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10 of Our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions

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These are 10 Holiday and Christmas events we make sure not to miss every year! If you’re looking to start some family-friendly Christmas traditions around Columbus, start here!

Every year I feel slightly overwhelmed by all of the Holiday events I really don’t want to miss. A few years ago, I sat down and wrote them out on a calendar. And THAT is pretty much where the idea for this blog began! 😉

Now we’ve come full circle and, though there are probably hundreds of holiday events going on around Columbus, today I am sharing 10 things my family loves doing at Christmastime in Columbus!

Here are 10 of our favorite family-friendly Christmas Events in Columbus!

1. Village Lights

Village Lights, German Village, Columbus, Ohio

Hands down, this is my favorite Columbus tradition of the entire year. Wow, did I really just say that? I did. I look forward to this probably more than anything else. I honestly don’t know how much my kids like it, but there are free cookies and hot chocolate, so I haven’t heard any complaints!

The streets of German Village are lit with luminaries and restaurants, shops, and even a few private homes along the route are open late with special deals, free goodies and live music! Designated parking areas and shuttles are available.

When: December 8, 2019, 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Where: throughout German Village

2. Wildlights

wild lights at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

You have to see Wildlights! The light shows are spectacular and the zoo becomes an (even more) magical place for about 6 weeks leading up to New Year’s Day! The first time we ever attempted to go to Wildlights, there was so much traffic that by the time we got there it was too late for my 1 yr old and we just drove right on by the entrance and back on home!

Weekends are very busy, so if you can, I suggest trying a week day evening and arriving before 5:00 PM! If you’re a member, you can also avoid the crowds by catching the Member Preview held in mid November.

When: November 16 , 2018 – January 6, 2019 (Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day) (Wildlights begins at 5:00 PM)
Where: 4850 Powell Rd, Powell, OH 43065

Wildlights at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

3. Conservatory Aglow (Formerly Merry and Bright)

conservatory aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory, Columbus, Ohio

Conservatory Aglow offers special holiday decorations, performances and evening hours at Franklin Park Conservatory. Throughout the season live music and special events are scheduled and the Conservatory is decorated beautifully (that goes without saying)!

There are lights throughout inside and outside and it’s breathtaking! During this season, Franklin Park Conservatory is open until 9:00 PM. There will be special family-friendly activities happening all through the season!

lights at Conservatory Aglow at Franklin Park Conservatory, Columbus, Ohio

New in 2019, decorations will expand into the Grand Mallway. This year there will be a Special Engagement Admission Rate for this event and members will receive half off these rates. See the link for details.

When: November 16, 2019 – January 5, 2020: 10:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Where: 1777 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43203

Rotating railroad at Franklin Park Conservatory

4. Bicentennial Park

christmas lights on the scioto mile, bicentennial park, columbus, Ohio

Throughout the holiday season, the Scioto Mile is awash in light – Christmas lights, that is! Taking place on Saturday, December 7, 2019, is WinterFest. it will include live performances and food trucks, as well as seasonal ales and cocktails. The park will be full of lights beginning November 21st!

When: November 21, 2019 through Early January 2020
Where: 233 S. Civic Center Dr., Columbus, OH 43215

Christmas lights at Bicentennial Park on the Scioto Mile

5. Columbus Commons and the Lazarus Windows

Christmas Lights at Columbus Commons

When you’re at Bicentennial Park, make plans to walk a few blocks to Columbus Commons where the park will be filled with holiday displays and lights! Just across the street (at the corner of High and Town) in the old Lazarus building, the windows will be filled with scenes from the 12 Days of Christmas! On December 7, 2019 there will be a free Santa’s Workshop at the Lazarus Building!

When: Late November through early January from dusk until to 11:00 PM
Where: 160 S. High St., Columbus, OH 43215

6. Huntington Holiday Train

Huntington Train at Main Library, Columbus, Ohio

Main Library is home to the Huntington Holiday Train and every year this amazing display is set up during the holiday season! The library typically begins set up of the train in mid November and it is usually up through New Years!

