What Should We Do This Weekend? Columbus, Ohio, December 7-9, 2018

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Looking for things to do in Columbus, Ohio this weekend? Here are over 100 family-friendly events happening in Columbus, and Central Ohio this weekend!

Family Friendly Events in Columbus Ohio This Weekend:

FRIDAY

9:00 AM – Family Gingerbread House Decorating at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – families can decorate a gingerbread house together! Everything you need will be provided in the cost. 

10:00 AM – Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory – visit the Conservatory while it’s decked out for the season! Enjoy special performances and activities and this year the event extends into the Children’s Garden!

10:00 AM – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

10:00 AM – Forest Fridays at Sunbury Urban Farm – kids can make holiday decorations out of items found in nature! Recommended for ages 2-5. $5 suggested donation.

10:00 AM – Santa Photos at Easton Town Center – get your family’s picture with Santa between 10:00 AM and 9:00 PM (with 2 break periods (see link)). Get a professional 5×7 for $5 or take a photo with your own camera. Reservations are available!

10:30 AM – Our Village Playdate & Craft: Letters for Santa with FIT4MOM Upper Arlington – enjoy an exercise class with your kids and stay after for a playdate where kids can write and mail a letter to Santa. The playdate is free. (Bring a stamp!)

10:30 AM – Christmas Lights Chalk Stencil with FIT4MOM Dublin – kids can make stencil Christmas lights with chalk! 

11:30 AM – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

5:00 PM – Olde Village Holiday Gathering in Olde Village Pickerington – this event includes a tree lighting ceremony at 7:00 PM, games, carriage rides, luminaries, carolers, shopping and a visit from Santa!

5:00 PM – Festive Fridays at Columbus Commons – Friday nights at Columbus Commons include free hot chocolate and carousel rides! There will also be live music! Share your pictures with #CCHolidayLights!

5:00 PM – Pickerington Holiday Gathering – this annual event includes a tree lighting, pictures with Santa, ice carving, a reindeer petting area, cookie decorating, strolling carolers and much, much more!

5:00 PM – Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo – Wildlights is included in your admission (or membership) to the Zoo and features special activities, amazing lights, light shows, Rudolph and friends in Asia Quest, Santa’s Holiday Home in the Battelle Ice Bear Outpost, Jingle Ball light display and much more!

5:00 PM – 12 Days of KidX at Polaris Fashion Place – 12 Days of KidX includes activities and crafts for kids and today there will be carolers near the Santa set!

5:30 PM – Dragon Lights Columbus – walk through amazing Chinese light sculptures and interactive light displays, enjoy cultural performances, food and shopping.

5:30 PM – Holiday Market at Aladdin Temple – this holiday market will include a story time for the kids, photos with Santa, a hot chocolate bar and a build your own pancake bar on Saturday morning. 

6:00 PM – Christmas in the Village 2018 in the City of Canal Winchester – this event takes place on Friday and Saturday nights and includes activities on the sidewalks and streets of downtown Canal Winchester. There will be a tree lighting, visits with Santa, a Christmas Trolley, ice sculptures, popcorn, hayrides, games, crafts and more! See the link for events that will happen only on Friday or Saturday.

6:00 PM – Holiday Carriage Rides at Easton Town Center – carriage rides are available every weekend through December 23 for $10/person. Children under 15 are free with a paying adult. Get on the carriage outside of Zara on Gramercy Street. Hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM and Sundays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM.

6:00 PM – Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides in Main Street Delaware, Inc. – free horse drawn carriage rides will be given around downtown Delaware.

6:00 PM – Whitehall Wonderland in City of Whitehall City Hall – this event includes a tree lighting, crafts for kids, letters to Santa, cooking decorating and a showing of The Polar Express!

6:30 PM – Family Night Out at Goldfish Swim School – enjoy an open swim in 90 degree water at all Goldfish Swim School locations! Cost for non-members is $5/person or $15/family. First come first served!

6:30 PM – Owl Prowl in Gallant Woods Park – take a night hike to look for owls! Recommended for ages 7 and up.

6:30 PM – Kids Night Out! at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – drop your kids off for a hands on cooking experience! For ages 5 and up. 

6:30 PM – Friday! Parents Night Out at Picassos – drop your kids off for a night of making art! Ages 5 and up.

7:00 PM – CS Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe at the McConnell Arts Center – take a trip to the land of Narnia in this performance by Worthington Community Theatre.

7:30 PM – The Nutcracker at Ohio Theatre – enjoy a festive performance of this holiday classic with BalletMet. This is a two act performance with an intermission.

7:30 PM – The Polar Express Movie Weekends at COSI Columbus’ Dynamic Hands-On Science Center! – watch The Polar Express on the Giant Screen Theater and enjoy cookies, hot chocolate and other surprises! The Polar Express Live Science Show will start 30 minutes before each showtime.

SATURDAY

8:00 AM – Holiday Character Breakfast sponsored by Meijer at New Life Church – this annual event includes a catch-a-flying pancake breakfast, a performance by Columbus Children’s Theatre, face painting, crafts, a story time and breakfast with characters! Tickets are required.

8:00 AM – Holiday Market at Aladdin Temple – this holiday market will include a story time for the kids, photos with Santa, a hot chocolate bar and a build your own pancake bar on Saturday morning. 

8:30 AM – Breakfast with Santa at Rusty Bucket Restaurant and Tavern – enjoy a special breakfast with Santa. $5/person and proceeds benefit local causes. Make you reservation online. 

9:00 AM – Breakfast with Santa at Polaris Fashion Place – have breakfast with Santa catered by California Pizza Kitchen! Register at the Mall Management Office.

