Lights, entertainment, and holiday hullabaloos take center stage at this festive time. There are so many celebrations that it’s hard to choose favorites, but below are our 12 things to do in Michigan in December 2018.
Dec 7-Dec 18 Christmas Cabaret – Augusta
If you’re looking to get in the holiday spirit, then a visit to The Barn Theatre is sure to do the trick. This heartwarming show is perfect for the whole family, and filled with old fashioned Christmas joy. Consequently, it is sure to create wonderful memories that will last a lifetime. Tickets are $30 for adults and $25 for children 12 and under. The ticket price includes a piece of pie and coffee, hot cocoa, or pop.
Dec 7-15 Heritage Holidays – Ray Township
There’s something to be said for the magic of an evening stroll on a cold winter’s night. That is especially true when it involves a wooden bridge over a river. During Heritage Holidays at Wolcott Mill Metropark, the entire Historic Center transforms into a magical holiday wonderland. Special guests include majestic Clydesdale horses. Get up close and personal for a seasonal selfie or enjoy a relaxing wagon ride. Admission is $5 per person.
Dec 7-22 A Christmas Story – The Musical – Marine City
It’s hard to turn on the TV in December and not find this pop culture classic movie playing on some channel (and often on a loop). Imagine seeing it come to life with the extra flash and flair of Broadway. For those who haven’t seen it yet, A Christmas Story chronicles young Ralphie Parker as he schemes his way toward the holiday gift of his dreams. which is an official Red Ryder® BB gun. Along the way there’s an outrageous pair of pink bunny pajamas, a maniacal department store Santa, and a triple-dog dare to lick a freezing flagpole. Sound familiar? These are just a few of the bumps in the road that stand between Ralphie and his ultimate Christmas wish.
Dec 8 French Noel – Monroe
Many of the early settlers to Michigan were of French descent. To honor their traditions, River Raisin National Battlefield Park hosts French Noel. It offers a unique glimpse into the lives of early settlers along the River Raisin. They celebrated Christmas from the
late 1700’s until the time of the War of 1812. The free event runs from 11 p.m. – 4 p.m. at River Raisin National Battlefield Park. The festivities include examples of typical French cuisine, and activities such as table games, crafts, and the yule log tradition.
Dec 8 Dark Horse Brewing 4 Elf Party – Marshall
We all know that Santa’s couldn’t deliver all those Christmas miracles without the help of his beloved elves. This party is an homage to the North Pole’s hardest workers. Guests are invited to come dressed in their own unique interpretation of an elf. It’s named after Dark Horse’s seasonal winter warmer spiced ale. The malty cinnamon brew is sure to be flowing. Try some and enjoy one of the best brewery parties of the year. Entry is $5 at the door, or free for those who come dressed in the latest “Elfinwear.” Specialty bottle releases, scrumptious food and live music, round out the celebration.
Dec 11 An Evening with Mitch Albom – East Lansing
Journey to Spartan country to partake in a special event with celebrated author and journalist Mitch Albom. Tickets are $35 and include a copy of Albom’s latest novel, The Next Person You Meet in Heaven. You may even be able to get your copy signed by the author after the event. The talk starts at a7 p.m. in Wharton’s Cobb Great Hall. All proceeds from this event will fund student scholarships for MSU’s College of Arts and Letters.
Dec 15 Snowmobile the Mighty Mac – St Ignace
This might be literally and figuratively, one of the coolest events in the state. Vintage snowmobiles cross the Mackinac Bridge under their own power. Participating snowmobiles must be outfitted with wheel kits in order to cross the bridge. Additionally, the wheels must be at least two inches wide and have no studs or cleats. Fans of any age are welcome to take in the spectacle, but the snowmobiles must also be 25 years old or older to participate.
Dec 30-31 Great Lakes Invitational Hockey Tournament (GLI) – Detroit
It wouldn’t be December in “Hockeytown” without the GLI, now in its 54th year. This season’s tournament features four Michigan-based schools for only the 15th time in the event’s history. The two-day, single-elimination tournament, has an Upper Peninsula VS Lower Peninsula vibe this year. Michigan Tech and Lake Superior State will join tournament mainstays, Michigan and Michigan State for some fast-paced action. This will mark only the fourth time Lake Superior has played in the tourney, and its first appearance since 1999.
Dec 31 New Year’s Fest – Kalamazoo
Arts take center stage when KZoo welcomes a new year. This spectacle features 24 performing artists in 11 buildings surrounding Bronson Park. Musical genres include classical, rhythm and blues, jazz, bluegrass, and Christian contemporary. You’ll also find magicians, clowns, jugglers, and storytellers. Admission is $5 for everyone over 4 years of age, and the celebration runs from 5:30 pm to midnight.
Dec 31 Cherry Drop – Traverse City
Inspired by New York City, lots of towns drop a ball to ring in a new year. That’s not how it goes in T.C., of course. Naturally, this tip of the mitt town, salutes a new turn around the sun with the drop of a cherry. This Front Street fiesta begins at 10 p.m. The cherry drops at midnight, followed by fireworks. Admission is free, but guests are asked to start off the year charitably with a cash or check donation to Salvation Army.
Dec 31 The Drop – Detroit
If it’s a cherry in T.C., then why not a giant D in Detroit? Detroit’s version of a drop party will feature multiple balloon drops and confetti storms. Streets will be closed and activities begin at 4:00 p.m. Expect live entertainment, fire pits, a dedicated kids zone, and some surprises.
Dec 1-30 New Year’s Eve Ball Drop – Marquette
Similarly, the tradition of gathering to watch something drop to ring in the new year continues in Marquette. That town will mark its 30th such celebration this year. The symbolic ball drop is poised atop the Masonic Square Mall at 128-130 W. Washington Street. The streets beneath are closed to traffic for a family-friendly welcome to 2019. Revelers will find multiple bars and restaurants eager to host them.
Join the conversation on social media and let us know which of our 12 things to do in Michigan in December 2018, you got a chance to enjoy. Tag @BuyMichiganNow in your posts. For our things to do in Michigan next month and other travel tips, be sure to visit our Michigan Tourism page.