The T-Town Edition
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in and around the Tuscaloosa and Northport area! While we had one of the most beautiful fall seasons, the leaves have now fallen and there’s a slight chill in the air. We now turn to some of our most beloved holiday events of the year. In this edition, we’ll share a few of our favorite festivities, so get your scarves, grab your friends and family, and get ready to have a magnificent time!
Tuscaloosa Tinsel Trail
benefiting Tuscaloosa’s One Place
Beloved by all, the Tuscaloosa Tinsel Trail has become a hallmark of the holiday season in West Alabama. Nearly 200 festive trees, combined with the ice skating rink at Government Plaza, allow anyone who visits the opportunity to create traditions that make you feel right at home. Feel the joy of the holiday spirit and select your favorite trees as you stroll through Government Plaza. The Tinsel Trail runs through January 17th.
Check out all of the fun activities taking place along the trail and learn more here!
Location: Government Plaza – 2106 6th St, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
Parking: Free parking is available on-site in the City’s parking deck.
Holidays on the Plaza
ice skating fun and more
Skate the night away and cherish this delightful cold weather with your friends and family in style. Whether it’s your first-time skating or you’re a seasoned professional, you’re bound to have a blast out on the ice as you overlook the Tinsel Trail – all located within Government Plaza. We are so thankful that the City of Tuscaloosa hosts this for all to enjoy this time of year!
For more information, hours, and tickets, click here.
Tip: Don’t forget to bring socks for the skates that are provided.
Location: Government Plaza – 2106 6th St, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
Parking: Free parking is available on-site in the City’s parking deck.
45th Annual West Alabama Christmas Parade
super heroes celebrating Christmas
The 45th annual West Alabama Christmas Parade is happening at 6:30 pm on Monday, December 6th. This parade, put on each year by the Tuscaloosa County Park and Recreation Authority, is one of the biggest Christmas parades in the state! Get bundled up and prepare for an amazing parade through Downtown Tuscaloosa. This year’s grand marshals include Jheovanny Gomez, Nancie Blewitt, and Pam Parker.
A tree lighting ceremony will take place on the steps of the Tuscaloosa County Courthouse prior to the parade at 5:15 pm.
To get all the details, visit their website here!
To view the parade map, click here.
a victorian Christmas celebration in historic downtown Northport
Dickens Downtown is hosted by the Merchants of Historic Downtown Northport, and it is a FREE family event celebrating the Christmas spirit and the joy of giving. At 5 pm on December 7th, attendees can expect live caroling performances, Father Christmas, snow machines, a tree lighting, and live artist demonstrations. In addition, excerpts of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens will be read at Shirley Place and hundreds of people will be dressed in Victorian-era costumes inspired by the popular novel.
For more information about Dickens Downtown, check this out!
Location: Main Avenue in Historic Downtown Northport
Hotel Capstone’s Jingle Bar
a hotel bar filled with the Christmas Spirit
Get toasty with the elves at Hotel Capstone. Join them for a SELFIE-worthy explosion of Christmas decor, elf-approved holiday cocktails, and magical moments with friends! Book your office party or just grab a group of loved ones for a festive evening of holiday cheer! This will be open until January 2!
For more information visit here.
Check Out These Additional Events!
|– Dec. 5 at 3 pm: Tinsel Trail Pet Night|
– Dec. 10 at 6 pm: Tinsel Trail Family Night
– Dec. 10 at 7 pm: Alabama Choir School Winter Concert, Moody Music Bldg. Purchase tickets here.
– Dec. 12 at 2 and 6:30 pm: The Nutcracker, presented by the Tuscaloosa Community Dancers at
the Bama Theatre
– Dec. 13 at 7 pm: Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra Annual Holiday Concert, UA School of Music.
Purchase tickets here!
– Dec. 16 at 6 pm: Movie by Moonlight Drive-In, supporting DCH Foundation. Learn more here.
Tonight, Druid City Brewing Company will be hosting their 2020 Night Cap Livestream as a means for any and everybody to enjoy a night of live-performed music via social media! This event was pulled together as a safe way for music lovers to enjoy live music from the comfort and safety of their own via social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube). Although the event is free, viewers are encouraged to donate to the DCBC Moving fund to help the brewery in its plan to move across the parking lot to a larger space.
The brewery is currently one of the smaller taprooms in Tuscaloosa, but that is no indication of their popularity. DCBC has a fiercely loyal fan club and plays host to many patrons throughout the week, hosting comedy open mic nights, live music, and of course, trivia nights! The brewery has made plans to expand to this larger space as 2020 has made the smaller location difficult to accommodate all the well-loved regulars of Druid City. This live, virtual event is a means for the brewery to continue expanding while offering the incredible live music we have been craving since the beginning of all the COVID chaos!
