Columbus is made up with so many amazing communities that have their own traditions and events for Christmas. No matter where you live, you’ll get into the holiday spirit at any of these FREE Community Tree Lightings and Holiday Celebrations in Columbus.
Nearly all of the events have been changed to a virtual format or virtual tree lighting. Watch the tree lightings online, and then check out the lights in person during the holiday season. The cancellation of community events greatly affects local businesses, so be sure to buy local and support your establishments in your community.
Note: Due to cases rising in Central Ohio, it is very likely some of these events will be cancelled or adapted even further in 2020. It’s important for you to check the organizers’ websites right before you plan to attend an event.
2020 Tree Lightings and Holiday Celebrations in Columbus
As typical in 2020, all events are subject to change or cancellation. Please check links before you plan to attend an event, and on the day of the event. Please follow all safety protocols for each event and stay home if you aren’t feeling well.
Santa arrives at Cabela’s (1650 Gemini Pl) on Saturday, November 7, at 5 pm to kick off the holiday season. Families can enjoy a socially distanced tailgate event in designated parking spots with a free outdoor parade featuring giveaways, Christmas carols, hot cocoa and magical fun building up to the arrival of the big guy himself.
Free Photos with Santa: Families who visit Santa receive a free 4×6 studio-quality photo, as well as a free digital download that can be shared on social media. Additional photo packages are also available for purchase and print instantly at the store. November 7 – December 24. Appointments are available online one week (7 days) in advance on a rolling basis.
Wednesday, November 18 at 5:30 pm. at the Mount St. Plaza. Enjoy hot cocoa and cookies by the fountain to enjoy the season. Masks and social distancing required.
Friday, November 20. No need to gather in a particular place for the lighting, as holiday magic will light up all over Easton at 7 pm. You can expect some seasonal surprises for the Easton Grand Illumination!
Shop and stroll through the sidewalks of Easton Town Center under 2 million twinkling lights. Town Square will be illuminated with the 50 foot tree featuring a 5 foot star. The Easton Holiday tree will light up every 15 minutes at the top of the hour from 5-11 pm every day beginning November 21.
November 21 – December 4. Visit Cheryl’s retail stores for the Holiday Preview event. Drop your letter to Santa in our North Pole mailbox and get a FREE cookie! Upgrade delivery of your letter to $5 and receive a sweet reply from Santa delivered to your home.
Raffles and sales on treats and gifts for the holidays include
- 20% off all holiday gifts. Order now and pick up or deliver later!
- SAVE on our pre-assorted Thanksgiving Cookie Box 48 cookies only $34.99, while supplies last!
- Adult Raffle: enter for a chance to win a NEW Holiday cookie jar and cookies
- Kids Raffle: enter for a chance to win a Musical Dancing Santa and cookies
Holiday Cheer starts at Polaris Fashion Place on Sunday, November 22 at 1:00 PM with the famous holiday kickoff parade at Polaris Fashion Place. Welcome Santa as he marches with the Worthington Kilbourne Marching Band and all your favorite costume characters. The parade will take place outdoors beginning at the Food Hall and ending at the Main Entrance.
Sunday, November 22, 2020. The Gahanna Holiday Lights Celebration will be a virtual event for 2020. Entertainment will begin at 6 pm, with the tree lighting at 6:30 pm. Santa will make an appearance. Follow along on Facebook for details.
Friday, November 27, 2020. Event will be live-streamed at 5:15 pm to prevent in-person gathering.
November 27, 2020 at 6pm. The beautiful historic 1876 Licking County Courthouse looks AMAZING all lit up, and courthouse square is filled with larger than life Christmas displays. The virtual Lighting Ceremony and the official start of the Christmas Holiday Season always takes place on the night after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 27, 2020. Join in the festivities on YouTube and Facebook to enjoy the annual holiday music program, the excitement of Santa’s arrival, and the lighting of the local landmark.
Though the season. Christmas on the Square cannot be safely held in 2020. Businesses in the Big Walnut area will decorate for all to enjoy for the holiday season.
They are asking everyone to shop local for the holidays, but especially on Shop Small Saturday on November 28. If you shop local Big Walnut businesses on the 28th, bring in your receipt to the Chamber office from November 30th – December 4th. You’ll receive a raffle ticket for a chance to win prizes from local businesses.
Opens the weekend after Thanksgiving through the first weekend of January. No light ceremony or choir performances for 2020.
