The Thanksgiving season will be a festive time in Austin, Texas, with homecomings and gatherings with family and friends. There will be several free family-friendly holiday events offering fun for children and adults. Check out all the splendid holiday events during Thanksgiving Week in Austin in 2017.
Children Giving to Children Parade
Nov. 18 @ 11 a.m.
1100 Congress Ave., Austin, Texas 78701
The parade will benefit Operation Blue Santa, so spectators bring new, unwrapped toys to donate. Santa’s helpers will be on the parade route to help spectators donate the toys, which will be given to children for the holidays.
Gingerbread Village at Four Seasons
Nov. 21-Dec. 25 @ 24 hours a day
Dec. 4-5 @ 5 p.m. Open Houses
Four Seasons Hotel Austin, Jacinto Blvd., Austin, TX 78701
The Four Seasons Hotel will debut its annual Gingerbread Village on Nov. 21. This year’s Gingerbread Village will have a nostalgic Monopoly-inspired theme with 10 edible gingerbread houses styled after well-known Austin businesses and landmarks, such as Zilker Park and Esther’s Follies. The charming Gingerbread Village will be on display in the hotel lobby 24 hours a day, so this will be a great destination to enjoy with the family. On Dec. 4 and 5 the Four Seasons Hotel will hold Gingerbread Village Open Houses from 5-6 p.m. so you can get a closer look at the village, ask questions, meet Santa Claus, and enjoy complimentary refreshments.
Santa on the Terrace
Nov. 24 @ 10 a.m.
City Terrace, The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Dr., Austin, Texas 78704
Santa will be at the City Terrace in Austin on Black Friday to spread some holiday cheer. Bring the kids to have a free photo with Santa and enjoy holiday treats. There will be activities that will be fun for the family.
Lights Spectacular in Johnson
Nov. 24-25 @ 5 p.m.
Blanco County Courthouse, Johnson, Texas 78636
The Lights Spectacular will open on Now.24 with the courthouse lighting ceremony and fireworks. More than a million lights will illuminate three city blocks, including the City Park, Courthouse, and Pedernales Electric Co-op. The Lighted Hooves & Wheels parade will be on Nov. 25 and will step off at about 6:30 p.m. The Chuckwagon Food Court will be open on opening weekend to offer a variety of foods and refreshments. This will be a festive weekend that the entire family will enjoy. The Lights Spectacular will light up the area for the holiday season.
Annual Santa’s Arrival & Tree Lighting
Nov. 24 @ 6 p.m.
Hill Country Galleria, 12700 Hill Country Blvd., Bee Cave, Texas 78738
The holiday season will be kicked off with a tree lights and the arrival of Santa Claus on Black Friday. Take the kids to enjoy the fun, to see Santa, and countdown to the lighting of the Christmas tree, followed by a spectacular show of fireworks.
Boerne Dickens on Main
Nov. 24-25 @ 10 a.m.
Downtown Boerne, 100 N. Main, Boerne, Texas 78006
Kids and adults will have fun at this charming Dickens-style Christmas event in Boerne. There will be two days of fun activities for the family, holiday entertainment, music, food vendors, and more. The kid-friendly activities will include a petting zoo, crafts, games, trackless train, carriage rides, pony rides, and the chance to have photos taken with live reindeer and Santa Claus. Admission will be free but there will be fees for some activities.
Annual Lighting of the Square in Georgetown
Nov. 24 @ 5:30 p.m.
Georgetown Square, 103 W 7th St., Georgetown, TX
Join in the fun at this magical holiday season kick-off with the Lighting of the Square. The entire family can join in and sing carols along with the Austin Carolers. The Downtown square and Courthouse will be illuminated and become a holiday wonderland. Santa will be available for photos from 6:30-8 p.m. There will be a fee for photos with Santa, which will benefit the Brown Santa Program. The Annual Lighting of the Square will be free to attend.
Trail of Lights in Wimberly
Nov. 25 @ 5 p.m. for Opening Night
Nov. 26-Dec. 28 @ 6 p.m.
The EmilyAnn Theatre & Gardens, Wimberly, TX 78676
Stroll along a walking path decorated with more than 100 lighted exhibits. Santa will arrive on the Wimberly Fire Truck at 5 p.m. on opening night and the opening ceremonies will be from 5-6 p.m. Concessions will be available, so you can purchase refreshments, marshmallows, hot cocoa, and more. Admission will be free but donations are greatly appreciated.
Zilker Holiday Tree Lighting
Zilker Park, Austin, TX 78704
The 52nd Holiday Tree Lighting in Zilker Park will celebrate the illumination of the large man-made Christmas Tree. There will be food merchants and other vendors at the tree throughout December.
Holiday Sing-A-Long and Downtown Stroll
Dec. 2 @ 6 p.m.
State Capitol, 1100 Congress Ave., Austin, TX 78701
The entire family will enjoy the holiday fun as they sing Christmas carols and countdown to the lighting of the Christmas Tree at the State Capital. The area will be buzzing because shops and restaurants will be open late and there will be special holiday activities for the family.
Buda, TX 78610
The City of Buda will host the 38th Annual Budafest during the first weekend of December. Festivities will include a lighted holiday parade, a downtown lighting ceremony, a “reindog” parade, carnival, snow slide, craft vendors, kids activities, and more. The Budafest festival will be free to attend.