9:00 AM – Family Gingerbread House Decorating at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – families can decorate a gingerbread house together! Everything you need will be provided in the cost. 

9:00 AM – Hilliard YMCA Annual Breakfast With Santa – this event includes breakfast and photos with Santa! Register in advance.

9:00 AM – Breakfast with Santa at North YMCA – this breakfast includes pancakes, a hot chocolate bar, making cookies with the Grinch, pictures with santa, crafts and games! Register in advance.

9:00 AM – Kids Clay Saturdays – Coil Winter Holiday Trees at Picktown Arts with Ellie Mescher-Miller – kids can learn how to make a holiday tree out of clay! Recommended for ages 4 and up. Register online.

9:00 AM – Christmas In The Garden at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center – each weekend in December you can shop for a Christmas tree and other gifts while enjoying cookies and hot chocolate. There will also be ornament painting!

9:00 AM – Breakfast & Santa Visit at Nutcracker Family Restaurant – enjoy breakfast with Santa and a kids activity! 

9:00 AM – Cookies with Santa! at Mrs. Goodman’s Baking Co. – visit with Santa at Mrs. Goodman’s Baking Co!

9:00 AM – Breakfast with Santa at Chick-Fil-A Sawmill – Santa will be coming for breakfast and complimentary pictures will be provided! Reservations required.

9:00 AM – Breakfast with Santa and Santa Cow at Chick-fil-A at Grandview Yard – meet Santa and Santa Cow at this special event! There will be hot chocolate provided and you can purchase breakfast until 10:30 AM.

9:00 AM – Visit with Santa at Ohio Herb Education Center – visit with Santa, write a letter to Santa, make and take gifts in Mrs. Claus’ parlor. $5/craft or photo.

9:30 AM – Project SKD with See Kids Dream – families can work together to make a blanket that will be donated to families in need. Register in advance to receive a discussion activity to complete before you arrive. This is a free event. Register in advance.

9:30 AM – The Polar Express Movie Weekends at COSI Columbus’ Dynamic Hands-On Science Center! – watch The Polar Express on the Giant Screen Theater and enjoy cookies, hot chocolate and other surprises! The Polar Express Live Science Show will start 30 minutes before each showtime.

9:30 AM – Saturday Studio Art: Cuddly Snowman Painting at Art with Anna – drop off your kids to make a snowman painting. Ages 4 and up. $20/student.

10:00 AM – Car Seat Safety Check with Columbus Public Health at Germain Toyota of Columbus – get your car seat checked or installed for free during this safety check. No appointment necessary.

10:00 AM – The Polar Express – PJ Party & Hot Cocoa at Drexel Theatre – wear your PJ’s and watch The Polar Express! this event includes a hot cocoa bar!

10:00 AM – Storytime at Grange Insurance Audubon Center – enjoy a nature themed story time for preschoolers!

10:00 AM – Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory – visit the Conservatory while it’s decked out for the season! Enjoy special performances and activities and this year the event extends into the Children’s Garden!

10:00 AM – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

10:00 AM – Santa Photos at Easton Town Center – get your family’s picture with Santa between 10:00 AM and 9:00 PM (with 2 break periods (see link)). Get a professional 5×7 for $5 or take a photo with your own camera. Reservations are available!

10:00 AM – Nature Playdates at Sunbury Urban Farm – kids can make a holiday craft out of materials found in nature.

10:30 AM – Our Village Playdate & Craft: Letters for Santa with FIT4MOM Upper Arlington – enjoy an exercise class with your kids and stay after for a playdate where kids can write and mail a letter to Santa. The playdate is free. (Bring a stamp!)

10:30 AM – December Grown-Up & Me Art: Holiday Wreath at Art with Anna – make a holiday wreath with your child. $15/couple.

11:00 AM – Santa Claus at Third Way Cafe! – visit with Santa and grab a cup of coffee or a baked good!

11:00 AM – Paint A Gingerbread House-Kid Friendly Workshop at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center – kids can paint a wooden gingerbread house! $20 includes supplies, snacks and beverages. Reservations recommended. 

11:30 AM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

12:00 PM – Christmas Story time with Elsa & Anna! at Barnes & Noble Polaris – meet and greet Elsa and Anna and enjoy a story time!

12:00 PM – Visit with Santa at The Shops at Worthington Place – get your picture taken with Santa!

12:00 PM – Kids Christmas at the Market at Lynd Fruit Farm – meet Santa, do a take home craft, enjoy food trucks and lots of Christmas goodies to purchase in the shop.

1:00 PM – The Nutcracker at Ohio Theatre – enjoy a festive performance of this holiday classic with BalletMet. This is a two act performance with an intermission.

1:00 PM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

2:00 PM – Christmas Ornaments. $5.00 Each at AR Workshop Grove City – drop in to make a Christmas ornament! $5/each.

2:00 PM – CS Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe at the McConnell Arts Center – take a trip to the land of Narnia in this performance by Worthington Community Theatre.

2:00 PM – Coloring and Cookies! at at the Sycamore Plaza Library – all ages welcome to color and enjoy cookies!

3:30 PM – The Polar Express Movie Weekends at COSI Columbus’ Dynamic Hands-On Science Center! – watch The Polar Express on the Giant Screen Theater and enjoy cookies, hot chocolate and other surprises! The Polar Express Live Science Show will start 30 minutes before each showtime.

4:00 PM – Santa & Painting at Aprons and Easels – meet Santa and take photos! Get a signed ornament by Santa and make a holiday craft with the family.

5:00 PM – Complimentary Holiday Photos at Easton Town Center – get a complimentary professional photo at the Central Park Fountain.