Granville Village Tree Lighting: On Sunday, November 29, we will gather together to kick off the holiday season with the official lighting of the Granville Christmas Tree at 5:45 pm. The tree is located at the median on Broadway west of Main. Cookies and hot cocoa will be provided. There will also be a virtual option for those wishing to stay home. Follow the Facebook event page for changed and/or virtual option.
Christmas Candlelight Walking Tour: The annual Christmas Candlelight event will be held on Saturdays, December 5 and December 12, to reduce crowds. The event plans to feature streets lined with glimmering Christmas tree, Christmas Craft Market, Horse-drawn carriage rides, and more. Santa will cruise around the village neighborhoods early in the afternoon.
Due to the Stay-at-Home Advisory and extreme spread of COVID-19 in Franklin County, the Worthington Holiday Open House and Tree Lighting have been cancelled. Although this special event is no longer taking place, it is more important than ever that we support our local businesses during this challenging time. The Downtown area will be decorated, so make sure you visit through the season as you support local businesses.
Sunday, November 29, 2020. Enjoy carriage rides, live music, and Santa in Downtown Worthington. The City Holiday Tree will be lit each half-hour starting at 6:00 p.m. till 8:00 p.m. to space out crowds. The tree will be lit for 15 minute increments at 6:00, 6:30, 7:00, 7:30, and 8:00 pm. This will allow families to enjoy the tree lighting and take photos without large crowds.
Uptown Christmas Walk: Monday, November 30, 2020 from 5:00pm-8:00pm
Participating Uptown businesses will have special extended hours to help you get a start on your holiday shopping. Stop by for special deals and friendly faces! The MORA will be in effect, so grab a drink and mingle!
There will be no dance troupes, costume characters, carriage rides, live reindeer, or Christmas tree lighting as part of this event. Santa will have very limited availability. Those wishing to visit Santa must pre-register with the City of Marysville.
Christmas Tree Lighting: Tuesday, December 1, 2020 from 5:00pm-5:30pm
Partners Park, 125 E 6th St, Marysville, OH 43040, USA
The magic begins at dusk as the giant Christmas Tree at Partners Park is lit. Watch from the safety and comfort of your home as this event will be live-streamed on the City of Marysville’s Facebook page. No in-person event for 2020
Visit with Santa Claus: Thursdays and Saturdays in December
5:00pm-7:00pm on Thursdays, 10:00am – 12:00pm on Saturdays at Memorial Health Pavilion at Partners Park, 125 E 6th St, Marysville, OH 43040.
Visits with Santa Claus will be a little different this year to ensure health and safety for all. To prevent overcrowding and to enforce social distancing, online registration is required. To register, please visit the City of Marysville’s website.
Merry on Main Iceless Ice Skating: December 12 – January 3, 2021
A holiday favorite returns for another year! The Iceless Ice Rink is returning to the Memorial Health Pavilion at Partners Park. Daily hours vary and are tba. Face coverings required. Please visit the City of Marysville’s website for updates and hours.
Tuesday, December 1, 2020. The tree will be lit on that date at 7 pm but there is no tree lighting ceremony or gathering. Residents are asked to participate at home in the Be the Light in Grandview Heights to progressively light up the city from west to east.
Decorate your homes and flip your holiday lights at the times listed on the map at this link. Each section in the map will turn their lights on at an exact time in hopes to make Grandview Heights LIGHT UP. See lots of other holiday events in Grandview here!
Virtual Tree Lighting Ceremony: Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 6:30pm. Tune in to the City of Pickerington’s Facebook page for this year’s tree lighting ceremony.
21 Days of Lights: December 11-31, 2020. Make some memories with the kids! Load the family in the car and enjoy all the holiday lights as you drive around the historic Pickerington Village. No need to worry about social distancing with this event.
Pickerington Holiday Gathering: Cancelled for 2020
December 1-23, 2020. The season will be celebrated all season in Historic Dublin. Each day between Dec 3 – Dec 23, Historic Dublin will highlight a small business on the Facebook page; follow along for specials, giveaways, and more.
Holly Days Family Fun Saturdays. No Reservations required, free to the public. Characters will Be strolling the District. Social distance photos and interactions are welcomed. All events are subject to cancellation. Please check link to verify.
- Dec 5th 3:00-5:00pm- Who Day in Historic Dublin It’s the Grinch! Cindy Lou Who and more!
- Dec 12th 3:00-5:00pm Disney Holiday Extravaganza Starring Mickey, Minnie, Elsa and Olaf!
- Dec 19th 3:00-5:00pm Santa’s Family Christmas! See Santa, Mrs Claus, and Buddy the Elf too!
