The holidays are finally here, cooler weather is rolling in, and the days are shorter. It can seem like there’s so much to do that we miss wonderful events and activities to help us slow down, relax, and take in some much-needed time with our loved ones. The city of Tuscaloosa has a wonderful holiday season planned with plenty of festivities to get you in the spirit. We have everything from a trail of decorated trees to wonderful light shows and parades! And don’t forget to check out some of our great local shops and artists that can be found around town, or to give those reindeer a break, stop by some of our local breweries for a frosty seasonal brew.
Starting Nov 21st
Tuscaloosa Tinsel Trail
Down by the River market, you’ll find over 125 trees decorated by their sponsors. From local businesses, organizations, and people around town, the trail is a part of Tuscaloosa’s One Place org. Dedicated to making a difference in local families lives. Proceeds from the trail are going to support these programs and our community.
Tuscaloosa Children’s Theatre Presents “Elf The Musical Jr.”
Come out and see a classic holiday film come alive in a musical adaption. Join Buddy as he journeys from his adopted life in the North Pole back to find his birth father in New York! The hilarious adventure will run from 7-9 pm at the Bama Theatre.
Candyland Breakfast and Brunch with Santa & Mrs. Claus at CHOM
Join the Claus family and other residents of the North Pole for a festive dance party, Breakfast, and brunch! You can even stay and play in the exhibits and make ornaments!
Breakfasts: 8-9:30 am or 10-11:30 am
Brunch: 12-1:30 pm $15 person
Museum members: $14 person
4 or more: $14 person
Christmas Tree Lighting and 41st Annual West Alabama Christmas Parade
This season, the theme for the parade is “Home for the Holidays”. Join the city as the evening begins with the tree lighting at the Tuscaloosa County Courthouse at 5:15 pm, followed by the parade at 6:30 pm. The Parade will go from downtown along Greensboro Ave. to University Blvd. Our Grand Marshals will be Sandra Baker and David E. Gay, Jr.
Holidays on the River
One of the biggest Holiday traditions in town, we celebrate the season with a wonderfully decorated 60 by 100 ft. outdoor rink. With holiday characters and hourly snow flurries in a Tuscaloosa winter wonderland. Skate along with the young and young at heart alike. Tickets can be purchased online, or at the box office on site. Viewing admission is free. The rink will open on December 6th at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater.
In the historic University Club, “It’s Ornamental” will feature ornaments designed by local artists and University of Alabama sports celebrities. There will be holiday songs by the UA Opera Theatre, and a small silent auction with some surprising items that benefit Turning Point. Join the Club from 7-9 pm!
An annual Victorian holiday celebration known as Dickens Downtown takes place on the first Tuesday night in December in Downtown Northport. Dickens is a community supported gathering to celebrate the true spirit of Christmas involving Theatre Tuscaloosa performing scenes from “A Christmas Carol”, local choirs, the 5th Alabama Regimental Band, a real English Town Crier, father Christmas, and business and neighborhood open houses. Join the activities from 5-8 p.m.
Bama Theatre “Nutcracker” Ballet
Featuring local dancers, the Tuscaloosa Community Singers will present the ballet holiday classic, the Nutcracker. The show will run from December 8th to the 11th.
Theatre Tuscaloosa presents: A Christmas Carol
There is hardly a play more classically festive for the holiday season that Charles Dickens Christmas Carol. Come enjoy this stage adaptation from December 9th through the 18th at Theatre Tuscaloosa.
Jolly Jingles Art Market
The American Christian Academy is hosting the Jolly Jingles Art Market with local artists, handmade gifts, gift-wrapping, food, treats, and musical performances. Santa will also be there to take photos. The market runs from 9am to 4 pm and admission is free!
Tuscaloosa Christmas Afloat
Come down to the banks of the Black Warrior or watch perched high above from the bridges as the river lights up with a light parade and fireworks! The Pirates of the Warrior Recreational Boat Club presents a festive light and fireworks show that can be seen along the river from 5 pm to 8 pm.
Glen Templeton at the Drish House
Head to The Drish House and hear Tuscaloosa native Glen Templeton in his intimate “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” tour on Dec. 17 and 18. A limited number of VIP ticket are available for Dec. 17. During the Saturday show, Glen will perform music from his latest album and on Sunday he will perform gospel and holiday tunes.
Milk and Cookies with Moosie at CHOM
Treat yourself to some milk n cookies with Moosie at 2:30 pm at CHOM! There will be special picnic style milk n cookies while they read Santa COWS!