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The Dayton Mom’s Guide to Holiday Events {2017}

Tis‘ the season for family, hot chocolate, twinkling lights, and tradition.

Is your favorite holiday event on our list? If not, let us know!

Angel Works Bazaar

November 4, 2017


Bring your children and take a ‘Selfie with Santa!’ Shop for special gifts including handcrafted needlework, wreaths, floral delights, Christmas crafts, homemade candies, baked goods, and gourmet specialties such as Terri Lynn nuts, soup, and Peg’s Cajun pickles. Relax with family and friends while savoring a delicious lunch. All proceeds from the bazaar support local, national, and international serve projects.

Wreath Lighting Event at Fairfield Commons

November 10, 2017


This family-friendly event will include free carriage rides, a reindeer petting zoo, face painting, lots of great giveaways and more! Plus watch as a local artist creates a piece of holiday artwork right before your eyes. The event will be located inside and outside of the main mall entrance next to Bravo!.

A Yuletide Winter's Gathering

November 11, 2017

Saturday, 10a-8p & Sunday 12p-6p

Join the Tipp City shopkeepers as they invite you to kick off the winter shopping season with their annual open house, a Tipp City tradition for more than 25 years! The historic district offers more than 35 locally owned boutiques and restaurants with specialties including toys, games, vintage finds and antiques, collectibles, fashions, handmade soaps, home decor, art, jewelry, and books. Round out your day with coffee, tea, dessert and full-service dining at one of the award-winning eateries. Bonuses include free pictures with Santa and horse-drawn carriage rides through the four quaint blocks of Main Street.

Christmas Tree Lighting and Winter Market at Austin Landing

November 11, 2017


From hand crafted items, apparel boutiques, to home baked fresh goodies, there is something for everyone on your shopping list at the Winter Market! Entertainment, face painting and a photo booth… there’s something for the whole family to enjoy during our tree lighting event. Santa will arrive at 6pm with all of his friends, and witness the spectacular Kettering Physician Network Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony at 6:30pm!

Holiday Arts and Crafts Show

November 11, 2017


This popular annual event showcases over 75 vendors throughout Kettering Recreation Complex and Charles I Lathrem Senior Center. Vendors will display their festive holiday decorations and handmade gift items for you to get a start on your shopping.

Admission is free to this one-day show!

Christmas in Historic Springboro

November 17. 2017 - November 19, 2017

Friday 6p-10p; Saturday 10a-9p; Sunday 12p-5p

The Springboro Christmas Festival still features shopping opportunities, with heated tents full of craftsmen and vendors selling unusual gift items, as well as the gift inventory to be found in all the local shops. We still have a parade, with the arrival of Santa and Mrs. Claus, at noon on Saturday, and there is plenty of good festival food all along the street. We still have music and special activities in the Entertainment Tent and strolling musicians and entertainers on the street. Horse-drawn wagons still transport festival-goers from one end of the street to the other.


Christmas Glow at the Land of Illusion

November 17, 2017 - December 30, 2017


A mile-long “Christmas Around the World” drive-thru experience, with over 3 million lights to see from the comfort of your own car. You will also find, a Christmas Village with hot cocoa, a kids craft room and Christmas characters. Santa visits nightly from 6:30-10:30pm.

Christmas Tree Lighting and Parade with Santa at The Greene

November 18, 2017


The magic of the holidays begins at The Greene. This is a great way to kick off the holiday season and welcome Santa to Dayton!

Trebein Holiday Bazaar

November 18. 2017


50+ crafters and vendors to kick off your holiday shopping right. Bring the kids for pictures with Santa, kids holiday shoppe and more.

Sugarplum Festival of Trees

November 18, 2017 - November 19, 2017


The Sugarplum Festival of Trees is an annual holiday extravaganza that kicks off the holiday season for the Miami Valley. Browse and bid on the fabulously decorated Christmas trees and pick up some homemade Christmas gifts and decorations including wreaths, ornaments and more!