5:00 PM – Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo – Wildlights is included in your admission (or membership) to the Zoo and features special activities, amazing lights, light shows, Rudolph and friends in Asia Quest, Santa’s Holiday Home in the Battelle Ice Bear Outpost, Jingle Ball light display and much more!

5:00 PM – Christmas in the Village 2018 in the City of Canal Winchester – this event takes place on Friday and Saturday nights and includes activities on the sidewalks and streets of downtown Canal Winchester. There will be a tree lighting, visits with Santa, a Christmas Trolley, ice sculptures, popcorn, hayrides, games, crafts and more! See the link for events that will happen only on Friday or Saturday.

5:30 PM – Dickens of a Christmas at Ohio Village – enjoy a 19th century holiday celebration in the spirit of Charles Dickens. There will be characters from A Christmas Carol, Santa Claus, holiday crafts, carolers, and more!

5:30 PM – The Nutcracker at Ohio Theatre – enjoy a festive performance of this holiday classic with BalletMet. This is a two act performance with an intermission.

5:30 PM – Dragon Lights Columbus – walk through amazing Chinese light sculptures and interactive light displays, enjoy cultural performances, food and shopping.

6:00 PM – Holiday Carriage Rides at Easton Town Center – carriage rides are available every weekend through December 23 for $10/person. Children under 15 are free with a paying adult. Get on the carriage outside of Zara on Gramercy Street. Hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM and Sundays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM.

6:30 PM – Holiday Family Paint Night at New Beginnings Church – families can work together to paint a holiday-themed masterpiece! Snacks and drinks are included. Ages 5 and up. Register in advance.

7:00 PM – CS Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe at the McConnell Arts Center – take a trip to the land of Narnia in this performance by Worthington Community Theatre.

SUNDAY

9:00 AM – Family Gingerbread House Decorating at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – families can decorate a gingerbread house together! Everything you need will be provided in the cost. 

9:00 AM – Sensitive Santa at Polaris Fashion Place – visit Santa in a sensory-friendly environment. Registration is recommended but not required.

9:30 AM – The Polar Express Movie Weekends at COSI Columbus’ Dynamic Hands-On Science Center! – watch The Polar Express on the Giant Screen Theater and enjoy cookies, hot chocolate and other surprises! The Polar Express Live Science Show will start 30 minutes before each showtime.

10:00 AM – Christmas In The Garden at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center – each weekend in December you can shop for a Christmas tree and other gifts while enjoying cookies and hot chocolate. There will also be ornament painting!

10:00 AM – Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory – visit the Conservatory while it’s decked out for the season! Enjoy special performances and activities and this year the event extends into the Children’s Garden!

11:00 AM – Pictures with Santa Claus at Tractor Supply Co., Pickerington – your family and your pet can have your picture taken with Santa! $!0/picture. Frame included.

11:00 AM – Santa Photos at Easton Town Center – get your family’s picture with Santa between 10:00 AM and 9:00 PM (with 2 break periods (see link)). Get a professional 5×7 for $5 or take a photo with your own camera. Reservations are available!

12:00 PM – 2nd Sundays at Ohio Wildlife Center – visit Ohio Wildlife Center to meet the animals and do an animal enrichment activity! $5/person. Kids 5 and under are free.

12:00 PM – Visit with Santa at The Shops at Worthington Place – get your picture taken with Santa!

12:00 PM – Dickens of a Christmas at Ohio Village – enjoy a 19th century holiday celebration in the spirit of Charles Dickens. There will be characters from A Christmas Carol, Santa Claus, holiday crafts, carolers, and more!

12:00 PM – Big Bang Family Holiday Show with Santa! at Big Bang Columbus – this event includes dueling pianos, face painting, cookie decorating, holiday crafts and a visit from Santa. Admission is free with a donation of a new, unwrapped toy for Nationwide Children’s Foundation or $10/adult or $6/child. Kids under 3 are free.

1:00 PM – The Nutcracker at Ohio Theatre – enjoy a festive performance of this holiday classic with BalletMet. This is a two act performance with an intermission.

1:00 PM – One Stop Santa Shop at The Farm Table on 62  – kids can participate in a Santa’s Secret Workshop to pick out a gift for special people in their lives. Adults will enjoy drinks and refreshments in the main shop while kids shop in the workshop.

 1:00 PM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

1:00 PM – Santa & Painting at Aprons and Easels – meet Santa and take photos! Get a signed ornament by Santa and make a holiday craft with the family.

2:00 PM – CS Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe at the McConnell Arts Center – take a trip to the land of Narnia in this performance by Worthington Community Theatre.

2:00 PM – The Polar Express – PJ Party & Hot Cocoa at Drexel Theatre – wear your PJ’s and watch The Polar Express! this event includes a hot cocoa bar!

2:30 PM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

3:00 PM – Holiday Carriage Rides at Easton Town Center – carriage rides are available every weekend through December 23 for $10/person. Children under 15 are free with a paying adult. Get on the carriage outside of Zara on Gramercy Street. Hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM and Sundays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM.

3:00 PM – Santa in the Red Caboose at Weaver Park – visit with Santa and enjoy free treats!

3:30 PM – December Family Paint: Snowy Swing at Art with Anna – families can come together to paint a snowy swing! $15/artist. Ages 6 and up.

3:30 PM – The Polar Express Movie Weekends at COSI Columbus’ Dynamic Hands-On Science Center! – watch The Polar Express on the Giant Screen Theater and enjoy cookies, hot chocolate and other surprises! The Polar Express Live Science Show will start 30 minutes before each showtime.

5:00 PM – Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo – Wildlights is included in your admission (or membership) to the Zoo and features special activities, amazing lights, light shows, Rudolph and friends in Asia Quest, Santa’s Holiday Home in the Battelle Ice Bear Outpost, Jingle Ball light display and much more!

5:30 PM – Dragon Lights Columbus – walk through amazing Chinese light sculptures and interactive light displays, enjoy cultural performances, food and shopping.

5:30 PM – The Nutcracker at Ohio Theatre – enjoy a festive performance of this holiday classic with BalletMet. This is a two act performance with an intermission.

6:00 PM – 2018 Christmas Tree Lighting at Whetstone Recreation & Parks – this event includes visits with Santa, games, crafts, music and caroling! 


 Want to sponsor What Should We Do This Weekend? Click here.

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*Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead or check links to confirm activities.  Enjoy what you do today!*

ICYMI: 10 of our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions


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What Should We Do This Weekend? Columbus, Ohio, November 30 – December 2, 2018

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Looking for things to do in Columbus, Ohio this weekend? Here are over 80 family-friendly events happening in Columbus, and Central Ohio this weekend!

Family Friendly Events in Columbus Ohio This Weekend:

FRIDAY

9:00 AM – Family Gingerbread House Decorating at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – families can decorate a gingerbread house together! Everything you need will be provided in the cost. 

10:00 AM – Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory – visit the Conservatory while it’s decked out for the season! Enjoy special performances and activities and this year the event extends into the Children’s Garden!

10:00 AM – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

10:00 AM – Santa Photos at Easton Town Center – get your family’s picture with Santa between 10:00 AM and 9:00 PM (with 2 break periods (see link)). Get a professional 5×7 for $5 or take a photo with your own camera. Reservations are available!

11:30 AM – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

5:00 PM – Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo – Wildlights is included in your admission (or membership) to the Zoo and features special activities, amazing lights, light shows, Rudolph and friends in Asia Quest, Santa’s Holiday Home in the Battelle Ice Bear Outpost, Jingle Ball light display and much more!

5:30 PM – Parents Night Out at Tree of Life Play + Cafe Drop the kids off for open play and dinner! Open to kids who are potty trained up through age 12. Register online.

5:30 PM – Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights at Alum Creek Campground – families can enjoy a 3 mile drive through holiday light show with over 140 LED light displays! $30/car on the weekends.

5:30 PM – Dragon Lights Columbus – walk through an amazing display of Chinese lanterns and holiday light sculptures. Special cultural performances, food and shopping will also be available. Save money by purchasing your tickets online. 

6:00 PM – Parents’ Night Out at Code Ninjas (Hilliard, OH) – Drop your kids off for a night of Code Ninja games, building robots and more! Pizza and drinks will be provided. Register online.

6:00 PM – Winter Festival in Upper Arlington This holiday event includes ice sculpting, horse drawn carriage rides, visits with Santa and his reindeer and the tree lighting ceremony! Plus caroling, a giant human snow globe, s’mores and more!

6:00 PM – Holiday Carriage Rides at Easton Town Center – carriage rides are available every weekend through December 23 for $10/person. Children under 15 are free with a paying adult. Get on the carriage outside of Zara on Gramercy Street. Hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM and Sundays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM.

6:00 PM – Home for the Holidays Weekend in Downtown Delaware – this is a weekend long celebration featuring a tree lighting, Santa, reindeer, horse drawn carriage rides, a scavenger hunt for Dasher, special holiday deals and a parade on Sunday at 3:00 PM.

6:00 PM – November Parents Night Out at We Rock the Spectrum – Columbus Parents night out at We Rock The Spectrum is for kids 3 years and older and includes pizza, snacks, open play, crafts and more! Register online. 

6:30 PM – Family Night Out at Goldfish Swim School – enjoy an open swim in 90 degree water at all Goldfish Swim School locations! Cost for non-members is $5/person or $15/family. First come first served!

6:30 PM – A Heritage Holiday at Heritage Park Groveport Ohio – this event includes music from the Groveport Madison High School Band, crafts for kids, carriage rides, ice carving, refreshments, and Santa arrives by fire truck at 6:30!

7:00 PM – Westerville Tree Lighting Ceremony – this tree lighting ceremony includes live music, a candle lighting celebration, cookies, and visits with Santa!


A BIG Thank You to Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights for sponsoring this post!

Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights is an annual holiday 3 mile drive thru light show, with over 140 LED brilliant light displays during the 25 minute drive, admired in the comfort of your own car. Butch’s children honor his legacy through this annual tradition that has been around for decades, giving thousands of other families the opportunity to create traditions of their own.

From their family to thousands of others, they want to provide a chance for people to take time to make memories during the drive thru the light show. The Fantasy of Lights benefits many local charities such as Recreation Unlimited, A Kid Again, Autism Speaks, among others, and honors current and former military through specialized evenings. This show truly brings light to this world, giving moments that will create memories that will last in families forever.

Located at the Alum Creek State Park Campgrounds at 3311 South Old State Rd., Delaware, OH 43015

Hours are Sunday-Thursday 5:30 PM – 9:30 PM | Friday and Saturday 5:30 PM – 10:30 PM


 Want to sponsor What Should We Do This Weekend? Click here.

SATURDAY

9:00 AM – Kids Clay Saturdays – Coil Winter Holiday Trees at Picktown Arts with Ellie Mescher-Miller – kids can learn how to make a holiday tree out of clay! Recommended for ages 4 and up. Register online.

9:00 AM – Breakfast with Santa at Polaris Fashion Place – meet and greet Santa while having a breakfast catered by California Pizza Kitchen. Purchase tickets ($8/person) at the Mall Management Office.

9:00 AM – Family Gingerbread House Decorating at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – families can decorate a gingerbread house together! Everything you need will be provided in the cost. 

