25 things to do this Winter in DFW

25 things to do this Winter in DFW

What can we do this Winter in DFW?

It’s that time of the year when you try to fill your calendar with fun holiday activities and local events for the whole family. 

25 things to do this Winter in DFW

And as usual, Plano Moms wants to help you get ready and to guide you in trying out the perfect family fun Winter Bucket List idea, we created the following list of must-do holiday activities and events and things to do with Kids this Winter.

The weather in Texas can be unpredictable most of the time, but hope we can enjoy the season without Ice on the Roads, cold weather and mulled wine in our hands.

So, what does a normal North Texas winter mean to our visitors and us?  Well, a better than good chance to see most of the sights and enjoy each event without the nuisance of inclement weather. 

Don’t forget to get your photos with Santa!

Here are some of the must-do activities for kids of all ages around the DFW area.

Dallas Arboretum

The 12 Days of Christmas at Night – November 13 through December 29 

The 12 Days of Christmas display, is one of the most beautiful exhibits and it is Dallas’ beloved holiday traditions. It features 25-foot-tall Victorian-style gazebos that will come to life, which depicts the scenes from the traditional carol. Each gazebo features movement to represent the different beloved characters – Three French Hens, Twelve Drummers Drumming, and Seven Swans a Swimming, to name a few. The historic DeGolyer House is also decorated in a European style with greenery and fruit, along with a collection in each room item one finds at Christmas markets such as angels, hand-carved wooden Santas, nativity scenes, or snow globes.

Gaylord Texan Resort

ICE! and Lone Star Christmas – November 15 through January 5, 2020

 Yes, this is probably one of the most popular attractions for families during the holiday season. With 2 million  lights, 15,000 ornaments, an amazing 54-foot-tall Christmas tree, an 8-foot-tall gingerbread house, Santa’s Wild Workshop Snow Tubing, Cookies and Milk with Mrs. Claus and ICE! carved from more than 2 million pounds of ice, this is definitely a must-do activity.

And, don’t miss all of the other exclusive holiday events and attractions taking place this year! See a complete list of all the ICE! activities, purchase tickets, parking & directions, ICE!®, SNOW tubing slides and LoneStar Christmas.

Ice Exhibit at Gaylord Texan Hotel Grapevine TX

Dallas Holiday Parade

Downtown Dallas – December 7, 2019

The Dallas Holiday Parade regularly draws thousands of people in the streets of downtown Dallas to watch giant balloons, marching bands, floats, dance teams, and Santa and Mrs. Claus. This event has become a holiday tradition for thousands of families throughout DFW.  The parade route steps off at 10 a.m. at Houston and Commerce and travels east on Commerce St., pausing in front of both the Adolphus hotel and the Statler. Be sure to check these things to know before you go.

Check out these great Indoor Play areas

Grapevine – North Pole Express

November 29, 30

December 1, 6, 7, 8, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23

This is a magical experience aboard Grapevine Vintage Railroad’s North Pole Express. A must-do for the whole family! As guests board the decorated Grapevine Vintage Railroad train, Santa’s elves will greet you with a Memory Mug of Santa’s special Frosty Chocolate. And, all guests will enjoy a delicious Christmas cookie on the way to Reindeer Ridge. The best part is when the train arrives at Reindeer Ridge, Mrs. Claus steps on board and presents each child with a “We Believe” silver bell. The train then continues to the North Pole. You can stroll through the snowy North Pole Forest, and visit Santa’s Workshop where Santa, Mrs. Claus, and a cast of jovial elves perform a Broadway-style Christmas performance and share in the kindness of the season.

Check out the Holiday Lights

On display between December 1 – January 1

  •   Neighborhood Drive

So, driving through to some neighborhoods around the DFW area is on many people’s holiday traditions. Get delighted and fascinated with holiday lights at the Deerfield community in Plano. You can even reserve a carriage ride or a Segway tour! Or go to Highland Park neighborhood to experience an extraordinary display of holiday lights. Homeowners or tenants around Highland Park go all out with home decorations every Christmas holiday.

  •   Beautiful Walk

Here are a few places that you can go and have a nice evening walk with your loved ones and enjoy some holiday cheers and find the Best Places in Dallas to see holiday lights.