Hometown Holiday Walk

November 19, 2017


Walk the Heart of Centerville with family and friends and experience the beginning of the Holidays with a visit to see Santa, a live nativity and more!

Dayton Holiday Festival

November 24, 2017

Watch the holidays light up during Dayton’s traditional tree lighting on Courthouse Square, followed immediately by a nighttime parade for children, sparkling with more than 100,000 lights!

The holiday fun continues through December with Family Weekends and other activities, including The Tike’s Shoppe and Wintergarden Wonderland Windows at the Schuster Center, a family movie series, pizza with Santa, a holiday train display, noontime entertainment in downtown’s office buildings, and much more.

Ice Rink Opening Weekend at Riverscape Metropark

November 24, 2017


Spend the holiday weekend creating lasting memories with friends and family at MetroParks Ice Rink! Warm up with hot chocolate from our food concessions.

Cost: Admission $5; Skate Rental $2; Children 3 and under free.

Carl & Dorothy Young's Christmas Trees

November 24, 2017 - December 17, 2017

Monday – Friday 11a-7p; Saturday 9a-7p; Sunday 9a-6p

Choose and cut your tree from the 30 acre farm or select a freshly cut tree. The gift shop has tree stands, ornaments and gifts along with wreaths, handmade grave blankets and crosses. Located just south Young’s Jersey Dairy — look for the little red tree barn next to Route 68.

Woodland Lights

November 24. 2017 - December 30, 2017

Weekends until the 3rd, then 6p-9p, nightly

Woodland Lights offers a fantasyland of holiday lights and displays along a half-mile wooded path. The month-long festival enters its 24th season with more lights, more vignettes, and the same winter whimsy that enchants thousands of visitors every year.

Cost: $8; 2 and under is free

Legendary Lights of Clifton Mills

November 24. 2017 - December 31, 2017

5p-9p, nightly

Every hour, on the hour, all 3.5 million lights at Clifton Mill go out leaving guests in total darkness. As a hush falls over the spectators, orchestral music softly begins to play a medley of traditional songs and some of the lights on the covered bridge begin to twinkle on and off again. As the music builds, more and more lights on the bridge blink on and off in time to the music, lights on the pseudo trees swirl around and change color in a way that seems impossible. By the end of the song, the music is booming through Clifton Gorge, the lights on the covered bridge have become mesmerizing. Then the music ends and the bridge lights go out, once again leaving guests in total darkness. Then, all 3.5 million lights come on again all at once.

Cost: $10; Children 6 and under are free.

A Christmas Story at the Victoria Theatre

November 28, 2017 - November 29, 2017


Fans of the movie will thrill to see this beloved tale come to life, while newbies are in for one fun introduction at the intimate Victoria Theatre in Dayton.

Tickets start at $30

Mannheim Steamroller

November 29, 2017

See website for showtimes and tickets.

Get into the holiday spirit with an impressive performance with some of our favorite holiday music.

Cost: Tickets start at $38 (Prices fluctuate based on demand and availability.)

A Carillon Christmas

November 29, 2017 - December 29, 2017


Join Carillon for a month of seasonal programming as Carillon Historical Park is turned into a winter wonderland of lights, music, food, and family fun!

Cost: General Admission

Friends of SICSA Holiday Bazaar

December 1, 2017 - December 2, 2017

12p-7p on Friday and on 9a-4p Saturday

You won’t want to miss the crafts, homemade dog biscuits, baked goods, collectibles, and gifts for both people and pets. All proceeds benefit the animals at SICSA! Photos with Santa on Saturday only, so don’t miss out!