9:00 AM – Christmas In The Garden at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center – each weekend in December you can shop for a Christmas tree and other gifts while enjoying cookies and hot chocolate. There will also be ornament painting!

9:00 AM – Christmas Prelude, Breakfast with Santa and Craft Fair at THE GRAND of Dublin – this event includes breakfast with Santa ($3/person), silent auction, bake sale, craft vendors, live entertainment and more. Breakfast tickets are first come first served and purchased at the door.

9:30 AM – Squats & Tots Saturday Classes! at piccadilly – exercise WITH your kids at this class designed just for parents and their kids – crawlers through preschoolers.

10:00 AM – Holiday Hoot at Gateway Film Center – watch family friendly short films on the big screen and enjoy live music from The Shazzbots! There are also activities in the lobby before the show! This is a free event when you bring a canned good to donate to The Open Shelter.

10:00 AM – Home for the Holidays Weekend in Downtown Delaware – this is a weekend long celebration featuring a tree lighting, Santa, reindeer, horse drawn carriage rides, a scavenger hunt for Dasher, special holiday deals and a parade on Sunday at 3:00 PM.

10:00 AM – Holiday Toy Drive 2018 at Nationwide Children’s Hospital – drop off toys and books for patients at Nationwide Children’s Hospital at this annual Toy Drive. Staff can take your donation from your car. Check the link for Wish List of ideas.

10:00 AM – Christmas on the Towne in Downtown Reynoldsburg – this event includes a visit with Santa, a Secret Santa Shop, carriage rides, and specials available at the local merchants.

10:00 AM – Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory – visit the Conservatory while it’s decked out for the season! Enjoy special performances and activities and this year the event extends into the Children’s Garden!

10:00 AM – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

10:00 AM – Free Pictures With Santa at Antry/Isaacs Team at Saxton Real Estate – free pictures with Santa with a donation of an unwrapped toy for families in need!

10:00 AM – 2018 Grove City Christmas Celebration – this event in Grove City Town Center includes visits with Santa, live entertainment, shopping, a parade, the Heart of Grove City Mistletoe Market and the tree lighting.

10:00 AM – Sensitive Santa at Delaware County Board of Developmental Disabilities – get your picture with Santa in a sensory friendly environment, enjoy treats and a take home craft. This is a free event but they are accepting donations of a new hat or pari of gloves to the Common Grounds Free Store. RSVP online.

10:00 AM – Holiday Happiness at Upper Arlington Public Library – this event includes crafts for kids, live music, a gingerbread display, refreshments, a visit from Santa, face painting and more! See the complete schedule at the link.

10:00 AM – Santa Photos at Easton Town Center – get your family’s picture with Santa between 10:00 AM and 9:00 PM (with 2 break periods (see link)). Get a professional 5×7 for $5 or take a photo with your own camera. Reservations are available!

10:00 AM – Cheryl’s 2018 Annual Holiday Party at Cheryl’s Cookies and Brownies – shop at the Secret Santa Shop, enjoy cookie deals, frost a cookie with Mrs. Claus and visit with Santa!

11:00 AM – WinterFest at Bicentennial Park Scioto Mile – WinterFest includes live music, food trucks, seasonal ales and the opportunity to purchase a hand-crafted bowl to support the Empty Bowls initiative.

11:00 AM – Sensory Storytime at Pickerington Public Library – this is a story time just for kids with special needs including sensory activities, dim lights, quieter music and more sensory friendly accommodations. Families can use the library before it opens! Registration is required.

11:00 AM – Meet Santa at Transcend Coffee + Roastery, USA – meet Santa and enjoy free coffee and hot chocolate. This is a free event but donations are being accepted for A Kid Again.

11:00 AM – Free Lazarus Santa’s Workshop at the Lazarus Building – visit with Santa at The Lazarus Building! Take your own photos with Santa, enjoy crafts, a Holiday Train display, and wander around Columbus Commons enjoying the holiday lights and free carousel rides, face painting and hot chocolate! Bring a new, unwrapped toy for Firefighters 4 Kids.

11:00 AM – Holiday Photos at HOOT Studio – register for a 20 minute portrait time and receive an hour of play time, a treat and your choice of prints from professional photographer Aaron Taylor. This is especially perfect for families of children with special needs. Email to RSVP for a time.

11:30 AM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

12:00 PM – A Heritage Holiday at Heritage Park Groveport Ohio – this event includes crafts for kids, carriage rides, ice carving, refreshments, and visits with Santa, reindeer and other farm animals!

12:00 PM – WinterFest in Downtown Lancaster – WinterFest includes horse drawn wagon rides, Santa, cookies, live entertainment and special activities at participating business.

12:00 PM – Toys For Tots DRIVE THRU Toy Drive at Late Night Slice Short North – drive thru to drop off a toy donation and receive a coupon from Mikey’s Late Night Slice!

12:00 PM – Kids Christmas at the Market at Lynd Fruit Farm – meet Santa, do a take home craft, enjoy food trucks and lots of Christmas goodies to purchase in the shop.

1:00 PM – Holly Days in Historic Dublin – Holly Days in Dublin includes activities at various participating businesses in downtown Dublin such as visits with Santa, carolers, sending letters to Santa, the 12 Elves of Dublin Hunt, crafts for kids, story time and more!

1:00 PM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

1:00 PM – Holiday Cookie Decorating Event at C. Krueger’s – visit the new C. Krueger’s store in the Short North for a cookie decorating event for kids!

2:00 PM – Holidays in Powell – this event includes crafts, activities, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus and the lighting of the city’s Christmas Tree.

3:00 PM – Winter Evening on the Farm at Gallant Farm Park – enjoy seasonal activities on the farm including live music, roasting chestnuts, cookies and family friendly activities.

3:00 PM – 2018 Cookie Walk in Downtown Pataskala – this event is open to the first 400 families and includes a walking tour of 50 local businesses collecting a cookie from each one! Minimum donation of $10 is requested.

5:00 PM – Christmas Under the Clock in Uptown Plain City – Plain City’s holiday event includes a free lighting, live entertainment, a visit from Santa, and open houses at the local businesses.

5:00 PM – Christmas on the Square in Sunbury – Sunbury’s holiday event includes holiday open houses at local businesses, a craft and gift fair, a lighted Christmas Parade, a Chrismas Tree sale, model train display and visit from Santa and much more! Click the link for all the details.

5:00 PM – Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo – Wildlights is included in your admission (or membership) to the Zoo and features special activities, amazing lights, light shows, Rudolph and friends in Asia Quest, Santa’s Holiday Home in the Battelle Ice Bear Outpost, Jingle Ball light display and much more!

5:30 PM – Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights at Alum Creek Campground – families can enjoy a 3 mile drive through holiday light show with over 140 LED light displays! $30/car on the weekends.

5:30 PM – Dragon Lights Columbus – walk through an amazing display of Chinese lanterns and holiday light sculptures. Special cultural performances, food and shopping will also be available. Save money by purchasing your tickets online. 

6:00 PM- Hilltop Art Hop – explore the most artsy block of the Hilltop including artists in residence at 3060 Artworks, classes at Clay Street Ceramics, a Holiday Artisan Market, live music, a book signing at Third Way Cafe and live music and refreshments at The Design Refinery. There will also be a food truck, Curbside Dish, from 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM.

6:00 PM – Grand Opening! at The Design Refinery – my husband and I invite you to the Grand Opening of our design studio and event space! This space will be available to rent for parties, showers, pop up shops, meetings and other events! We will have live music, refreshments and raffle prizes from Third Way Cafe, Clay Street Ceramics, Sarah Harste Weavings and The Design Refinery! 

6:00 PM – Holiday Carriage Rides at Easton Town Center – carriage rides are available every weekend through December 23 for $10/person. Children under 15 are free with a paying adult. Get on the carriage outside of Zara on Gramercy Street. Hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM and Sundays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM.

SUNDAY

9:00 AM – Family Gingerbread House Decorating at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna – families can decorate a gingerbread house together! Everything you need will be provided in the cost. 

9:00 AM – Sensitive Santa at Polaris Fashion Place – enjoy a sensory friendly visit with Santa with a calm environment and special activities. Registration is recommended but not required.

10:00 AM – Christmas In The Garden at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center – each weekend in December you can shop for a Christmas tree and other gifts while enjoying cookies and hot chocolate. There will also be ornament painting!

10:00 AM – Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory – visit the Conservatory while it’s decked out for the season! Enjoy special performances and activities and this year the event extends into the Children’s Garden! Don’t forget that on the first Sunday of each month, the Conservatory is free for residents of Franklin County and the City of Columbus (with valid ID)!

11:00 AM – Santa Photos at Easton Town Center – get your family’s picture with Santa between 10:00 AM and 9:00 PM (with 2 break periods (see link)). Get a professional 5×7 for $5 or take a photo with your own camera. Reservations are available!

11:00 AM – Santa Visits Cub Shrub – visit with Santa at the Short North location of Cub Shrub! Register online.

12:00 PM – HolidayVille 2018 in Clintonville – explore Clintonville with free Jolly Trolley rides through the neighborhood! There will be activities at neighboring businesses including make and take ornaments, s’mores, samples and more!

12:00 PM – Free Princess Meet and Greet at Montrose Elementary School – meet your favorite princesses during the Bexley Holiday Hop. This is free but check the times for each individual princess’ appearance. 

12:00 PM – Holiday Enchantment at Land-Grant Brewing Company – this festive event includes a visit from Santa, wreath making workshops, activities for kids, live music cocktails and treats, caroling and more!

12:00 PM – Holiday Hop 2018 in Bexley – Bexley’s Holiday Hop includes special events at local stores, prizes, giveaways, treats, visits from Santa and more!

 1:00 PM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

1:00 PM – Kid’s Gift Making Workshop at Sunbury Urban Farm – kids can make up to 5 of their own holiday gifts for friends and family. Recommended for ages 5-12 an cost is $20. Register in advance.

1:00 PM – Cram The Cruiser Toy Drive at Grove City UMC – drop off a new, unwrapped toy, visit with Santa and enjoy festive goodies.

2:30 PM  – Snow Day – Theatre for the Very Young at Columbus Children’s Theatre – this is a one act musical play about a young girl’s first snow day recommended for ages 2-6 performed at Park Street Theatre. 

3:00 PM – Holiday Carriage Rides at Easton Town Center – carriage rides are available every weekend through December 23 for $10/person. Children under 15 are free with a paying adult. Get on the carriage outside of Zara on Gramercy Street. Hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM and Sundays from 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM.

3:00 PM – Home for the Holidays Weekend in Downtown Delaware – this is a weekend long celebration featuring a tree lighting, Santa, reindeer, horse drawn carriage rides, a scavenger hunt for Dasher, special holiday deals and a parade on Sunday at 3:00 PM.

4:00 PM – Tree Lighting at Prairie Township Community Center – countdown to the lighting of the tree, visit with Santa and enjoy a musical program.

4:00 PM – Menorah Lighting at Polaris Fashion Place – enjoy doughnuts, cider and family activities at the Menorah lighting on the lower level near Saks Fifth Ave.

