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Your Guide to Holiday Events in Troy & Metro Detroit

Looking for some holiday cheer within an hour's drive? We've got lights, Santas, parades and more happening in the greater Detroit area.

We combed our Patches for some great holiday events to put together this list of holiday happenings all over Southeast Michigan. Get out and have some festive fun!

Oakland County

Troy

Santa at The Somerset Collection: He arrived Friday, Nov. 16 and will be there daily through Christmas Eve (closed on Thanksgiving). Click here for the full schedule.

Santa at Oakland Mall: He arrived Nov. 2 and will be there daily through Christmas Eve (closed on Thanksgiving). Click here for the full schedule.

Old Fashioned Christmas at Troy Historic Village: 1-3 p.m. Dec. 1 at the Troy Historic Village; $5 for adults; $3 for seniors and children 12+; free for children under 12. Experience the tastes, sights, and sounds of holidays past at this year’s Old-Fashioned Christmas event. Tour the decorated Village Green and visit our historic buildings to hear traditional carols, try Christmas foods from long ago and around the world, see the many ways this holiday is celebrated and visit with Santa Claus. Special activities for children and delicious holiday treats! Park at Zion Church and ride the free shuttle bus to the Village.

Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony: 7 p.m. on Dec. 5. at Troy City Hall. Free for all ages. Children are invited to visit with Santa Claus after he lights the Christmas tree. The Athens High School Choirs (Magic! & Concert Choir), directed by Michelle Marszalkowski, will lead the caroling. Please sing along! The Troy Colts Drumline will perform and everyone will enjoy hot cocoa & holiday sweets. Special costumed characters will meet with children courtesy of Great Clips, Troy. Event held in front of City Hall at the Veteran’s Plaza and cablecast on WTRY (WOW 10/Comcast 17).  

Decorate for Wildlife with Santa: 9-11 a.m. on Dec. 8 at the Troy Nature Center. $15 to register ($13 for TNS members); At-the-door fee is $17. Here’s a great way to attract animals – put out edible decorations for them! Each child will make some ornaments to hang up outside. Join Santa Claus as he tells a few tales about animals he has observed. Everyone will talk with Santa personally and receive a small gift from him. Bring your cameras and take pictures of your little ones with Santa. Please dress for the weather, as a short hike is included. Each child participating in the program must be registered. Parents and/or grandparents are free and need to remain with the child. Call 248-524-3567 to register.

Third annual Indoor Walk-through Display of over 300 Nativity Sets from Around the World: Held at Bridge Community Church from 1-9 p.m. on Dec. 6 and 7, and from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Dec. 8. For all ages; light refreshments provided.

Berkley

Holiday Lights Parade and tree-lighting ceremony: Dec. 1 in Berkley. The festivities begin early in the day with a petting zoo, carriage rides, etc. and go into the night with the tree-lighting after the parade. Here’s a link to last year’s coverage: http://patch.com/A-pkHk

Birmingham

Holiday Tree Lighting: 6 p.m. Nov. 21 at Shain Park. That is also the first day for the Santa House in Shain Park (lasts through Dec. 24), and the first day for carriage rides around the city (through Dec. 22).

Magic of Birmingham: Shopping events takes place Dec. 8 and Dec. 15 at most downtown shops.

Winter Markt: (Yes, that’s how you spell it) takes place Nov. 30-Dec. 2 in Shain Park.

Bloomfield

2012 "Gingerbread House Brunch": the Friends of Preservation Bloomfield will present their fifth annual Gingerbread House Brunch on Friday, Dec. 7, from 9 a.m.- 12:30 p.m. at Oakland Hills Country Club. This event will be preceded by the third annual “Family Hour” preview evening on Thursday, Dec. 6, from 5-8 p.m. Both events will showcase whimsical gingerbread houses created by local professional and non-professional pastry chefs, which will be reviewed by judges and awarded ribbons for the ‘best of the best.’ Both events are open to the public. See coverage of last year's event.

Farmington-Farmington Hills

Holly Days: Dec. 1, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. (Greens & Gifts Farmers Market, Santa Visit, ice carving and more at the Walter E. Sundquist Pavilion; story time with Mrs. Santa and crafts at Mike Greer Photography, 33316 Grand River Ave.; free movies at the Farmington Civic Theater; holiday open house and tree lighting at the Governor Warner Mansion); Farmington Hills tree lighting Nov. 27, 6:30 p.m., at the municipal campus, 11 Mile and Orchard Lake Roads (visit from Santa and refreshments)

Highland Township

Highland Tree Lighting: 7 p.m., Dec. 3, at Veterans Park and Highland Station House in Highland. There will be caroling, cookies and cider. Come watch Santa light the Highland Christmas Tree using Christmas magic. Santa will then move to the Highland Station House where kids can visit with him and share what they want for Christmas.