  1.   Vitruvian Lights at Vitruvian Park is one place to get dazzled with spectacular holiday lights. Opening Friday, November 29, 2019 – Wednesday, January 1, 2020. Beginning November 30, tree lights will be on daily from 5 pm – 11 pm.
  2.   Klyde Warren Park and the neighboring lights around the AT&T Performing Arts Center in the Arts District. Free.
  3.   Dallas Zoo Lights, nights shine brighter at the Zoo, it transforms into a winter wonderland with over one million lights after the animals head in for the evening.
  4.   Christmas in the Square in Frisco. This event draws over 750,000 visitors annually; your whole crew can come and enjoy the spectacular show. The Holiday lights and music will run daily from November 23 to December 31, 6-10 pm. This show is free to the public.
  5.   Shops at Legacy Holiday Lights are as beautiful as the places that you can visit while you walk around this shopping street. During the holiday season, the tree-lined streets will light up and makes this place a winter wonderland! It is a perfect place for a stroll with friends and family, and you can shop and dine too.
  6.   Prairie Lights This a unique experience where you get to drive and walk. The sure thing is you will be dazzled with 4 million lights set along 2 miles of the path.You will find food, gifts, Santa, a brand-new indoor Holiday Show, and the Holiday Magic Lighted Walk-Through Forest at the Holiday Village. And your drive ends with an animated light tunnel – the perfect finale that you will never forget.

Galleria Dallas Ice Skating Rink

Galleria Dallas Tree Lighting Celebration

November 29 & 30 – Patrick Chan

December 7 – Ryan Bradley

December 14 – Mirainagasu

December 21 – Kaetlyn Osmond

Yes… it is the country’s tallest Christmas tree in the middle of the Galleria Dallas’ Ice Skating Rink! The iconic Christmas tree showcase almost a half-million lights, over 10,000 ornaments, and a 100-pound, 10-foot-tall LED star. And, it performs several times a day, as it lit up with choreography and holiday music.

Check out these Local Events

The Trains at North Park

Opening November 16

Celebrating more than 30 years benefiting the Ronald McDonald House (RHMD) and presented by Bank of Texas, The Trains at Northpark has become a Christmas tradition. This is most detailed exhibit of miniature toy trains in Texas which features scenes from across America. You get to see the New York City’s Time Square and Grand Central Station, the Dallas’ Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, The State Fair of Texas, The Cotton Bowl, Nasher Sculpture Center, The Perot Museum and Southern Methodist University.The White House, the Grand Canyon and a lot more.

Watch The Nutcracker Ballet Performance

Chamberlain School of Ballet – Eisemann Center – November 29, 30, Dec. 1

Texas Ballet Theater – Winspear Opera House November 29 – December 8

One of the most magical family Christmas tradition is watching The Nutcracker Ballet performance. Experience the majestic journey of Clara and her Nutcracker Prince as they travel throughout a winter wonderland to meet the Sugar Plum Fairy in the Kingdom of Sweets. It will make you want to learn to dance ballet!

Here are must-go events during the holiday season and some Craft fairs to check out .

Neath the Wreath Holiday Gift Market

November 7 – 10 – This five-day holiday market features the best in unique holiday and home décor and a lot more from over 100 carefully selected merchants. Mark your calendar, and enjoy shopping!

Neath the Wreath

The Shop at Willow Bend Holiday Events

Pizza with Santa at The Shops at Willow Bend

November 8

Animated Christmas Tree in The District

November 8 – January 5. This one-of-a-kind Christmas tree located in The District is synchronized with music and video and is sure to get you in the holiday spirit!

Santa Stroll at The Shops at Willow Bend

November 9.

After indulging in a delicious Chick-Fil-A breakfast, guests can enjoy a stroll from Willow Bend’s Food Court to the new Santa set where they can interact with festive characters, participate in holiday crafts and take photos with the man of the season, Santa! 

Visit with Santa at The Shops at Willow Bend

November 9 – December 24

With illuminated gift boxes featuring more than 200k LED lights and plenty of interactive stations, this brand new, modern version of a classic holiday photo set is sure to be the perfect backdrop for family holiday photos! Click here for pricing. 

Pet Pics with Santa

December 2 – December 6

Deck the paws! Pet parents can bring their fur-babies for a photo opportunity with Santa! This would be a unique Christmas card idea for sure! 

Sounds of the Season 

December 7 -8

Do you hear what I hear? Enjoy the beautiful sounds of the holidays by the Mae Morton Piano Studio and the Richardson Music Teachers Association while you do your holiday shopping.

Soothing Santa 

December 8

Sensory-sensitive children can enjoy time with Santa in a comforting environment outside of Willow Bend’s public hours. This event is sponsored by Behavioral Innovations, Life Skills Autism Academy and Autism Speaks.

Scrooge at the NTPA Repertory Theater

December 20 – 22

Families can enjoy a musical adaptation of A Christmas Carol at NTPA. It’s the perfect reminder to hold those that we love close!

Festival of Lights Menorah Lighting

December 23

Join hundreds as they share the message of the Festival of Lights at the Community Menorah Lighting with the Chabad of Plano/Collin County. 

Cityline Merry Market & Festival

December 7, 12 – 7pm

There will be live music, hot chocolate, fun for the kids and an artisan market of about 20 local makers, artists and shop owners. Bring the family for a fun holiday event!

Celebration of Lights Festival

November 22

Five weeks of events and shopping giveaways beginning November 22 at Watters Creek, Allen.

The Lights at Legacy

November 24

The lights at Legacy is set to start the holiday season in Plano, TX. Enjoy complimentary train rides on the Atmos Energy Christmas Train, caricature artists, face painters, balloon artists, toy soldier stilt walkers, little drummer boys, and a lot more. There will be complimentary food and drink samples from The Shops at some of the Legacy retailers and restaurants. 

Four Seasons Las Colinas Festive Highlights

Fireside Holiday Kick-off Event – December 4

Paper for Water Community Workshop – December 7

Holiday Characters Breakfast – Saturdays – December 7 – 21

Santa in Plano TX

Highland Park Village’s Christmas Lights Celebration and Shopping

December 5 – Kick off your holiday season with style! The event features live performances, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, exclusive store promotions, and special activations with community charity partners.

Deck the Plaza

December 6 – The Texas-sized Christmas Tree Lightning for Downtown Dallas.

CityLine Merry Market and Festival

December 07 – This free event will include all-day live music, hot cocoa and cookies, kid’s activities, and an artisan market with over a dozen of local vendors. Bring the family for a fun holiday event!

Jolly Holly Celebration

December 6 – The City of Allen Annual Christmas Tree Lighting!

Holidays at the Heard

December 13 – 14 – Mark your calendar for this unique event happening at the Heard Museum. You get to see the holiday lights along a half-mile Heard nature trail. It enhances the natural beauty of the park. You will get to experience ten life-size dinosaurs along a nature trail, which makes it so fun for the kids and adults alike.

Heard Museum Dinosaurs in McKinney TX

Dickens in Downtown Plano

December 6 – It is held yearly in the heart of the Historic Downtown Plano Arts District, where you get to enjoy some family fun – live entertainment, delicious food, a variety of attractions, and a visit from Santa. There are also carolers in costume, and the Interurban Museum opens its doors for some Polar Express fun. There are a lot of activities for everyone to enjoy!

Plano Lions Christmas Parade

December 14 – Mark your calendar and save the date for the 2019 holiday parade!  Plan to come early to get a spot. Festive floats, flags, firetrucks, clowns, Santa and more!  Every Plano high school marching band, drill team, cheer squad and JROTC will participate, as well as Boy and Girl Scouts, YMCA Guides/Princesses, church groups and more!   Parade starts in the parking lot of the Plano ISD Administration building.

It will travel west on 15th Street then north on Independence, east on Parkhaven and ends at the Plano Senior High School. Parade lineup begins at 6:30 am, and the parade runs from 9:00 am to 11:00 am.

Check out the The Best Places to See Santa in Collin County

Holiday at the DSO

November 24 – December 31

Dallas Symphony Orchestra

Dark Hour Haunted House Present: WRECK THE HALLS | The Christmas Wars

December 15 – Sentient toys are rising up against their oppressors… Evil Elves. A lonely toy’s wish is granted by an ancient genie bringing life to all the other toys in the world. And they want revenge. So they rise up in arms with the genie, who leads a battle against Krampus and his army of elves. You’re stuck in the middle of this battle royale in a winter wonderland. Who’s side are you on?

Are you ready for the Holidays? There are so many places to go and fun things to do in DFW over the Winter season.


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