4:00 PM – Holiday Hop & 29th Annual Tree Lighting in Hilliard – Hilliard’s holiday celebration includes fun events at several locations around town. There will be live music, food trucks, horse and carriage rides, hot chocolate and live reindeer, balloon twisting, face painting, visits with Santa and much more! See the link for all the details.

4:30 PM – Gingerbread House Decorating at The Morgan House – families can decorate a gingerbread house! $40. Call to register.

5:00 PM – Village Lights 2018 in German Village – stroll around German Village following the path lit with lanterns, visiting local businesses, enjoying live music and lots of goodies from local businesses. Also this year you can visit the German Village Makers Market and Not Your Mama’s Craft Market during the event!

5:00 PM – Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo – Wildlights is included in your admission (or membership) to the Zoo and features special activities, amazing lights, light shows, Rudolph and friends in Asia Quest, Santa’s Holiday Home in the Battelle Ice Bear Outpost, Jingle Ball light display and much more!

5:30 PM – Dragon Lights Columbus – walk through an amazing display of Chinese lanterns and holiday light sculptures. Special cultural performances, food and shopping will also be available. Save money by purchasing your tickets online. 

5:30 PM – Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights at Alum Creek Campground – families can enjoy a 3 mile drive through holiday light show with over 140 LED light displays! $30/car on the weekends.

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*Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead or check links to confirm activities.  Enjoy what you do today!*

ICYMI: 10 of our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions


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72 Things to Do Thanksgiving Week in Columbus

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Looking for things to do in Columbus around Thanksgiving? If you have family in town and/or a few days off of work and are looking for something to do, check out this list of 72 events and things to do around Thanksgiving in Columbus!

72 Things to do Thanksgiving Week in Columbus:

If there’s a chance you’ll need to walk off an extra piece of pie (or two) or get bickering family members out of the house….tuck this list away! And have a happy week of thankfulness! (As always, please double check the link for exact details, dates and times!) There will not be an additional What Should We Do This Weekend? post this week. This is the list! 🙂

holiday train and Wildlights at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Any Time:

1. Conservatory Aglow is happening at Franklin Park Conservatory! While you’re there, check out the Gingerbread Competition.

2. Wildlights is in full swing all weekend at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium!

3. Visit LEGOLAND Columbus Discovery Center at Easton Town Center. LEGOLAND is open 365 days a year. Thanksgiving Hours are 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM and the last admission is at 3:00 PM.

4. Get your kid’s photo with Santa at Easton Town Center

5. Christmas at the Castle, a Kingdom of Lights! at Landoll’s Mohican Castle features over 100,000 lights, a Christmas tree, holiday music and visits from Santa! This is a free event! This event happens every night starting Friday!

6. Drive through Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights any night through January 1st!

7. Visit the PNC Festival of Lights at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden

8. Drop a letter in Santa’s Mailbox in Pickerington beginning Wednesday.

9. Check out the Thanksgiving Weekend special at Ten Pin Alley. It includes $3 laser tag missions, a family fun pack special, and more. They are open on Thanksgiving and have specials running the rest of the week!

10. For many people this is the week to get their Christmas Tree! You can Choose & Cut Christmas Trees at Young’s Jersey Dairy or pick another farm or tree lot from this list of Christmas Tree Farms in Columbus and Beyond!

11. Friday through Sunday you can take a Holiday Carriage Ride at Easton Town Center!

12. Sign up for a Family Gingerbread House Decorating class at Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna.

13, Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is playing this Friday, Saturday and Sunday only at Ohio Theatre!

14. Clifton Mill Lights opens the day after Thanksgiving! Gates open at 5:00 every night and the display runs through New Year’s Eve!

15. See the amazing lanterns, watch cultural performances, shop and eat Chinese and traditional fair food at Dragon Lights Columbus at Ohio Expo Center from November 23-January 6, 2019. Nightly from 5:30 PM – 10:00 PM.

16. Ohio History Center is open from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM on Friday, Saturday and Sunday with special activities with a Space theme including building your own model parachute, special visitors, rockets and more!

17. Think Outside the Brick is now on display at Columbus Museum of Art! This LEGO set up shouldn’t be missed and would make a great weekend outing! Don’t forget the museum is free on Sundays!

18. Drive through the Fairfield County Festival of Lights. This light display goes on Thanksgiving through Christmas!

19. Winterfest opens at Kings Island on November 23 and operates select nights through December 31. . It includes ice skating, holiday characters, millions of lights, holiday shows, carolers, and the park will included 10 winter wonderlands to visit.


A big Thank You to Miss Em’s for sponsoring this post!

Miss Em’s is a local online boutique featuring great jewelry, scarves, teacher gifts, and accessories. All of their items are at a very reasonable price, and with this 40% off coupon prices will start at just $5! Between 11/21/18 and 11/26/18 What Should We Do Today? readers can get 40% off their entire order on MissEms.com by using the coupon code: TurkeyDay


Monday, November 19, 2018:

20. Story Time in the Park is happening at Deer Haven Park.

21. Participate in a Thanksgiving Art Project and Stuff the Turkey Game! at Olde Gahanna Sanctuary

Franklin Park Conservatory and Columbus Museum of Art

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

22. Have a Mommy & Me breakfast at Sunny Street Café (Polaris) it’s a Thanksgiving Gathering!

23. Have a Pajama Dance Party! at Bexley Public Library

Wednesday, November 21, 2018:

24. Sign your kids up for the Educational Day Camp at Horse-N-Round Fun. This camp takes place on Wednesday and Friday for ages 6 and up and will go over horse care and riding. Lunch will be provided. Register in advance for this one! There’s also a preschool version.

25. No school on Wednesday? Send your kids ages 5-12 to the School’s Out Program at Sunbury Urban Farm. The theme is Give Thanks. Register in advance.