Lake Orion

Tree Lighting: 6 p.m. Nov. 28, Downtown Lake Orion, across from CJ's Lakeside restaurant. Features the tree lighting ceremony, carolers, Mrs. Claus, and free hot cocoa.

Holiday Lighted Parade: 6 p.m. Dec. 1. A nighttime light parade. This year's theme is "Magic on Broadway!" Christmas lights illuminate floats and vehicles. Community groups, marching bands and Santa join in the procession.

Holly Jolly Folly: Nov. 30 at Golling Buick GMC. Community fundraiser for the light parade, includes dinner, a silent auction, entertainment and the Lake Orion High School Choir. $33 admission; table of 10 for $300. Cash bar. Tickets are at Golling Buick GMC, 1491 S. Lapeer Road, Lake Orion.

Lake Orion Lighted Holiday Village Shopping Event: All day Dec. 8. Look for
horse-drawn carriage rides, reindeer petting stations, ice carvings, carolers and more during this all-day festive shopping extravaganza.

Milford

Milford Christmas Parade: 10 a.m. Nov. 24 on Main Street in downtown Milford. This is one of the longest-standing Main Street traditions around. It's a wonderful holiday event for the entire region. Come early! Main Street fills up fast.

Novi

Light Up the Night: Friday, Nov. 30 from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Novi Civic Center. The event includes a tree lighting at 6:45 p.m., craft show, Santa visits (professional photos are $5 each), children’s activities, face painting, marshmallow roasting, hockey skills competition, live reindeer, miniature train rides and free food samples from several local restaurants. Live performances include a magician, festive choir, and an interactive Nutcracker performance. The event is free. 

Holiday Family Road Rally: Friday, Dec. 14 from 6-10 p.m. Teams of 4-6 people go on a scavenger hunt to find predetermined items to photograph. Teams can consist of adults and children, but need at least one adult 21 or older. Each picture taken with the team earns points, which can win you prizes. Teams must have their own vehicle and digital camera. The night ends at a local restaurant for appetizers and awards. Cost is $100 per team and you must register by Dec. 7. The event begins in Fuerst Park in Novi.

Northville

Holiday Lighted Parade: Friday, Nov. 16 at 6:30 p.m. in downtown Northville. After the parade, the public is invited to gather in Town Square for a tree lighting ceremony, carol singing and appearance by Santa.

Jingle Bell Run: Saturday,  Dec. 1 beginning at 6 a.m. at Northville Downs. The 5K and 1 mile fun run benefit The Arthritis Foundation.

Winter Market: Saturday, Dec. 1 and Sunday, Dec. 2 in Downtown Northville. The event includes horse and carriage rides, a live reindeer exhibit, carousel, ice carving demonstrations, treats, artisan and greens sale, and the Santa House.

Rochester/Rochester Hills

Santa’s arrival at The Village of Rochester Hills: Music, special guests and more from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Nov. 16 at the outdoor shopping center at the corner of Adams and Walton in Rochester Hills.

Lagniappe and the lighting of downtown Rochester: Businesses will give small gifts to customers from 5-9 p.m. Nov. 26; the lighting - and Santa’s arrival - happens at 7 p.m.

Hometown Christmas Parade: 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2. The parade starts north of town at the corner of Tienken and Rochester roads in dowtown Rochester and continues south on Main Street to downtown Rochester.

Royal Oak

Santa Scamper in downtown Royal Oak: The half-mile run along Washington Avenue on Nov. 18 is open to all walkers, joggers, and runners. The noncompetitive event takes place at 1:30 p.m.,  just ahead of Royal Oak's Holiday Magic Parade. Registration includes a race number, Santa hat, McDonald’s coupon and hot chocolate after the run to enjoy while watching the parade.

Holiday Magic Parade in downtown Royal Oak: Get into the holiday spirit along Washington Avenue with over 80 parade units, including marching bands, floats, musical performances, circus acts and Santa. After the parade, visit Santa at the Emagine Theatre from 3-5 p.m. or enjoy a stroll through downtown. The parade starts at 2 p.m. on Nov. 18.