Here are five reasons you should join in on the virtual fun tonight, December 18th from 7 pm to 1 am:
- Enjoy live performed music from the safety of your own home. The event is accessible via social media on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube starting at 7 pm. While using these social media platforms, be sure to use every day social media etiquette when interacting with the performers or other viewers!
- Support the Druid City Brewing Company taproom in its goal to move to a larger space. DCBC is accepting donations via Venmo at @DCBC_moving and on CashApp and Paypal at @DCBCMoving. These donations will be going directly to the brewery to help with the cost of moving to a larger space where patrons can continue enjoying their favorite craft beers while staying safely distanced from one another!
- Discover the over 20 musical acts that will be performing. All acts have been laid out on the Facebook event page above and feature a range of different styles and genres. While there may be some names you recognize, there will be plenty of names that you will be excited to learn more about! This is an incredible opportunity to both support these bands with your ears and maybe discover a new favorite band to listen to.
- Get a tour of the future taproom location hosted by the bartenders themselves! Amidst the music and entertainment of the evening, there will be a guided tour of the new Druid City location just right across the parking lot from their previous location. This tour will be guided by your favorite DCBC bartenders and will give you a layout of what future evenings out will look like!
- In addition to the Friday night event, enjoy a 24-hour stream of the concert again on Christmas Day! Some may not be able to attend this Friday evening, so the crew over at Druid City will be using the Christmas holiday as a way to re-showcase all the incredible talented featured during the Night Cap. This live stream will be available via the same social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube) and start at midnight Christmas Eve to midnight on Christmas Night.
Log onto Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube on Friday night to enjoy an evening of music from all around! If you are not able to attend the live stream but still want to donate to the fundraiser, the brewery is also accepting donations now on Venmo: DCBC_moving and on CashApp and Paypal at DCBCMoving. So enjoy the night in, pour a glass of your favorite beverage – maybe even a Druid City Brewing Company brew – and relax to an evening of live-performed music.
Written by: Will Baggett
The best time of year is steadily approaching and it seems that the gift list is growing longer by the second. That’s where we come in to save the day. Over the next few weeks, we will be sharing some stellar local shops that will make this year’s Christmas shopping a breeze. Not only will this guide save you loads of time, but it’s also a way to show your love and support for the many phenomenal local businesses in Tuscaloosa! Want your favorite shop featured? Send us a direct message and let us know!
For your Brewery Buds…
There is always one kind of gift that gets put to good use with just about every recipient: alcohol. Whether you’re searching for your favorite IPA or a unique kind of wine, we have what you’re looking for in Tuscaloosa! Loosa is a spectacular local bar that offers 63-Taps that you can drink on-premise, or fill up in a growler and take home. They always keep 30 of the freshest draft beers from Alabama breweries plus rare beers from all over on tap. If alcohol isn’t the direction you were thinking, check out their T-shirts, hats, and glassware! Whether you’re a local or a first-time visitor a souvenir is always a great little reminder of your experience here in T-Town.
For the Evermoving Explorers…
Although the temperatures are getting lower and lower, it is still important to stay active outside whether it is to exercise or for other sporting purposes! Staying outside and distanced is a safe and healthy way to enjoy activities with friends and family, so for all those outdoorsy companions, check out Woods and Water or Wagner’s. Woods and Water is a store that fills every outdoorsy person’s fantasies, whether for hunting, fishing, or other assorted outdoor activities! A local shoe store, Wagner’s, has another seasonal gift guide for everyone to put a holiday spring in their loved ones’ step this season! Browse through the wide selection of shoes and active outerwear divided into for him, for her, for girls, or for boys sections.
For your Foodie Friends…
Wheww… Where do we even start? To gift a delightful dining experience and incredible Italian cuisine check out the local favorite Depalmas! If a brunch date is more your style, gift your friend with mimosas and a view at River, or with a Southern-styled breakfast at The Waysider. For that unpredictable foodie friend, a Cravings gift card can go a long way. The city’s one-stop-shop for specialty candy, craft beer, wine, dessert, and so much more is located downtown for your convenience.
For the Auspicious Artists…
Bring the artistic wonder of Kentuck Arts Center to family and friends with the power of the Kentuck Festival of the Arts 2020 Virtual Marketplace. This virtual dream come true is available now until December 31st to safely celebrate local artists. With a wide variety of pieces and creations, the Virtual Marketplace is a fabulous way to browse and discover new tastes and trends within the art community all from the safety of your home. Not only is this a safe way to shop, but it also an incredible way to support local artists from around Tuscaloosa and all of West Alabama.
