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 55 events and things to do Thanksgiving week in Columbus!
If there’s a chance you’ll need to walk (or skate) 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! 🙂
Things to Do Any Time Thanksgiving Week and Weekend:
1. Conservatory Aglow is happening at Franklin Park Conservatory! This is a special engagement event and reserving tickets is highly recommended.
2. Wildlights is in full swing all weekend at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium! Tickets can be purchased in advance.
3. Visit LEGOLAND Columbus Discovery Center at Easton Town Center. LEGOLAND will be open every day this week except Thanksgiving Day!
4. Drive through Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights, a holiday light display at Alum Creek Park Campground any night through January 1, 2023.
5. Drive through WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio at Hartford Fairgrounds to see over 1 million synchronized LED lights! Open every night from 5:30 PM – 10:00 PM. Reservations are strongly encouraged.
6. 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 event will be $8.00 per car on Friday & Saturday nights, free Sunday-Thursday nights. This event begins on Friday, November 25, 2022. Advance tickets are available.
7. Take a road trip to visit the PNC Festival of Lights at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. Included with general admission.
8. For many people this is the week to get their Christmas Tree! Pick a farm or tree lot from this list of Christmas Tree Farms in Columbus and Beyond!
9. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday you can take a Holiday Carriage Ride at Easton Town Center!
10. Order a Family Gingerbread House Decorating kit from Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna. Reservations required.
11. Clifton Mill Lights opens the day after Thanksgiving! Gates open at 5:00 every night and the display runs through December 30, 2022! (Tip: take cash to get through the gate quicker and avoid a convenience fee.)
12. Take Photos With Santa At Polaris Fashion Place. Take your own photo or purchase an optional photo. See link for times and reservations.
13. Drive through Light Up Camp at Flying Horse Farms beginning November 25, 2021.
14. Dazzling Christmas Lights in Westerville begin on November 25!
15. Take a trip to Cleveland for the Wild Winter Lights Drive Through in Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
16. Visit the Lucy Depp Park Light Show in Powell beginning Black Friday!
17. Visit the Holiday Lights at Columbus Commons! They will be lit every night from 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM beginning November 18, 2022 until January 1, 2023.
18. After you visit Columbus Commons, head over to the Scioto Mile Holiday Lights which will be lit November 23rd through January 2nd. The lights will be on from dusk to dawn each day!
19. Make Cocoa & Cookie Kits for Broad Street Food Pantry. Through Dec. 11, kids can help Seeds of Caring and the Broad Street Food Pantry make sure every family can bake up delicious holiday memories with this simple Anywhere Project that can be done at home, school, or wherever you are!
20. Visit the Huntington Holiday Train Display In Downtown Main Columbus Metropolitan Library. November 21st through January 8th visit the main library in downtown Columbus to see the Huntington Holiday Train Display. This is a must see for all train lovers during the holiday season!
21. Take Photos With Santa At Easton Town Center. Take a photo with your own camera or purchase one on the spot. See link for tickets times and pricing of event.
Monday, November 21, 2022:
22. Join FIT4MOM Columbus North for Our Village: Thanksgiving Keepsake Craft and make a handprint turkey craft after their morning fitness class! You do not need to be a member to participate in the craft! Your first workout is free!
23. Drop by Highbanks Metro Park between 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM to pick up a self-guided scavenger hunt!
Tuesday, November 22, 2022:
24. Attend National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – Free Screening at Jeanne B. McCoy Community Center for the Arts and watch the movie Christmas Vacation at the McCoy Center! This is a free event on Tuesday at 7:00 PM but it is requested that you bring a non-perishable food item or cash donation for the Thanks For Giving 4 Miler.
25. Pick up a dog for a Thanksgiving Holiday Sleepover! at the Franklin County Dog Shelter and offer them a home through the holiday! This is a first come, first served opportunity! Walk-ins only!
Wednesday, November 23, 2022:
26. See Cocomelon Live! at the Palace Theatre!
27. Attend a School’s Out! Skate at Skate Zone 71 from either 12:00 PM – 2:30 PM or 3:00 PM – 5:30 PM
Thursday, November 24, 2022, THANKSGIVING DAY:
28. Run the Chase Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot!
29. Skate your Turkey Off at Skate Zone 71 from 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM.
30. Take a break from the kids with a Thanksgiving Adult Skate at Skate Zone 71 from 9:30 PM to 1:00 AM!
Friday, November 25, 2022:
Black Friday doesn’t have to mean shopping! Check out shopping ideas plus these other fun things to do!
31. Shop Black Friday Record Store Day at Spoonful Records.
32. Attend BLACK FRIDAY Record Store Day 2020 at Used Kids Records.
33. Another chance to shop Black Friday – Record Store Day at Lost Weekend Records
34. Attend Opening Day At Needle And Pine Christmas Tree Farm at 10am. Needle And Pine Christmas Tree Farm opens its doors for the holiday season! Trees, wreaths and local vendors will all be on site for shopping. Or plan to come back to visit Needle And Pine on Sunday November 27th for Santa Meet & Greet at Noon. A photographer will be on site for pictures or take one of your own!