Parade-A-Palooza in Downtown Royal Oak: Pick up your Prize Passport and map to huge savings and family-friendly activities at over 40 participating restaurants and retailers in downtown Royal Oak. This event is from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m on Nov. 18. (The Royal Oak Holiday Magic Parade is at 2 p.m.) Parking is free.

Holiday Marketplace at the Royal Oak Farmers Market: Get an early start on holiday shopping. Over 60 local crafters, artisans and Royal Oak merchants will be at the Royal Oak Farmers Market from 4-8 p.m. on Nov. 29 at 316 E 11 Mile Rd.

Tree Lighting CeremonyJoin carolers, the Salvation Army Band and the Royal Oak Children’s Choir while waiting for a visit from Santa. The jolly elf will flick the switch to light the holiday tree. This event takes place from 6:15-7 p.m.  Nov. 29 at the Royal Oak Farmers Market at 316 E 11 Mile Rd.

West Bloomfield/Keego Harbor

Chanukah Wonderland at Orchard Mall Shopping Center, Dec. 9-12, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Includes live historical exhibit on how olive oil was pressed from raw olives during Temple period. Giant menorah lighting takes place Dec. 11, 5:30 p.m.

Holiday tree lighting at DPW building in Keego Harbor (Beechmont at Schroeder), Nov. 30, 7 p.m.

White Lake Township

White Lake Tree Lighting: 6 p.m.-8 p.m., Dec. 5 at the Village Lakes Shopping Center off M-59 in White Lake. Come for a night of activities including local choir groups, dance troupes, ice sculpture creations, children's crafts, gingerbread house displays, reindeer and of course Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Macomb County

Chesterfield Township

Chesterfield Township Tree Lighting at 7 p.m. Dec. 7 at Municipal Offices. Christmas caroling, Santa's arrival by fire truck, holiday crafts as well as cookies and hot cocoa at the Weller School. Vocal performances by local schools and scout groups. Dress warmly. 

Holiday House Decorating Contest in Chesterfield Township. Nominate any home within the township by calling 586-949-0400, extension 4 and leave an address. Awards will be presented Dec. 17 at the Board of Trustees meeting. Nominations are due by 3 p.m. Dec. 7. Contest hours are 6-10 p.m. Dec. 10.

Macomb Township

Holiday tree Lighting and Afterglow: Wednesday, Nov. 28 at 7 p.m. on the steps of Town Hall, 54111 Broughton Rd., off 25 Mile Road. After glow to follow in the neighboring Rec Center. 

New Baltimore

Pancake breakfast with Santa at New Baltimore Fire Department from 8 a.m. to noon Dec. 2. Proceeds to benefit the Anchor Bay Community Giving Tree Holiday Charity Program. Bring your camera for pictures with Santa.

New Baltimore Christmas Tree Lighting at 7 p.m. Dec. 3 on Washington Street in downtown New Baltimore. Join the sing-alongand bring a canned good or boxed food item to donate to the St. Mary's food pantry. See Santa in the recreation center, where there will be hot chocolate and donuts. Cameras are welcome. Dress warmly.

New Baltimore Parks and Recreation Commission Holiday Decorating Contest is from Dec. 1- 21. The Commissioners will be driving throughout the city picking their choices and will narrow down the three home winners and one business winner.  The winners will be announced at the first Parks and Recreation Commission meeting at 6 p.m.  Jan. 3.

Jingle Bell Run Dec. 9 at New Baltimore Recreation Center. Pre-registration pick-up and race day registration from 1-3:30 p.m. at the rec center. One-mile fun walk starts at 4 p.m. and 5K run starts at 4:15 p.m. Proceeds to benefit the Anchor Bay School DECA Chapter, A National Marketing Student Organization, Student Scholarships and M.D.A. Checks are to be made payable to Anchor Bay Roadrunners. Mail entries to: Jingle Bell Run, 6319 County Line, Fair Haven, 48023. For more information, call 586-725-0291.

Shelby Township

Tree Lighting Festival: Dec. 6 at the Shelby Township Municipal Hall, located at 52700 Van Dyke Ave. The Eisenhower High School choir and band will lead the community in Christmas carols.  Kids can also visit Santa's Snack Shop for hot cider and a cookie and then visit with Santa after the tree lighting.