All Fired Up Ceramic Studio offers gift cards for visitors to purchase for their friends and family this upcoming holiday season or year-round for other celebrations! Gifts can come in the shape of gift cards for use at the All Fired Up studio or even take-home kits to move the ceramic fun to enjoy in the safety of your own home! All Fired Up is a delightful spot where you, along with friends or family, can stop by to create and paint your very own pottery creations together. This activity is a relaxing way to both blow off steam and express creativity through shape, color, and design! Visit All Fired Up’s website to learn more about the store and their different gift offerings.
For the Reserved Relaxers…
In the chaos that has been 2020, many people are looking for ways to healthily unwind and enjoy time to themselves or just time in peace and quiet. Tuscaloosa is home to several spots where you can find the gift of “solace” to give to one of your closest companions. Ernest and Hadley offers gift cards, branded gifts, and even store memberships as part of their gift gallery and is sure to provide a thoughtful and easy gift to give a book lover or someone looking to read more heading into the new year. Monarch Espresso Bar is another way to give the gift of peace and quiet by offering gift cards to give to friends and family this holiday season.
Arts and Entertainment
Thursday Concerts on the Rooftop is featuring One Horrible Family this week! Originally a larger band formed two years ago, this group preferred a more intimate trio. All music students at the University of Alabama (one a former student), the group is capable of really any genre but performs mostly R&B, 80s music, and jazz. With most of their experience being in larger bars in Tuscaloosa, they are excited to relax at the Lookout for a night of rhythm and soul. The fun starts at 6 pm, and you do not want to miss this!
Jump into the holiday spirit with the arts at the exclusive Christmas Open House at Kentuck’s Gallery Shop! Enjoy 10% OFF IN-STORE AND ONLINE! Join the holiday fun at Kentuck’s Christmas Kickoff Open House from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday, November 7, and from 12 to 4 pm on Sunday, November 8. Support local artists this holiday season and find unique gifts for all of your loved ones! Use code CHRISTMASOPEN2020 for 10% off our online shop!
Fun for the Youngsters
On Friday Para will be hosting Kids Night Out at 5:30 pm at the McDonald Hughes Community Center! The Kids Night Out event will keep the kiddos busy for 3 hours of educational and recreational fun! Pizza, juice, and dessert will be available for all participants to enjoy throughout the event. There will be swimming so make sure to pack swimwear, dry clothes, and a towel. Life jackets will be provided when needed. Registration for this fall fling is available here.
The Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa is hosting Sweater Weather on Saturday from 9:30 am- 4 pm. CHOM is a beloved local gem where children explore, create, and discover every time they visit. When they say “hands-on” they really mean it! Learning through play is what our exhibits are all about. This special seasonal extravaganza will include autumn weather science, leaf color experiments, and fantastic fall wreaths! All of these engaging activities are included in admission.
At 7 am this Saturday the farmers market will be open and ready to safely serve you! Handmade treasures galore awaits at the Rivermarket until 12 pm. From scented bath bombs to handmade woodwork you are bound to find something that piques your interest at the farmers market. Face coverings are required for all who wish to go inside and shop and social distancing will be in effect.
Also available on Saturday is an Intro to Vinyasa Workshop at the Yoga Bliss Studio. Vinyasa is a form of active yoga that involves different postures in consecutive succession to offer a more balanced bodily effect. Yoga is an activity that is diverse in its styles and Vinyasa yoga is considered to be one of the most dynamic styles you can enjoy! Yoga Bliss is located on Queen City Avenue and hosts several classes a week, including many similar introduction classes for all yoga beginners! For more information about the Vinyasa Workshop, visit the Yoga Bliss Facebook event page.
The House Plant Collective bus will be making a special appearance at Druid City Brewing on Sunday from 2- 5 pm. At House Plant Collective the mission is to create Birmingham’s first mobile plant store while providing the community education needed for the plants to thrive. Shop plants, grab a beer, and enjoy your serene Sunday supporting local!
Will Baggett & Jamie Hoven
The holiday season is in full swing here in Tuscaloosa! This weekend you can enjoy live entertainment while you ice skate at Holidays on the River, experience Christmas Around the World at the Children’s Hands-On Museum, Bowl with Santa at Bowlero, and enjoy Tuscaloosa’s night-life with Christmas parties all over town!
A Kip Tyner Christmas
‘Tis the season of Christmas classics! Join City Councilman Kip Tyner this Friday for an evening of live entertainment and Christmas cheer, hosted by the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater and Holidays on the River. Come celebrate with family and friends while enjoying live performances, ice skating, music and more! You can buy tickets to ice skate at holidaysontheriver.com. This event will be fun for the whole family!
Christmas Around the World at CHOM!