When: Mid November, 2019 – Early January, 2020
Where: 96 S. Grant Ave. Columbus, OH 43215

Holiday Train at Main Library in Columbus, Ohio

7. Holiday Train at Ohio History Center

holiday train at Ohio History Center

If you happen to have kids that like trains, there is a also holiday train set up at the Ohio History Center. Granted, it’s not quite as elaborate as the Huntington Train, but since we’re members at Ohio History Center, this one is still a no-brainer for me and two boys who love trains! We don’t miss it! F

or two weekends in December, Ohio Village will host Dickens of a Christmas where you can celebrate Christmas in the 19th century with Victorian crafts, snacks, caroling and more!

When: Late November – Early January
Where: 800 E. 17th. Ave., Columbus OH 43211

Holiday Train at Ohio History Center

8. Think Outside the Brick

Think Outside the Brick at Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, Ohio

This exhibit at the Columbus Museum of Art isn’t necessarily holiday themed, but it is definitely a holiday tradition in Columbus! If you have kids on Christmas break, this would be a great reason to take them to the Art Museum!

The LEGO replica of Columbus is awesome and we love to visit at this time! There are usually blocks for free building in the Big Idea Gallery, too!

Admission is free on Sundays and on Thursday nights you “pay what you want” from 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM!

When: November 23, 2019 – January 17, 2020
Where: 480 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43215

Think Outside the Brick LEGO exhibit at Columbus Museum of Art

9. Easton

Christmas Tree at Easton Town Center

We always enjoy going to Easton at Christmastime – and not just to do our Christmas shopping! There is a life-sized nativity and a humongous Christmas tree (an all-new, 56 ft tree covered in 28, 680 RGB LED’s arrived in 2017!)!

There are carriage rides, live music performances and the lighting ceremony takes place on November 22, 2019 beginning at 6:30 PM and includes a parade, a fireworks show, a visit from Santa and more!

Nativity at Easton Town Center

When: beginning November 16, 2018
Where: 160 Easton Town Center, Columbus, OH 43219

10. State Auto Christmas Corner

State Auto Christmas Corner Nativity Display, Downtown Columbus, Ohio

Christmas Corner is something we love to do close to Christmas Eve! You can walk through a life-sized nativity following the Christmas story! The Tree Lighting Ceremony takes place on Tuesday, December 3, 2019 at 5:30 PM.

There are choirs scheduled on Friday and Saturday evenings through December 23rd and free hot chocolate (donations accepted!) will be available on those evenings!  There are ample parking lots designated for viewing this display!

wiseman at State Auto Christmas Corner in Downtown Columbus

When: Tuesday, December 3, 2019 through Christmas Day when baby Jesus is placed in the manger.
Where: 518 E Broad St., Columbus, OH 43215

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10 of Our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions

I hope that whatever you chose to do, you have a special season with your family!

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Top 10 Things to do with Kids in Columbus, Ohio

ICYMI: Top 10 Things to do with Your Kids in Columbus, Ohio


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Halloween Events Around Columbus

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Looking for a kid-friendly Halloween party for your family? This list ranges from silly to scary and there’s a Halloween party in Columbus almost every night of the month!

There are tons of kid and family-friendly Halloween celebrations around town! On this list you will find something for everyone! Some are more scary and some are just plain fun! Make sure to click the link for all the details! Scroll through the list to find your city’s trick-or-treat schedule as well!

pumpkins at a farm stand near Columbus, Ohio

Halloween Events around Columbus and Central Ohio for families:

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

deMonye's Greenhouse

Monday, October 7, 2019

Monster Mash at Delaware County District Library

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Trick, It’s A Treat at Philip Heit Center for Healthy New Albany

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Friday, October 11, 2019

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

HighBall Halloween 2019 at Greater Columbus Convention Center

Haunted Wagon Rides at Young’s Dairy

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

KidsLinked.com’s 2019 Olentangy TreatFest! at SuperKick Columbus

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Open Play Date/Costume Party at KSM Sports and Fitness

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

All Hallows’ Eve at Ohio Village

HighBall Halloween 2019 at Greater Columbus Convention Center

October Grown-Up & Me: // Paper Pumpkin Mosaic at Art with Anna

Harvest Festival & Trunk-or-Treat at Sunbury United Methodist Church

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Haunted Wagon Rides at Young’s Dairy

Pumpkins at a farm near Columbus, Ohio

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

Giant Pumpkin Carving at The MAiZE at Little Darby Creek

Little Sprouts: Fall Festival at Wilson’s Garden Center

Monday, October 14, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

DeMonye's haunted green house in Columbus, Ohio

DeMonye’s Haunted Green House

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

The Circleville Pumpkin Show

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Thursday, October 17, 2019

The Circleville Pumpkin Show

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Trunks Tricks and Treats at The Shops at Worthington Place

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Friday, October 18, 2019

The Circleville Pumpkin Show

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

Ghost Trolley at The Ohio Railway Museum

Fall Feast: Trick-or-Treat & Pumpkin Hike at Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park

Haunted Wagon Rides at Young’s Dairy

Halloween Events around Columbus

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

The Circleville Pumpkin Show

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

2019 Old Hilliard Halloween Haunt at Hilliard’s Station Park

Halloween Hop at Columbus Speech and Hearing

Day of the Dead 2019 at Green Lawn Cemetery

Creepside Festival at Creekside Park & Plaza

Halloween Paint and Play at Homestead Metro Park

Great Pumpkin Celebration at Cabela’s

Spooky Pooch Parade at Kauffman Park

Halloween in the Park at Carl Frye Park

Halloween Cooking Class at 1400 Food Lab

Boo n’ Brew at Indian Mound Mall

Boo ‘n Brew at Polaris Fashion Place

KidX: Boo Bash at Polaris Fashion Place

Halloween Fun Fest at Lifetime Fitness Easton

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

All Hallows’ Eve at Ohio Village

Ghost Trolley at The Ohio Railway Museum

Halloween Party at the Park at Jefferson Community Park

Community Halloween Party at JFK Park

Pumpkin Hike at Alley Park

Haunted Wagon Rides at Young’s Dairy

Mums and Mummies in Westgate Park

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Ghost Trolley at The Ohio Railway Museum

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

20th Annual Halloween Pet Parade and Fall Festival at Easton Town Center

Trick or Treat Trail at Gallant Woods park

Great Pumpkin Celebration at Cabela’s

7th Annual MUMS & Mummies at Westgate Park

Spook Out Movie Magic: HOCUS POCUS at Ohio Theatre

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens
 
halloween events in Columbus, Ohio

Monday, October 21, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse
 
Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens
 
Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse
 
Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens
 
Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play
 
Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Halloween Parade at Fun Town Play and Learn Cafe
 
Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens
 
Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse
 
Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play
 
Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus
 

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Costume & Candy Crawl at Kingsdale Shopping Center

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Boo & Brew at Bridge Park!

Mother Son Halloween Costume Dance at Reynoldsburg Senior Center

The Great Westerville Pumpkin Glow at Heritage Park

haunted maze in columbus, Ohio

Friday, October 25, 2019

Jennifer Ellis Halloween Sing-a-long and Costume Parade at Fresh Thyme Farmers Markets (Dublin)

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Great Pumpkin Celebration at Cabela’s

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Wizards & Wands Festival 2019 at Westerville Public Library

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

Trick or Treat Trail at Prairie Township Community Center

2019 Trunk or Treat at Primrose School of Hilliard

Family Halloween Party at Vineyard Community Church

The Great Westerville Pumpkin Glow at Heritage Park

Kids Halloween Party at Magic Mountain Fun Center Polaris

Ghost Trolley at The Ohio Railway Museum

Spooky Lantern Hike at Glacier Ridge Metro Park

Haunted Wagon Rides at Young’s Dairy

Ghosts of Gahanna Walking Tour

Blacklick Haunted Park in Blacklick Park

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

Trick or Treat at the Boo-tanical Gardens at Franklin Park Conservatory

Halloween Hoopla! at Marysville Public Library

Halloween Pictures at Captivating Canines

Great Pumpkin Celebration at Cabela’s

Kids Halloween Party at Adobe Gilas Easton

Ghost Trolley at The Ohio Railway Museum

1st Annual Spooky Pooch Parade at Huber Park

Candy by the Carload at City of Powell Local Government

Ghostbusters at Plaza Theatre

A Haunted Night in the Gardens at Hoover Gardens & Gift Center

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

The Great Westerville Pumpkin Glow at Heritage Park

Haunted Wagon Rides at Young’s Dairy

Boo at the Zoo in Columbus Ohio

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Pumpkin Painting at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Boo at the Zoo at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Ghost Trolley at The Ohio Railway Museum