12 Elves of Dublin Scavenger Hunt: December 1 – December 23, 2020. Pick up your 12 elves card at one of the participating downtown locations, and then search through the shops of Historic Dublin to find the 12 Elves. When your kiddo finds the elf at each stop, have the entry card signed. Collect them all and return your completed card to one of the retailers. Grand Prize drawing will take place on December 29th
Thursday, December 4 at 7 p.m. Hop online to enjoy the Dublin’s virtual Tree Lighting, featuring Santa and other special guests, from the warmth of your home. A video of the Tree Lighting will be available to watch on the City’s website, Facebook page and YouTube channel.
Drive thru Coffman Park and see holidays displays with over 40,000 LED lights throughout the park and the City’s 30 foot illuminated tree from December 4-January 3.
Thursday, December 3 from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. This year, for the health and safety of participants and staff, the Ohio Statehouse Tree Lighting will take place online. Please check this webpage for updates about how to watch the 2020 virtual Tree Lighting.
December 5-11, 2020. Bexley Holiday Hop has switched to an all-online scavenger hunt for 2020. The annual Scavenger Hunt is back, reimagined for COVID safety! This 100% online, contact-free hunt is easy (and free)! Participants will answer scavenger hunt questions by visiting business websites. Fill in the correct answers and be entered to win! Winners will be chosen on Friday afternoon, and notified via social media. Those that live in 43209 can expect a special delivery on Saturday, December 12th.
More than 30 local businesses have donated to the prize pool, with over $1,500 in prizes available!
December 4-24, 2020 The Home for the Holidays season in Downtown Delaware features holiday decorations, local shopping, photos with Santa (RSVP required), Dash for Dasher Scavenger Hunt, Holiday Shop Hop, and more. The Main Street Delaware Tree is already lit, so there will be no tree lighting ceremony, carriage rides, or Christmas parade in 2020.
Saturday and Sunday, December 5-6, 2020 from 10 am – 5 pm. 5066 Keller Rd Hebron, OH
Admission is free. Get in the holiday spirit as you Christmas shop for handcrafted and unique items from more than 15 local vendors. Enjoy holiday treats like hot chocolate and kettle corn. Santa will be available for socially-distanced photos from 11 am – 3 pm for a small fee (details tba). Event is indoor/outdoor. Masks are required.
December 5. Santa, Mrs. Claus and their elves will travel through neighborhoods in Powell to wave at residents during the Porch Parade beginning at 3 p.m. The Powell Virtual Tree Lighting Ceremony is at 6 p.m. in Village Green Park and will be streamed live to the City’s Facebook page. The Delaware County-based Central Ohio Symphony’s Brass Quintet and the Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Powell are collaborating on a pre-recorded concert. The concert will premiere immediately following the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony. The concert will stream live on the City’s Facebook Page and website.
December 5-12. Shop sales and specials online to support local Clintonville businesses
Saturday, December 5 at 7 p.m. Join the virtual Grove City tree lighting event on Saturday, December 5, 2020, at 7 pm as part of the Grove City Christmas Celebration. Details for the lighting are tba.
The Heart of Grove City Mistletoe Market, Christmas Celebration and Grove City Community parade are canceled, watch for details on the Nutcracker Hunt, Phone Calls with Santa and Letters to Santa, a new Holiday Festival of Lights, the virtual community tree lighting or visit the Town Center Plaza during the Christmas season.
December 5. This favorite day of shopping in the district will continue virtually primarily via the @ShortNorthArtsDistrict Instagram Story, as well as on the Short North Arts District Facebook Page. Prefer to shop in person? Select art galleries and other businesses are open to the public, with many offering private appointments in addition to virtual options. Contact businesses directly to determine current operating hours and procedures.
Fairfield County Holiday Fun and Winter Fest
Winter Fest hasn’t been confirmed for 2020, but there are other holiday events you’ll want to enjoy throughout Lancaster and Fairfield County. More fun events are expected to be announced.
Lancaster Holiday Spirit Trail: Find the holiday spirit in Lancaster with app or links to holiday fun on the website. The Trail will last from Thanksgiving to New Years.
A Russian Christmas: From November 21 – January 8, the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio is exhibiting original Russian-made ornaments and decorations that reflect the Space Race of the 1960s. People can visit in-person or take a virtual tour.
Small Business Celebration Week is November 27 – December 5 in Downtown Lancaster. Many local shops will be offering discounts, coupons, and special deals, and will have extended shopping hours. See details here.