On Saturday, find out how different cultures celebrate Christmas Around the World at the Children’s Hands-On Museum! There will be special games and crafts throughout the museum that explore different regions of the world. The Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa creates an environment where children can explore, design, and discover every time they visit. When you hear “hands-on,” they really mean it! Learning through play is what the exhibits are all about, and kids are encouraged to touch, feel, and play in the displays. Three floors of fun wait for families and offer newborns through 13 year old’s a space perfect for them.
Bowl with Santa
Bowlero is a new bowling ally in Tuscaloosa that features fresh lanes, a state-of-the-art arcade, a huge bar, and an incredible menu. This Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. you can enjoy all of the amenities Bowlero has to offer and meet Santa! Catch the man himself while he’s in Tuscaloosa to map out his route!
Christmas Parties in Tuscaloosa
If you’re in the mood to celebrate, you’re in luck! You can find Christmas parties all over Tuscaloosa, all weekend long. Here is a list of bars you can find them at:
Jingle Bar: Pop-Up Holiday Happy Hour Experience
Ugly Christmas Sweater Party
1831 Christmas Party
Tab & the Mojo Rockin’ Country Christmas
Roxy’s Holiday Party
We have a lot going on throughout the upcoming fall months and are excited to share more. Give us a follow on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and future events. We can’t wait to see you around Tuscaloosa!
|Business||Christmas Eve||Christmas Day|
|301 Bistro, Bar & Beer Garden||11am-3pm||closed|
|Another Broken Egg||7am-2pm||closed|
|Buffalo Phil’s Wings||closed||closed|
|Depalma’s Italian Cafe||closed||closed|
|Dreamland BBQ – Tuscaloosa||til 3pm||closed|
|Dreamland BBQ – Northport||til 3pm||closed|
|Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers||10:30am-4pm||closed|
|Full Moon BBQ||til 3pm||closed|
|Heat Pizza Bar||closed||closed|
|Iguana Grill||regular hours||closed|
|Jalapeno’s Mexican Grill||11am-3pm||closed|
|Jim ‘N Nicks BBQ||10:30-3pm||closed|
|La Hacienda El Mexicana||closed||closed|
|Levee Bar & Grill||closed||closed|
|Miss Dots Tuscaloosa||closed||closed|
|Moe’s Original BBQ||closed||closed|
|Mooyah Burgers Fries & Shakes||unknown||closed|
|Mr. Chen’s||regular hours||closed|
|Mugshots Grill and Bar||closed||closed|
|Pyro’s Fire Fresh Pizza||10:30-2pm||closed|
|Ruan Thai Exotic Thai Cuisine Rest.||closed||closed|
|Southern Ale House||closed||closed|
|Surin of Thailand||regular hours||closed|
|Sweet Home Food Bar||closed||closed|
|Swen Chinese Restaurant||closed||closed|
|Taco Mama||til 4||closed|
|The Front Porch||closed||closed|
|Zoe’s Kitchen (all locations)||closed||closed|
The big snow last weekend has really gotten into the holiday spirit. There are classic wintery plays being shown, ice skating and more to celebrate this special time of year with your friend and family. Don’t forget to tag @VisitTuscaloosa on Instagram when you post your holiday adventures around Tuscaloosa. We may use your photo and give you a shoutout!
The Actor’s Charitable Theatre presents the classic tale of adventure and magic with The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe all weekend long. Come to the Bama Theatre and take a walk through the old wardrobe into the magical world of Narnia this Friday-Sunday. Times are as follows:
Visit the www.theactonline.com for tickets and enjoy the show!
Alabama’s Women’s Basketball team is back in action this Sunday against out-of-conference foe SMU. The Tide is 4-0 at home this season so come be a part of what could be a special season for this team, who is building something special after wins over Lipscomb and Utah. The game tips at 2:00 in Coleman Coliseum and tickets are only $5.
There is nothing more perfect on wintery weekends than holiday events. Tuscaloosa’s Holidays on the River will be open this weekend with special events like a visit from Santa on Friday and Carriage Rides on Saturday. Plus you will have a blast skating at the outdoor ice rink. The rink schedule this weekend is as follows:
Friday- 5-10 with Visit from Santa
Sat- 11 am – 9 p.m. with Carriage Rides
Go to holidaysontheriver.com for more information and a complete schedule of events for the season.
Looking to get your kids in on the holiday action this weekend? Look no further than the Children’s Hands-On Museum. This Saturday from 10-4 will be a Holiday Hoopla! Kids of all ages will be able to go through gift creating stations to make something unique and special for a sibling, friend, parent, or other loved one. Don’t let them miss out on this fun holiday event.
The holiday season would be complete without experiencing the Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol.” Theatre Tuscaloosa will be presenting the Romulus Linney version of this incredible story of a man who learns what Christmas is all about. Shows will run all weekend at the Bean-Brown Theatre at Shelton State:
Visit Theatretusc.com for tickets!
We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events below, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements