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57 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 57 events and things to do Thanksgiving week in Columbus!

Disclaimer: Franklin County is currently under a Stay At Home Advisory. Many events are being cancelled or going virtual. Please check links before making your plans and use your best judgement when deciding to attend an in-person event. Stay safe, Columbus!

57 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:

Light Tunnel at Conservatory Aglow

Tunnel of Light at Franklin Park Conservatory.

1. Conservatory Aglow is happening at Franklin Park Conservatory! Tickets must be purchased in advance.

2. Wildlights is in full swing all weekend at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium! Tickets must be purchased in advance.

3. Visit LEGOLAND Columbus Discovery Center at Easton Town Center. LEGOLAND is closed on Tuesday and Wednesday this year. Purchase tickets online.

Light Tunnel at WonderLight's Christmas in Ohio in Hebron, Ohio

Drive Through Tunnel at WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio!

4. Drive through WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio in Hebron, Ohio to see over 1 million synchronized LED lights! Open every night from 5:30 PM – 10:00 PM.

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 event will be $8.00 per car on Friday & Saturday nights, free Sunday-Thursday nights. This event begins on Friday, November 27th.

Butch Bando's Fantasy of Lights, Alum Creek Campground

Drive Through Lights at Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights!

6. Drive through Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights, a holiday light display at Alum Creek Park Campground any night through January 3, 2020. 5:30 PM – 9:30. Ticket booth closes at 9:00 PM.

7. Take a road trip to visit the PNC Festival of Lights at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. Reservations required.

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 Saturday and Sunday you can take a Holiday Carriage Ride at Easton Town Center!

10. Pick up a Family Gingerbread House Decorating kit from Young Chefs Academy of Gahanna.

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

12. Take photos with Santa at Polaris Fashion Place. Check the link for times. Reservations encouraged.

13. Run the Chase Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot when it’s convenient for you! – use the code “esff” for $6 off your registration!

14. Drive through Light Up Camp at Flying Horse Farms beginning November 27.

15. Dazzling Christmas Lights in Westerville begin on November 27!

16. Take a trip to Cleveland for the Wild Winter Lights Drive Through in Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

17. Visit the Lucy Depp Park Light Show in Powell beginning November 27!

18. Visit the Holiday Lights at Columbus Commons! They will be lit every night from 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM until January 3.


A BIG thanks to WonderLight’s Christmas for sponsoring this post!

Santa’s not the only one coming to town!! “WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio”, a drive-through Christmas light show, is back this year at National Trail Raceway in Hebron, Ohio! This family-friendly event features a 2-mile car ride through more than a million LED lights, all synchronized to music!

Giant Christmas trees, floating snowflakes, shooting stars, dancing candy canes, and (a crowd favorite) enchanting tunnels of lights will illuminate the night! Guests will be able to watch the lights dance around them to traditional and newer, rocking Christmas music from the warmth of their own vehicle.

This dazzling Christmas display is open rain or shine every evening, including holidays, from November 13 to January 3! The cost of admission is super affordable at $7 per person and children 3 years old and under are FREE! OR, you can purchase a Carload Pass for vehicles with up to seven passengers for just $30! Learn more at www.wonderlightschristmas.com!


Holiday Lights in Bicentennial Park, Columbus, Ohio

Holiday Lights in downtown Columbus, Ohio.

Monday, November 23, 2020:

19. Register for and attend Friendsgiving Open Play at We Rock the Spectrum – Columbus

20. Watch Songs for the Community, a free virtual concert presented by The Columbus Foundation by Talisha Holmes. 

Christmas tree made of lights at WonderLight's Christmas in Ohio

Lights at WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020:

21. Attend the North Market Tuesday Before Thanksgiving Market for all your Thanksgiving needs!

22. Pick up a Weekly Take & Make Craft at Grandview Heights Public Library.

23. Pick up some food from SmokeOut BBQ & Catering in Whitehall Community Park during Heartland Bank Food Truck Days.

24. Pick up a free from Works@Home STEM Mini-Kit Giveaway at Mary E Babcock Library from 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM. First come, first served.

hanging holiday decor at Franklin Park Conservatory, Columbus, Ohio

Holiday Decor at Franklin Park Conservatory.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020: 

25. Go skating during Schools Out Skate at Skate Zone 71.

26. Attend Songs for the Community, a free virtual concert presented by The Columbus Foundation by Popgun.

27. Skate for $5 at the Thanksgiving Eve Glow Skate at Skate Zone 71.

28. Skate for $5 at the Thanksgiving Eve Family Skate at United Skates of America.

Blendon Woods Metro Park, Columbus, Ohio

Blendon Woods Metro Park

Thursday, November 26, 2020, THANKSGIVING DAY:

Happy Thanksgiving!

29. Enjoy a Thanksgiving Skate at Skate Zone 71.

Trees at Wildlights at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Wildlights at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Friday, November 27, 2020:

Black Friday doesn’t have to mean shopping! Check out shopping ideas plus these other fun things to do!

30. Shop Black Friday Record Store Day at Spoonful Records.

31. Attend BLACK FRIDAY Record Store Day 2020 at Used Kids Records.

32. Play Grandview Heights-OPOLY by visiting stores and shops in Grandview Heights.

33. Another chance to shop Black Friday – Record Store Day at Lost Weekend Records

34. Pick up a Take & Make Kit: Leaf Garland at either branch of Southwest Public Libraries!

35. Shop Black Friday Weekend at Discount Fashion Warehouse.

36. Support Black owned businesses at Black Out Weekend at The Filipinos Centre.

37. Attend the BLACK FRIDAY MOMS RETREAT at AR Workshop Grove City for lunch, snacks, prizes, drinks and more while you complete a regular sign of your choice, 8 Christmas ornaments and a mini tray.

38. Get your skates on for Black Friday Roller Skating at Skate Zone 

39. Sign up for the Hootie Christmas Family Friendly Paint Class at Pinot’s Palette.

40. Shop Holidaze 2020 in the barn at Blystone Farm LLC.

41. Eat and skate at the FREE Dinner Skate at Skate Zone 71!

42. Join Poppy, Branch & DJ Suk at Troll Pizza Skate at Skate Zone 71!

43. Take a break from the kids and skate at Thanksgiving Break Adult Night at United Skates of America!

Christmas Trees at HTH Farm Market, Columbus, Ohio

HTH Farm Market

Saturday, November 28, 2020:

44. Shop in your jammies during the NYMCM + BrewDog Holiday Virtual Craft Market!

45. Pick up a Take & Make Kit: Comfort Me with Coloring Pages at either branch of Southwest Public Libraries!

46. Shop for fresh produce at the Franklinton Farm Stand.

47. Get out your skates for $5.00 Skating at Skate Zone 71.

48. Support Black owned businesses at Black Out Weekend at The Filipinos Centre.

49. Start your holiday shopping at the Handmade Market in Powell at Nocterra Brewing Co.

50. Attend a Bird of Prey Presentation at Mohican State Park Lodge.

The word "Rejoice" in lights at Butch Bando's Fantasy of Lights in Columbus, Ohio

Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights

Sunday, November 29, 2020:

51. Support Black owned businesses at Black Out Weekend at The Filipinos Centre.

52. Sing, Dance and More at Mommy, Me and Mrs Claus with Paulettes Princess Parties.

53. Shop and visit with Santa at the New Albany Oakland Nursery Holiday Event with Cousins Maine Lobster.

54. Attend the Holiday Open House in Worthington which includes horse-drawn carriage rides, live music, photos with Santa and a tree lighting each half hour beginning at 6:00 PM. 

55. Sign up for Mr. & Mrs. Claus Zoom Visits on Sunday!

56. Attend the Granville Village Tree Lighting.

57. Adults only can skate at Skate Zone 71 Sundays!

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!*

 


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Mark Your Calendar: The Nutcracker

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The Nutcracker is synonymous with the holidays! Maybe you already see it every year or you’re looking to start a special tradition with your family. Seeing The Nutcracker in the beautiful Ohio Theater is a memorable experience! It’s a Christmas memory of mine and I am looking forward to seeing it again this year! To celebrate, I’m giving away a 4 pack of tickets to The Nutcracker on my Facebook page!

This post is written in partnership with BalletMet and the following information and photos have been provided by BalletMet.

Central Ohio’s most beloved holiday tradition since 1974 — BalletMet’s The Nutcracker — will once again be presented from Dec. 8 to 24 at the historic Ohio Theatre. Set to Tchaikovsky’s original score performed by the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, the ballet is choreographed by former BalletMet Artistic Director Gerard Charles.

“This is our 40th anniversary season at BalletMet and the one constant production we’ve brought every year to our fans has been ‘The Nutcracker.’ We love the opportunity to perform in front of tens of thousands of Central Ohioans each year with this beloved production,” said BalletMet Artistic Director Edwaard Liang. “It’s wonderful to have our professional company and our academy students working together to create this show for Central Ohio.”

The tale of the imaginative Clara, the nutcracker who turns into a prince, the Mouse King and the Sugarplum Fairy, will feature a large cast including BalletMet’s professional dancers from both its companies – BalletMet and BalletMet 2, along with 152 students from the BalletMet Academy.  Each performance will have more than 122 characters onstage – including academy students in the roles of pages, party children, mice, and soldiers performing alongside BalletMet’s renowned professionals.

“Approximately 27,000 people came to our performances last year, and we look forward to delighting even more patrons with our 40th anniversary Nutcracker performance this year,” said BalletMet Executive Director Sue Porter. “Attending ‘The Nutcracker’ is a family holiday tradition here in Central Ohio, and the cast and staff make the choreography, the costumes and the sets come alive to make it a truly magical experience.”

Dec. 8 to 24, 2016 | Ohio Theatre

Friday, 12/8 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, 12/9 1 p.m. & 5:30 p.m.
Sunday, 12/10 1 p.m. & 5:30 p.m.
Friday, 12/15 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, 12/16 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, 12/17 12 p.m. & 5:30 p.m.
Wednesday, 12/20 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, 12/21 7:30 p.m.
Friday, 12/22 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, 12/23 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m
Sunday, 12/24 2 p.m.

Ticket prices range from $29 to $93 and can be purchased at the CAPA Ticket Center (39 E. State St.) and online at ticketmaster.com. To purchase tickets by phone, please call (614) 469-0939 or (800) 745-3000.

ABOUT BALLETMET 

Renowned for its versatility and innovative repertory, BalletMet ranks among the nation’s 20 largest ballet companies.

Since its inception in 1978, BalletMet has made the commission and performance of new works a core organizational priority, with more than 150 World Premieres and hundreds of Company Premieres performed throughout its history. BalletMet stages 60 to 70 performances each year at home and on tour. In the past, the company toured 28 U.S. states and internationally to Russia, Poland, Egypt, Spain and Canada.

BalletMet’s Academy has also been recognized as an institution of local and national stature. It offers hundreds of classes to roughly 1,700 students, ages 3 to 95, each year. Students in our Intensive, Boys and Trainee Programs gain invaluable training and experience, including the opportunity to dance on stage alongside the company’s professional dancers.

BalletMet developed DanceReach, a series of educational and outreach programs serving nearly 30,000 people annually. The DanceReach program offers up to 60 scholarships each year to talented youth, many from minority and underserved groups, who could not otherwise participate in dance training.

For more information, visit www.BalletMet.org.

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ICYMI: 10 of Our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions


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What Should We Do This Weekend? March 10-12, 2017

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1. St. Patrick’s Day Craft at Tree of Life Play Cafe

When: Friday, March 10, 2017
Time: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Location: 3708 Fishinger Blvd, Hilliard, OH 43026
Phone: 614-363-4041

Come in for a St. Patrick’s Day themed craft and snack!

2. Fun Friday at Columbus Metropolitan Library, Karl Road Branch

When: Friday March 10, 2017
Time: 3:30 PM – 6:00 PM
Location: 5590 Karl Rd., Columbus, OH 43229
Phone: 614-645-2275

This program helps school-aged kids find their S.P.A.R.K.!

3. Square Dance at Stratford Ecological Center

When: Friday, March 10, 2017
Time: 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Location: 3083 Liberty Rd, Delaware, OH 43015
Phone: 740-363-2548

The whole family can participate in traditional square dances, novelty and folk dances! Recommended for school aged children. $5/person.

4. Spring Fling at Oakland Nursery

When: Saturday, March 11 – Sunday, March 19, 2017
Time: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Location: 1156 Oakland Park Ave., Columbus, OH 43224
Phone: 614-268-3511

This week long Spring Fling includes workshops, sales and family-friendly events! There will be a Kid’s Carnival on March 11th and March 18th from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM.  On Saturday, March 11, from 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM, you can see The Bug Man!

5. Spring Scavenger Hunt at Homestead Metro Park

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: 4675 Cosgray Rd., Hilliard, OH 43026
Phone: 614-508-8111

Families can pick up a scavenger hunt at the nature center, look for signs of animals getting ready for spring and turn it in for a small prize! Appropriate for ages 3-10.

6. Tales @ 10 at Westerville Public Library

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Location: 126 S. State St., Westerville, OH 43081
Phone: 614-882-7277

This family-oriented story time is geared toward ages 2-6. There will be stories, songs, play and more!

7. Liberty Tree Artisan Market at Liberty Tree Elementary School

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Location: 6877 Sawmill Pkwy., Powell, OH 43065

There will be over 40 vendors at this annual market! There will be a free make and take craft station and photo booth for kids! Admission is a donation of your choice which benefits the Liberty Tree Elementary School PTO.

8. Commit To Be Fit Expo at Ohio Expo Center

When: Saturday & Sunday, March 11 & 12, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Location: 717 E 17th Ave., Columbus, OH 43211

This free expo presented by 10TV is focused on helping families live healthier lives! Activities include a giant rock wall, vendors, events like Kids Yoga and a Baby Race and the opportunity to learn how to make healthy snacks for kids! See the entire list of events by clicking on the link.

9. Blooms and Butterflies Opening Day at Franklin Park Conservatory

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Daily
Location: 1777 E. Broad St. Columbus, OH 43203
Phone: 614-715-8000

Saturday is opening day for Blooms and Butterflies! Watch butterflies be released in the Pacific Island Water Garden! From 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM, children can decorate a butterfly house to take home. $4 per butterfly house.

10. Kids Club at Michaels Stores

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: your local Michaels Store

For $2, kids ages 3 and up can make their own Fairy House!

11. Odd Squad Live at Ohio Theatre

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 2:00 PM
Location: 39 E State St, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: CAPA office: 614-469-0939

This interactive performance will include new music, action and the opportunity to put STEM skills to the test!

12. Celebrate Lego Batman at Barnes and Noble

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 4:00 PM
Location: your local Barnes and Noble

Kids can make their very own LEGO Batman Speedwagon and collect limited edition trading cards! This event is while supplies last!

13. Family Night at Paper Moon Art Studio

When: Saturday, March 11, 2017
Time: 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Location: 4145 N High St., Columbus, OH 43214
Phone: 614-332-9149

The second Saturday of each month, Paper Moon Art Studio stays open late for Family Night! This Saturday’s theme is Mardi Gras Fun! Call ahead to reserve your spot as space may be limited. $25/family.

14. Troll Roll at Skate Zone 71

When: Sunday, March 12, 2017
Time: 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM & 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Location: 4900 Evanswood Dr., Columbus, OH 43229
Phone: 614-846-5626

Skate and take pictures with the Trolls! There will be games and prizes!

15. Salamander Hike at Glacier Ridge Metro Park

When: Sunday, March 12, 2017
Time: 2:00 PM
Location: 9801 Hyland Croy Rd., Plain City, OH 43064
Phone: 614-971-5211

Families can take a hike to discover salamanders and other amphibians at a vernal pool where they lay their eggs. See the link for recommendations on what to wear and what to expect!


Thanks to Goldfish Swim School for sponsoring this post!

Goldfish Swim School offers perpetual, year-round swim lessons for kids ages 4 months to 12 years old. Our pools are warm and inviting (90 degrees) and our class sizes are small (4:1) so kids receive the personalized attention from our Ellis-trained swim instructors. Our curriculum focuses on water safety so we teach kids at all levels how to be safe in and around water. Goldfish Swim School has two Central Ohio locations, in Dublin and Westerville, and for more information, visit http://westerville.goldfishswimschool.com and http://dublin.goldfishswimschool.com.

Want to sponsor What Should We Do This Weekend? click here!

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ICYMI: 2 Great Metro Park Nature Centers for Columbus Kids

*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!*


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