Christmas in the Village in Waynesville

December 1, 2017 - December 3, 2017

Friday 6p-9p; Saturday 12p-9p; Sunday 12p-5p

Step back in time and visit Waynesville this weekend for our holiday celebration.  We will have 1300 luminaries, horse drawn carriage rides, costume characters, strolling choirs and barbershop quartets, heated entertainment tent and more.  Don’t forget the delightful dining and shopping to complete your experience!  With over 70+ retail and dining establishments you will quickly cross off your shopping list with unique and wonderful gifts.

Wreath Making at Learning Tree Farm

December 2, 2017


Part of the Saturday Family Fun series. Get a jump on holiday decorating and use natural materials from around the farm to create a unique wreath or swag together for your family’s front door or as a holiday gift. If you have extra ribbon or accessories in your holiday box, feel free to bring it to add to your wreath. Please register online to assure enough supplies. One frame will be provided per registered family.

Cost: $10 per family

Lunch with Santa at Town and Country Shopping Center

December 2, 2017


A special afternoon with Santa! Ticket price includes a Chick-fil-A lunch, crafts, games and of course a visit from Santa. Bring your camera to take photos!

Cost: $10

A Rosewood Holiday Arts Festival

December 2, 2017


Featuring artists, demonstrations, art activities, theater and dance performances and art exhibitions, there is something for everyone. Shop for handmade gifts or create your own. All ages are welcome, and admission is free with refreshments and artwork for purchase. A Rosewood Holiday takes place every December throughout the entire Rosewood facility.

Lebanon Christmas Parade

December 2, 2017


Join Lebanon and the surrounding communities for two horse-drawn carriage parades: a daylight parade at 1:00pm and the traditional evening parade at 7:00pm.  Every year this parade gets bigger and more exciting! Festivities include gift and food vendors stationed along E. Mulberry Street; shopping in downtown Historic Lebanon with extended business hours for our 80-plus antique and specialty stores; Christmas carolers, carriage rides; visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus; musical entertainment, and train rides to the North Pole on the North Pole Express with LM&M Railroad. This is a free family event! The festival begins at 10:00am and ends after the evening parade.

Breakfast with Santa at Polen Farm

December 2, 2017


Fun for the whole family! Santa will join us for this very special breakfast. After eating you will have some individual one on one time with Santa and enjoy a craft. Seating is very limited so register early. Ages: 12 months and older. Every person must register and pay to attend including adult and children.

Cost is $7/resident and $10/non-resident.

Breakfast with Santa at Austin Landing

December 2, 2017


Santa is back at Austin Landing and excited to share a morning full of magic with every good little girl and boy! Join Santa at the Hilton Garden Inn for a yummy breakfast and a day your family won’t forget!

Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt at Polen Farm

December 2, 2017 - December 3, 2017

6p-7p and 7:30p-8:30p

Someone has left candy canes all over the fields at Polen Farm! Join us as we decorate a bag for hunting and collecting candy canes. After we collect them all, we will enjoy cookies and hot cocoa. Santa may even join in on the fun! Parents must go with children. The event is rain, snow or shine. NOTE: EVERYONE must register and pay in advance to attend. Space is limited.

Fee per person, per session: $3/resident; $5/ non-resident.

A Night to Remember at SICSA

December 3, 2017


This holiday celebration is for the entire family, including family pets! Enjoy a tree-lighting ceremony and blessing of the pets that will take place outdoors under a cozy a tent with heaters. Volunteers will be toasting scrumptious s’mores over a fire for everyone to enjoy. Inside the SICSA building, there will be stations to keep everyone celebrating: photos with Santa, children’s crafts, a custom paw print ornament keepsake, delicious goodies, refreshments and personal tours of the adoption center

Oregon Historic District Annual Candlelight Holiday Tour

December 4, 2017 - December 6, 2017

6:30p, 7p, 7:30p, 8p 

This year’s tour showcases five beautifully decorated homes for three nights guided by historically dressed guides. Guides walk tour guests through the neighborhood to visit each home, see the historic interiors and meet the homeowners. The last home on the tour will offer you delicious pastries, champagne, punch, and coffee.