Fontanini Walk-Thru Nativity Display: Through December 28, from 6 pm – 9 pm, walk through a near life-size nativity display to experience the sights, sounds and even smells of the nativity. Crossroads Ministry Center
Hope for the Holidays Drive By Festival: December 3 – 31. Violet Springs Health Campus is hosting a Drive-By Festival with campus grounds donned with Christmas Trees, decorated by local businesses, churches, and other organizations. Everyone is invited to enjoy the trees & vote on a community favorite. This display will be open 24 hours a day beginning on December 3, 2020. 603 Diley Rd, Pickerington, OH 43147
Lancaster WinterFest & Tree Lighting: December 5 from 12 pm – 4:30 pm. Come celebrate the holiday season in the heart of downtown Lancaster. Enjoy going through our shops and restaurants with specials and giveaways from the downtown business owners.
Baltimore Holiday Market: December 5 from 2 – 6 pm. The Baltimore Farmers Market presents an outdoor social distanced, friendly holiday shopping with a Christmas atmosphere including lights and music. Craft vendors, food trucks, and a Christmas tree farm!
Saturday, December 5, 2020 from 2-4 pm. Make a $10 minimum donation per family to receive a bag with which you can walk between stops collecting your goodies. In order to keep crowds to a minimum, there will be 3 timeslots for tickets; 2 pm, 3 pm, and 4 pm. Each time slot is limited to 100 families each; two adults per family.
Tickets will go on sale on Monday, November 30 at 10am, the link to purchase tickets will be on our Main Street Christmas – Pataskala Facebook Page. Because it is a donation, the tickets are non-refundable. Masks and social distancing are required. No parade in 2020.
Sundays through December from 1 pm – 4 pm. Come visit The Hangar to shop the farm products and meet some of the animals, including some of my favorite yoga goats.
Sunday, December 6, 2020. The tree will still be lit at 8 p.m. and streamed live on Facebook. The public is invited to watch safely from home as City Council President Andy Teater lights the tree alongside Hilliard Division of Police Chaplain Corby LaCroix, who will give the invocation. See Facebook event page here for changes.
Note: drive through winter wonderland at Weaver Park in cancelled.
December 19-20: Santa Sightings in Hilliard. Santa and Mrs. Claus plan to drive safely through Hilliard this holiday season!
These special appearances will occur on four different routes throughout Hilliard on Saturday, December 19, and Sunday, December 20. Check our Facebook page for live tracking so you don’t miss the mini parade.
Please help us avoid crowds and keep everyone safe by joining us at the route that’s closest to your home. Spectators will have the opportunity to wave hello to a decorated Hilliard Police cruiser, Norwich fire truck, T-100.3 truck with holiday music, Santa, and Mrs. Claus.
Sunday, December 6, 2020. No downtown Santa Parade or Cookie Walk at the United Methodist Church in Johnstown. Santa will be escorted through neighborhoods in Johnstown to wave at the kids. There will be no gathering location for the event. Map will be published on the website closer to the event.
The historic streets of German Village will be lit up with Christmas spirit and holiday magic for Virtual Village Lights on Sunday, December 6, 2020 from 5-9 p.m. The Village is planning a virtual program to enjoy from the safety of your home.
December 11 at 5 pm. The traditional tree lighting under the clock will be streamed online, and Santa will drive through town to award prizes for the best Christmas decorations.
Thursday, September 23, 2021
Sunday, September 26, 2021
Thursday, September 30, 2021
Sunday, October 3, 2021
Tuesday, October 5, 2021
The following events are cancelled or tba for 2020
Holiday Bazaar and Deck the District Tree Lighting in the Short North: tba for 2020 from 11 am – 6 p.m. At the Holiday Bazaar, you can shop, eat, and explore pop-ups while enjoying holiday performers all along High Street, then end the day at the annual Deck the District Tree Lighting from 5:00pm to 6:00pm.
Prairie Township Tree Lighting: CANCELLED for 2020. Crowds will enjoy a musical program and participate in the countdown to light the tree. Santa Claus will make a special appearance as well!
Main Library Holiday Open House and Topiary Park Lighting Celebration: tba for 2020 Join us for hands-on activities, sing-along carols and meet a very Special Guest during Main Library’s Holiday Open House. Also, enjoy hot cocoa and cookies while visiting live reindeer and illuminated lanterns in Topiary Park! Indoor and outdoor activities are free and so is parking in Main Library’s garage and surrounding parking lots. Bring the whole family! Complimentary coat check and stroller parking offered.