Wayne County

Canton

Letters to Santa: Canton Leisure Services has made special arrangements with its friends at the North Pole and the U.S. Post Office to deliver children's wish lists to Santa. To mail your letter to Santa, please drop it in the North Pole express Mailbox in the Summit on the Park lobby Nov. 1 - Dec. 2. Santa asks that you print your name and address clearly so he can reply to your letter. Each household will receive a return letter and Santa will take care of the postage.

Turkey Trot for a Cause: Celebrate the tradition of family and exercise on Thanksgiving morning as Canton runs for the cause of epilepsy. This 5K chip-timed run/walk is a family event. Headquarters are at the Summit on the Park ballroom. Pre-registrants are eligible to receive a Turkey Trot T-shirt. The run will wind through Heritage Park and Pheasant Run Golf Course. Check out csc.canton-mi.org for the latest updates. Entry is $25 for adults and $10 for children ages 4-12. Details: 734-483-5600.

Holiday Home Decorating Contest: Post a photo of your home light display on theCanton Leisure Services Facebook page or contact Canton Leisure Services to arrange for staffers to stop by and take a photo. Judging will take place from Dec. 1-15 with winners announced Dec. 16.

34th Annual Tree Lighting Celebration: Canton Township will light its tree Dec. 5 at Summit on the Park with a festive celebration from 6-8:30 p.m. Festivities will take place both indoors and outdoors with the tree lighting at 6:30 p.m. Admission is $5 for indoor events. There will be visits with Santa Claus, holiday-themed entertainment, refreshments, crafts and activities.

Santa Brunch: Enjoy brunch with Santa Claus the morning of Dec. 9 at the Summit on the Park ballrooms. Doors open at 11 a.m., with Santa "landing" at 11:30 a.m. Registration is open now until Dec. 2. Children 3 and under are free; ages 4-12: $12 and ages 13 and up are $16. Photos and videos are encouraged.

Dearborn

Holiday Nights at Greenfield Village: The 2012 dates for Holiday Nights are Dec. 1, 7-8, 14-16, 18-23 and 26-27 from 6:30-10 p.m. each night. Includes Santa and live reindeer, candle-lit paths, ice skating, model T rides, live 19th Century entertainment, and fireworks every night of the event. Supper with Santa available for members. Tickets for Holiday Nights range from $12.75-$72, depending on membership status, age and inclusions. PHOTOS HERE: http://patch.com/A-wJlS

Tree Lighting and Festival of Trees: Festival runs Nov. 17-25 at the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center. Tree lighting and sing-a-long with Mayor Jack O’Reilly will be held on Nov. 20. Admission: Adults: $5, Children: $3, under 2 years - free Photos here: http://patch.com/A-nVCD

Grosse Pointe

37th annual Grosse Pointe Santa Claus Parade will take place Friday, Nov. 23, at 10 a.m. at the Village in Grosse Pointe.

Plymouth

Plymouth Walk of Trees: Nov. 16-Jan. 2. Over 70 Christmas trees will line Kellogg Park in Downtown Plymouth.  Trees are sponsored and decorated by various local businesses, families and organizations.

Tree Lighting and Santa Claus' Arrival: 6 p.m. Nov. 23 Kellogg Park at Ann Arbor Trail and S. Main St. 6 p.m. Free. Plus gingerbread houses on display at local/downtown businesses beginning Nov. 23.

"A Dickens of a Christmas" Exhibit: Plymouth Historical Museum. Launches Dec. 1 1-4 p.m. 155 S. Main St.

Teddy Bear Toss for Veterans:  Plymouth Whalers game vs. Kitchener Rangers. Dec. 1 at Compuware Arena, 14900 Beck Road in Plymouth Township. 7:05 p.m. Teddy bears tossed onto the ice after first goal. Helps provide toys for families in need.

Wyandotte

Tree Lighting: 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16, in downtown Wyandotte, featuring a holiday sing-a-long with the Roosevelt High School choir and the First United Methodist Church Bell Choir. The tree lighting is in conjunction with the city's Third Friday celebration, where downtown merchants stay open later and offer discounts and specials.

Holiday Parade: 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, along Biddle in downtown Wyandotte.