Cost is $25

Sounds of the Season

December 5, 2017


Make this evening part of your Christmas season festivities. This is a great opportunity to visit with friends and share a nice holiday meal with all of the trimmings, followed by the inspirational sounds of the Kettering Civic Band’s holiday concert. Please register by November 27th. 

Cost is $18/residents; $20/non-residents.

Breakfast with Santa in Washington Township

December 8, 2017


Share a light breakfast of Donuts from Bill’s donut shop, muffins and fruit along with a visit from Santa during this morning of holiday fun. The gym will be a playland of toys.

Cost is $10 for 1 child and adult; $3 additional person. Babies under one are free.

A Swingin' Holiday Celebration

December 8. 2017 - December 9, 2017

See website for show times and ticket information.

The Christmas season has many moods . . . from sacred and traditional to young-at-heart and popular. For these performances, however, the focus is on Swing: those catchy rhythms that the hippest of the hip use to make everything, including the holidays, just a little more cool.

Cost: Tickets start at $29


December 9. 2017 - December 10, 2017

Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm and Sunday, 12p to 4 pm

Visit the Dayton Liederkranz Turner for the annual celebration of the centuries old Christmas market tradition that originated in Nuernburg, Germany. Quality vendors will offer hand crafted ornaments, hand made bath soaps and accessories, beer steins, amber jewelry from the Baltic, German collectible items, antiques, stained glass items, handcrafted pottery, unique jewelry, note cards & gifts, paper cut outs, etc. The annual Liederkranz Christmas Raffle will also feature many wonderful items.

Playdate with Santa

December 15. 2017


Santa is coming to the Rec Center! All of our preschool physical equipment will be set up for play. Santa will be happy to visit and take pictures with your child. Christmas cookies will be offered.

Free for adults; $6 for the first child, additional children $4 each

The Nutcracker

December 15. 2017 - December 23, 2017

See website for show times and ticket information.

Sugarplum fairies and dancing mice… this is one Christmas classic your family is sure to enjoy building into your annual traditions!

Cost: Tickets start at $37

Swim with Santa at Aqua-Tots

December 16. 2017


Have your photo taken with Santa in a winter wonderland and then enjoy a family open swim in the 90-degree pool. Families must pre-register for this event. Registration will begin December 1st and is a first come, first serve event. Anyone who is planning to swim will need to register in person or over the phone. Payment is due at the time of registration. As always non-swimmers must be accompanied by an adult.

Holiday Skate & Swim

December 16. 2017


A festive holiday event filled with skating and swimming! Kids will have a great time doing many fun activities, including; ice skating, decorating crafts, visiting with Santa, then heading off to swim! Non-swimmers must be accompanied by an adult in the water. Fee includes admission for one child/one adult, skate rental and a craft. Ages 3 – 15. Preregistration required.

$10 Kettering residents; $15 nonresidents; Adult $2 skate rental will apply. 

Chanukah on Ice at Riverscape MetroPark

December 17. 2017


Featuring a huge ice menorah being carved right in front of your eyes and a grand lighting of the ice menorah! You will also be able to skate at the ice rink at RiverScape in downtown Dayton. Donuts, latkes and hot cocoa for all!! 

Cost:$7 per skater

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2 Responses to The Dayton Mom’s Guide to Holiday Events {2017}

  1. Janie November 6, 2017 at 9:11 pm #

    Spark Art Studio in Kettering has lots of wonderful Holiday options for you and your little ones as well!

  2. Dayton Contemporary Dance Company November 7, 2017 at 9:52 am #

    Dayton Contemporary Dance Company is bringing the beloved children’s book alive in our classic holiday performance! December 1-2, 2017 at University of Dayton’s Boll Theatre. Students and group tickets start at $12.50 each!

    DCDC Associate Artistic Director Crystal Michelle’s beautiful choreography carries the viewer through the timeless Christmas story about the joyful, giving spirit of the season.

    More information available at