Sparkle Night at The Shops at Worthington Place: tba for 2020. Holiday activities, Elf Hunt, cookie decorating, hot cocoa bar, special performances, character meet and greets and the very special arrival of SANTA in a mini parade led by Worthington Kilbourne Marching Band. Check the link for the huge schedule of events for the day.
Christmas at Lynd Fruit Farm: tba for 2020. The Christmas Shoppe will be open and we will be selling Christmas trees while available. Enjoy various holiday activities, including Santa, wagon rides, smores, music, and more. See Facebook for event schedule.
Holiday Tours at the John and Annie Glenn Museum: closed for 2020 from 5-8:30 p.m. Visit John Glenn’s boyhood home during the holiday season. Come and see what Christmas would have been like for a typical American family in 1962, the year John Glenn orbited Earth. John Glenn’s Lionel train will be running around the tree for all to enjoy and museum volunteers will be serving hot chocolate and cookies on the porch.
Free Festive Fridays at Columbus Commons: cancelled for 2020
Gateway’s annual tree lighting, “It’s Lit Actually”: No event for 2020 Join Middle West Spirits and WOW Internet, Cable & Phone for the annual celebration. The festivities kick off at 5:30pm with a performance by the Franklinton Preparatory Academy steel pan band, followed by the tree lighting at 6:30pm.
Stick around after the lights come on, grab some hot chocolate from Coffee Connections of Gateway or some seasonal #OYO cocktails from The District PourHouse, snap a selfie with your holiday honey under the Kissletoe gazebo, and snuggle up with friends and loved ones on the plaza for a screening of the holiday favorite LOVE ACTUALLY at 6:45 p.m. on our giant outdoor screen!
Upper Arlington Winter Festival and Tree Lighting: Cancelled for 2020. The area will be decorated for the holidays and you are welcome to visit and support local businesses in the area.
Caroling, carriage rides, bonfire with s’mores, visits with Santa and the tree lighting ceremony.
Christmas on the Towne in Reynoldsburg: Cancelled for 2020. Held the 1st Saturday of December to kick off the holiday season in Olde Towne Reynoldsburg. Local merchants open their shops with specials and give-aways for adults and kids alike. Visit with Santa Claus, stop by the Secret Santa Shop, enjoy a carriage ride through Olde Reynoldsburg, and sample many of the seasonal goodies that are offered throughout the day. Stick around the for the Lighting Ceremony and Parade (below).
Winterfest at Bicentennial Park: Cancelled for 2020 The celebration features live music, seasonal beer from local breweries, and Columbus food truck favorites. A portion of food truck and beer sales will be donated to the Mid-Ohio Food Bank.
Reynoldsburg Tree Lighting Ceremony and Parade: tba for 2020. Enjoy the holiday sights, sounds, and sensations with the holiday parade, caroling, crafts, letters to Santa and the lighting of the City tree. Parade will begin at 4:00 pm starting at Cypress Alley down Main Street through Old Reynoldsburg to City Hall. After the parade make your way to City Hall for photos with Santa and his elves. The City of Reynoldsburg’s Mayor will lead the community in lighting the City’s Christmas tree at 6:00 pm.
Christmas at the Coffman Homestead: Cancelled for 2020. See the historic Coffman House and Homestead for ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas at Coffman Homestead. Tour the 1860s era home dressed up with decorations created by The Muirfield Village Garden Club that will reflect the beloved poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. Enjoy musical entertainment, hot cider and cookies. Tickets are $5 and free for ages 5 and under. On both days, the barn will be open with a gaily-decorated sleigh offering a perfect spot for a photo.
Old Time Christmas at the Orange Johnson House: Closed for 2020. Enjoy federal-style tradition, light refreshments, and musical performances in the sitting room. Free admission with food donation to the Worthington Resource Pantry
Westerville Lions Children’s Christmas Parade: Cancelled for 2020. The Westerville Lions Club is proud to bring this long-standing tradition to the community! The Westerville Children’s Christmas parade will step off from State St. and Electric Ave. once the last walkers have made the half-way turn in the Rudolph Run/Walk 5K. The 2019 parade Grand Marshal is former Westerville mayor and city council member Diane Fosselman (now retired).
Christmas Parade in Delaware: Cancelled for 2020 The parade begins at Mingo Park (500 E Lincoln Ave.) Ends at Wilmer Street. The post office will be collecting Letters to Santa at the beginning of the parade!
Party at the North Pole: Cancelled for 2020 at Worthington Community Center. Annual Holiday Party with family friendly DJ, crafts, games and a visit from Santa.