Livingston County

Brighton

Holiday Glow: Sat. Nov. 17 at 4 p.m. on Main Street in downtown Brighton. Brighton’s Holiday Glow launches the holiday season with live entertainment and dance performances from local companies, free hay rides, choo-choo train rides, a nativity petting farm, a station to write letters to Santa, pictures with reindeer, tasty holiday treats and special seasonal sales by local merchants. Santa and Mrs. Claus will join the Mayor of the City of Brighton at approximately 5:45 p.m. at the Mill Pond in downtown Brighton where Santa will be presented a key to the city and magically light the trees to orchestrated synchronized music. 

Howell

Fantasy of Lights parade with the Cyldesdale horses: Friday, Nov. 23, in downtown Howell. Kick off the holiday season with the Fantasy of Lights Parade as it marches down Grand River Avenue in historic downtown Howell before a crowd of thousands. This traditional event features a spectacular nighttime parade, marching bands and musical entertainment, a 5K run, children's activities, and of course, Santa Claus.

Hartland

Warm N Cozy Bazaar: Saturday, Dec. 1. 32nd Annual Holiday craft bazaar.

Black Sheep Weavers Guild Holiday Sale: Nov. 30 and Dec. 1. 30th annual holiday sale. All handmade/woven items.

Washtenaw County

Chelsea

Hometown Holiday: Nov. 30-Dec. 1. Hometown Holiday takes place the first weekend of December each year. It is a fun filled weekend celebration which marks the beginning of the holiday season. Ushering in the festivities will be a tree lighting ceremony and visits with Santa, plus lots of other holiday activities and entertainment at our many great merchants and historic locations in Chelsea, Michigan. To view a complete schedule of events, visit http://chelseafestivals.com/

Dexter

Winter Festival: The Dexter Winter Festival takes place downtown on Nov. 24. Events include a holiday wreath auction, caroling at Monument Park, and the annual lighting of the village Christmas tree. Time: TBA

Home for the Holidays Dec. 1 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in downtown Dexter. The event includes Breakfast with Santa, craft bazaars, Christmas at Gordon Hall, and the annual Holiday Hustle 5K. Participants in the 5K can register online at www.runholiday5k.com.

Hudson Mills Metropark Santa Central: Children can vist Santa Central and play reindeer games, enjoy a hayride and snack and share their wish list with Santa. You may bring your own camera, purchase a photo for $2 or bring a new toy for Toys for Tots and receive a photo free. Admission is by advance ticket purchase only. Tickets are available for purchase at the park office. Sunday, December 11 at 10 am, 12:30 pm & 2:30 pm
Hudson Mills Activity Center. Event fee $6 per child.

Saline

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever Nov. 29-30 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 1-2 at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., Stone Arch Arts & Events, 117 S. Ann Arbor St. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, directed by Kara Williams and Elizabeth Champion, is based on the book of the same name.  

Saline Tree Lighting Ceremony: Nov. 30 at 7 p.m., KeyBank, 100 W. Michigan Ave., Saline

Saline Holiday Parade: Dec. 1 at 5:30 p.m., 141 E. Michigan Ave., Saline

Santa’s Village in Saline Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 3-4 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Stone Arch Arts & Events, 117 S. Ann Arbor St., Saline

Fiddlers ReStrung Toys for Tots Hometown Concert: Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. at Saline High School, 1300 Campus Parkway, Saline. Special Guests include 6th Grade & 7th/8th grade Fiddle Clubs, Varsity Blues, and SHS Drumline.  Tickets are $10 for Adults, $5 for Seniors & Students and are available at www.fiddlersReStrung.com Call 734-663-8923 (8am to 8pm) or at the door.  Please bring a new, unwrapped toy to donate!

1930s Christmas on the Farm: Dec. 8 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and Dec. 9 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Rentschler Farm Museum, 1265 E. Michigan Ave., Saline.  See how farm families coped at Christmastime, when faced with a tight money situation during the Great Depression years. Our 12-room farmhouse will be decorated with natural things that might have been found on the farm. A live tree will grace the parlor with genuine 1930s ornaments and lights. Simple decorations, good aromas throughout the house, and pleasing sights and sounds will greet visitors as they enter the front door.

Did we miss your favorite holiday event? Tell us in the comments!

Kim Headbloom November 19, 2012 at 02:03 PM
Don't forget....the 2012 Troy Elf Shelf Craft Show is this Saturday, November 24th from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Troy High School, 4777 Northfield Parkway (Long Lake between Crooks and Coolidge). Lots of great gift for the hostess, teacher, co-worker, secret santa and stocking stuffers ideas for everyone on your list.

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