35. Attend Holiday Homecoming Storybook Village at The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art & Technology on Friday from 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM. Activities include ornament making, science experiments, crafts and story time. There will be storybook characters throughout the museum, hot cocoa and cookies! Storybook costumes are encouraged!
36. Attend the Central Ohio Model Railroad Club Open House on Friday, Saturday or Sunday from 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM to see a model train layout and kids can run a Thomas Train!
37. Take an Off- Trail Ravine Ramble At Sharon Woods Metro Park . At 1pm visit Sharon Woods Metro park for a 2.5 mile hike through ravines and streams while learning about this great nature preserve. Wear clothing that can get wet and muddy, this hike is recommended for kids ages 5 and older, and is not stroller friendly.
38. Head to Blendon Woods Metro Park to Opt Outside and take a hike at 2:00 PM!
39. Take a trip to the 50th Dayton Holiday Festival Grand Illumination & Parade. Starting at 4pm visit Downtown Dayton for their 50th year holiday festival, grand illumination and parade! So much fun for everyone at this family friendly event! Everything from tree lighting, parade, live entertainment, gingerbread house contest, horse drawn wagon rides, kids holiday village and more! See link for complete list of times and details of this great event!
40. Attend the Holiday Horse Parade In Monument Square District Urbana. This event starts at 4:00 PM and includes a tree lighting, carriage rides, lighted horse parade, food trucks and more!
41. Attend Holiday In The City:Grand Illumination In Downtown Springfield. At 5:30 pm visit Downtown Springfield for Holiday In The City: Grand Illumination. Santa will be there to light up the city, live music, ice skating and more!
42. Attend Black Friday $5 Friday! with Horse-N-Round Fun. Meet farm animals, a zebra, draft horses, bunnies and more! $5 entrance includes a pony ride and activities! No reservations needed.
Saturday, November 26, 2022:
43. Attend the Christmas Open House at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center which takes place on Saturday and Sunday and includes visits from the Grinch, ornament painting, cookies, hot chocolate and Christmas Tree sales!
44. Attend the Central Ohio Model Railroad Club Open House on Friday, Saturday or Sunday from 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM to see a model train layout and kids can run a Thomas Train!
45. Take a Give Thanks for Wildlife Hike at Blendon Woods Metro Park. This is a 1.5 mile hike on a gravel path.
46. Shop the Winter Makers Market at East Market from 11:00 AM-7:00 PM on both November 26 & 27.
47. Visit Founders park for All Is Bright Parade And Christmas Tree Lighting In Founders Park including a parade of brightly lit trucks and Christmas tree lighting in Founders park at 6:00 PM.
48. Explore the Tinsel & Traditions Trail in downtown Lancaster beginning today through December 2, 2022!
Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights
Sunday, November 27, 2022:
49. Attend the Christmas Open House at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center which takes place on Saturday and Sunday and includes visits from the Grinch, ornament painting, cookies, hot chocolate and Christmas Tree sales!
50. Experience A Christmas Carol firsthand with Uptown Scrooge – a walking tour through the streets and shops of Uptown Westerville! Suitable for ages 4 and up.
51. See A Charlie Brown Christmas: Live on Stage at the Palace Theatre
52. Attend the Old Worthington Holiday Open House at noon on the Sunday after Thanksgiving. This event includes horse-drawn carriage rides, train rides, live music and photos with Santa! There will be special promotions and sidewalk sales at the local businesses. Stick around for the Worthington Tree Illumination that takes place at 5:30 pm.
53. Join Happy Tails-N-Trails At Sharon Woods Metro Park with your canine companion at Sharon Woods Metro Park for a 2-mile hike through the woods.
54. Attend the Central Ohio Model Railroad Club Open House on Friday, Saturday or Sunday from 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM to see a model train layout and kids can run a Thomas Train!
55. Visit Blendon Woods Metro Park at 5:30 for Creature Feature: Treetop Turkeys At Blendon Woods Metro Park – an evening of searching for Blendon’s largest treetop birds all while enjoying a 1.5-mile hike.
54. Experience the Winter Wonderland Forest at Blendon Woods Metro Park Nature Center. The Nature Center is full of trees that are wrapped in lights! This will be on display beginning today through January 2, 2022.
55. Attend the Circleville Christmas Parade In Historic Downtown Circleville. See link for parade route!
Need more ideas? Try 100 Fun Things to do in Columbus, Ohio
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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!*
Tuesday 21st of November 2017
So many fun things! Makes me wish we weren't out of town this week!
Tuesday 21st of November 2017
Holy cow! You’ve been busy. This is the most impressive list!
Mary from Mission to Save
Monday 20th of November 2017
WOW, wow, wow! What a list! And some things I have never heard of before, so thank you!!
Monday 20th of November 2017
Wow!! This is perfect. We have lots of free time this weekend.
Monday 20th of November 2017
What an amazing list, Julie!!!!!!! I can't remember what I did before you started providing us these awesome round up lists!