26. Another option for the kids is the Day Before Thanksgiving Camp at Picassos where lots of Thanksgiving Crafts will be made! Register in advance.

27. Take the kids to SuperGames Winter Open Play! at 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM. Arrive early because the play space is first come, first served! Cost is $10 per child.

28. Do a Sweet Turkeys Craft at Franklin Park Conservatory This class involves a cookie craft and does require preregistration and admission to the Conservatory. Cost is $4/cookie.

29. If the adults need a little time to unwind before the big day, head over to the Thanksgiving Eve Beer Tasting at House Wine in Worthington!

30. Visit the 400 West Rich and Chromedge Studios for Welcome Wednesdays! from 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM to get a sneak peek at the work of their resident artists! There will be live demos, tours an more!

31. See everyone’s favorite puddle jumper in Peppa Pig Live! at Palace Theatre.

Ten Pin Alley and Trees at Franklin Park Conservatory

Thursday, November 22, 2018:

Lots of opportunities for exercise on Thanksgiving Day! Try out one of these:

35. Take a trip to Cleveland for Thanksgiving at the Zoo at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

36. Skate your heart out at the 99 Cents Thanksgiving Skate at Skate Zone 71

37. Have the Easiest Thanksgiving Meal ever at Bob Evans.

Friday, November 23, 2018:

Black Friday offers lots of shopping options such as:

  • 38. Ohio Made Market: Black Friday Edition at Grove City Brewing Company – the Black Friday Market features local makers with gift items for everyone on your list! Free parking and admission.
  • 39. Zassy’s Black Friday Shopping Event! – check out the newly renovated Zassy’s Tap Room and shop from over 30 vendors. There will be raffles, food and drink, and more! (No children after 8:00 PM.)
  • 40. The Holiday Market at Canal Market District takes place on Friday and will local vendors, food trucks, holiday treats, and more. Afterwards stick around for the lighting of the Licking County Courthouse!
  • 41. Black Friday at Ivory Barn – shop from Ohio vendors for holiday decor, gifts and more! This market goes on Friday, Saturday and Sunday!
  • Related: Tried and True Gift Ideas for Young Boys

42. At the Black Friday Open Gym at Gym Skills kids can get their energy out at this open gym time that includes lots of opportunities for jumping, swinging, balancing and more!

43. Head to Newark for Holiday Homecoming 2017 at The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art & Technology on Friday to learn about the heritage of the community! Design your own holiday card, build an ornament and more!

44. Drop your kids off at the Board Game Youth Camp at Creative Art Bar Hilliard and they can play games and do crafts including creating their own checker board set! Ages 7 and up. RSVP required.

45. Take a trip to Urbana for the Holiday Horse Parade, a lighted horse parade! Santa will arrive, there will be street carolers, a tree lighting ceremony and more!

46. Take the kids to SuperGames Winter Open Play! at 6:00 PM. Arrive early because the play space is first come, first served! Cost is $10 per child.

47. Drop the kids off at Creative Art Bar Hilliard for an evening of crafting, pizza and other activities while you go shopping or have a date night! RSVP required.

48. Glass Axis is hosting a School’s Out Open House from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM where there will be glass art projects for kids of all ages! There will be free glassblowing demos and 3 art projects for kids to choose from based on age!

49. You can drop your kids off at Young Chefs Academy Gahanna for Kids Night Out! There will be hands on cooking workshops and Chef Wars!

Christmas Trees and Franklin Park Conservatory Train

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Small Business Saturday is a great way to shop local this year! Several special events are going on including:

60. Anyone ages 7 and up can take a Fall Bird Walk at Shale Hollow Park to watch for birds. Binoculars will be available.

61. At the Holiday Open House at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center on Saturday and Sunday, you can pick out your Christmas tree while you enjoy refreshments, a visit from The Grinch, hot cider and a festive atmosphere!

62. Play classic board games at Gallant Farm Park!

63. Game Days at HOMAGE Easton Town Center and HOMAGE Short North includes free donuts from Buckeye Donuts, coffee and special deals on Saturday mornings for each Buckeye game this season!

64. Work off that extra piece of pumpkin pie at Squats & Tots Saturday Classes! at piccadilly

65. Take your preschoolers to a Storytime at Grange Insurance Audubon Center.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

66. The Holiday Open House at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center includes hot apple cider, cookies and the Grinch! You can pick out a Christmas tree here, too!

67. Olde Worthington Holiday Open House is on Sunday from 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM and it includes an iceless ice skating rink, horse drawn carriage rides, live music and a visit from Santa! The evening ends with the tree lighting ceremony on the Village Green!

68. Head to Pizzuti Collection Family Day from 12:00 AM – 5:00 PM for free admission, art inspired activity books, crafts and family tours!

69. Have a fun experience with the whole family at Family Fun Day – Get $3 Off on Sunday Bookings at The Escape Room USA in Columbus!

70. For a $25 donation to Stop the Suffering you can have your picture taken with Santa at HTH Farm Market! Families and pets are welcome. There will also be a Bake Sale for $10 for a box of baked goods!

71. There’s another chance for Pet Pics with Santa at Polaris Fashion Place today from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM on the lower level.

72. The Kids Christmas Party at Clay Street Ceramics will include painting ornaments, decorating cookies and working on Christmas crafts. There will be a special visit from Santa between 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM. $15/child.


Want to sponsor What Should We Do This Weekend? Click here.

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*Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead or check links to confirm activities.  Enjoy what you do today!*

Christmas in Columbus

ICYMI: 10 of our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions

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72 Things to do Thanksgiving Weekend in Columbus, Ohio

 


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