas celebrations that include the renowned Old World Christmas Market. It looks similar to the Christkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg, Germany, with many local vendors offering crafts, art, and the traditional German food like schnitzel, sauerbraten and potato pancakes. For a truly unique Christmas atmosphere, make sure you stay at the Wade House, a local resort that entertains its guests with nineteenth-century Christmas celebrations, that include a ride in a horse-drawn carriage through the woods.
Genesee Country Village, Mumford, New York
The Genesee Country Village is proud of its annual Christmas celebrations. Join a walking tour to learn about the town history and traditions, as well as enjoy live music, dancing, and participate in tree lighting.
At Café Cibon in Rochester, located 25 minutes north of Mumford, you can feel warm and relaxed due to special winter cocktails. One of them is the Grand Slam which is popular during the winter time. It contains charcoal bourbon, maple whiskey, cardamom simple syrup, and egg white.
Charlottesville's Historic Downtown Mall, Charlottesville, Virginia
Charlottesville, home of Founding Fathers Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe, has been traditionally offering amazing presentations of holiday lights and events. The Christmas festivities are centered around Charlottesville's Historic Downtown Mall, which is considered the cultural hub of the city. During the holidays it becomes home to a holiday market, with about 100 local vendors selling their holiday crafts and goods. This is an excellent place to get the exclusive gifts for everyone in your family. To celebrate the nineteenth-century style Christmas consider visiting James and Dolley Madison's Montpelier estate, where you can have a candlelight tour of the estate, enjoy live holiday music, and see children's crafts.