Trick or Treat at the Boo-tanical Gardens at Franklin Park Conservatory

Halloween Family Sunday at North Market

The Great Westerville Pumpkin Glow at Heritage Park

Pumpkin Nights at Franklin Park Conservatory

Young Explorers: Trick-or-Treat Hike at Homestead Metro Park

Hilliard Trunk or Treat at Hilliard/Ray Patch YMCA

Boo Night at Big Bounce

Monday, October 28, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Haunted Village in Pickerington

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Homeschool Halloween at Columbus Metropolitan Library – Gahanna Branch

Haunted Maze at Hoover Gardens

Haunted Greenhouse at DeMonye’s Greenhouse

Halloween Activities at Mom Land Indoor Play

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus

Tots Trick or Treat at City Hall in Pickerington

Trick or Treat in the City of Columbus

Trick or Treat / Block Party at Groveport Town Hall

Reynoldsburg Trick or Treat

Trick or Treat in Powell

Hilliard Trick-or-Treat

Trick-or-Treat in Marysville

Trick or Treat in Pataskala

Trick or Treat on Inah at CW Church

Boo off Broadway & Trick or Treat in Grove City

See all community trick or treat times listed on ABC6.

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Halloween Events Around Columbus

 

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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: Central Ohio Pumpkin Patches and Fall Festivals

 

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Free Columbus and Central Ohio Splash Pads and Fountains

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These Central Ohio and Columbus splash pads are easy ways to cool off in the summer and a safer alternative for young kids who don’t yet know how to swim!

All of these splash pads are free to enter and most are open Memorial Day through Labor Day. It’s always a good idea to check the link for dates and hours of operation! You may want to read: 25 Things to Pack for a Successful Trip to the Splash Pad before you go!

Free Columbus and Central Ohio Splash Pads and Fountains:

1. Bicentennial Park

233 S. Civic Center Dr., Columbus, OH 43215

fountain at Bicentennial Park

Bicentennial Park on the Scioto Mile

2. North Bank Park

311 W. Long St., Columbus, OH 43215

  • The splash pad is behind the pavilion at the end of Neil Ave.

3. Hilliard’s Station Park

4021 Main St., Hilliard, OH 43026

Splash pad at Hilliard's Station Park

Hilliard’s Station Park

4. Easton Town Center Fountains

160 Easton Square Pl, Columbus, OH 43219

Fountain at Easton Town Center

Easton Town Center

5. Grove City Splash Pad

3600 Discovery Dr., Grove City, OH 43123

Splash Pad at Fryer Park in Grove City, Ohio

Fryer Park Splash Pad

6. Ballantrae Community Park Spray Fountains

6350 Woerner Temple Rd., Dublin, OH 43016

Fountains at Ballantrae Park in Dublin, Ohio

Ballantrae Park

7. Powell Splash Pad

47 Hall St., Powell, OH 43065

Splash Pad in Powell, Ohio

Powell Splash Pad

8. Hanby Park

115 E Park St., Westerville, OH 43081

9. Fountain at Polaris Fashion Place

1500 Polaris Pkwy., Columbus, OH 43240

fountain at Polaris Fashion Place

Polaris Fashion Place

10. Partners Park

125 E 6th St., Marysville, OH 43040here

11. Spray and Play at Veterans Park

1121 South Houk Rd., Delaware, OH 43015

Spray and Play at Veteran's Park in Delaware

Veteran’s Park

12. Fountain Plaza at Dorrian Green

50 South Belle St., Columbus, Ohio 43215

 

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splash pads in Columbus Ohio

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kids eat free in Columbus Ohio

Kids Eat Free or Cheap in Columbus and Central Ohio

 


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