2019 Family Holiday Guide for the Great Lakes Bay Region


2019 Family Holiday Guide

There is no place like HOME during the holiday season! The festivities in the Great Lakes Bay Region start in November and go right through to New Years.  This is your guide to holiday events, planning visits with Santa and a Christmas Tree Farm, Light Shows, and saving with the STEM Passport

HOLIDAY EVENTS

Family-friendly events occurring in Bay, Isabella, Midland, and Saginaw County during the months of November & December

SANTA HOUSES

Visit Santa at one of these unique locations in Bay City, Midland, Frankenmuth, and Chesaning

CHRISTMAS TREE FARMS

Start a family tradition by visiting one of Great Lakes Bay Region’s Christmas Tree Farms.

LIGHT SHOWS

Be awed by a light show in Saginaw County.

STEM Passport

Holiday Savings at participating FUN PLACES with the STEM PASSPORT

 

HOLIDAY EVENTS

Click on the date that your interested in:

Friday NOVEMBER 22

10 AM – 5 PM – 2019 Festival of Trees @ Valley Plaza Resort (Midland)

Over 100 designers will be contributing fabulously decorated trees and wreaths to be raffled off to lucky winners. We have local vendors who will be selling their specialties. General Admission is $5 per person, Raffle Tickets are $1 each or 6 tickets for $5, Children 6 and under are free.

5:30 PM – 8:30 PM *FREEHolidays in the Heart of the City (Saginaw)

City Lighting Ceremony, Horse Drawn Wagon Rides, Pony Rides, Cookie House Competition, Holiday Market, Holiday Concerts, Santa & Mrs. Clause at the Gazebo, and Fireworks

7:30 PM – Theater – CIRQUE DREAMS: HOLIDAZE @ Midland Center for the Arts (Midland)

Cirque Dreams Holidaze lights up the holiday season with its popular and electrifying stage spectacular The New York Daily News proclaims a “delicious confection of charm, sparkle and talent by the sleigh load and so full of energy it could end our dependence on oil.” Broadway Director Neil Goldberg has searched the world to assemble the most unique cast of incomparable cirque artists and theatrical talent to wow audiences nationwide.  Tickets starting at $26.

8:30 PM *FREE – Fireworks @ Ojibway Island (Saginaw)

End the evening out with the Holidays in the Heart of the City’s fireworks.

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Saturday NOVEMBER 23

10 AM *FREESanta Holiday Parade @ Downtown Midland (Midland)

The Midland Santa Holiday Parade is gearing up the the 2019 parade! This year’s parade will be Saturday, November 23, 2019 with Midland’s own WMPX/WMRX announcing. This year’s theme being “Merry and Bright”.  Parade begins from Midland High School.

10 AM – 5 PM –  Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

10 AM – 7 PM – 2019 Festival of Trees @ Valley Plaza Resort (Midland)

Over 100 designers will be contributing fabulously decorated trees and wreaths to be raffled off to lucky winners. We have local vendors who will be selling their specialties. General Admission is $5 per person, Raffle Tickets are $1 each or 6 tickets for $5, Children 6 and under are free.

11 AM  *FREE – 42nd Annual Christmas Parade (Saginaw)

The 2018 parade will begin at the corner of Washington and Johnson. We will then go south on S. Washington to Ezra Rust Avenue and disband on Ojibway Island

12 – 4 PM *FREE – Holiday Party @ Castle Museum (Saginaw)

If you love games, crafts, face painting and Santa – join us at our Annual Holiday Party! This free event is fun for the entire family.

2 – 2:30 PM *FREESt. Nicholas to Santa Claus @ Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland (Frankenmuth)

Join us as St. Nicholas tells the story of how he became Santa Claus. This half-hour performance, a tradition here at Bronner’s, involves audience participation. Don’t miss out on this memorable experience for children of all ages.

2 – 3 PM *FREEChristmas Puppet Show- Holidays in the Heart of the City @ Hoyt Library (Saginaw)

In conjunction with downtown Saginaw’s Holiday’s in the Heart of the City, Hoyt Library offers a Christmas puppet show and stories for families with children ages 3-6.

2 PM – Theater – CIRQUE DREAMS: HOLIDAZE @ Midland Center for the Arts (Midland)

Cirque Dreams Holidaze lights up the holiday season with its popular and electrifying stage spectacular The New York Daily News proclaims a “delicious confection of charm, sparkle and talent by the sleigh load and so full of energy it could end our dependence on oil.” Broadway Director Neil Goldberg has searched the world to assemble the most unique cast of incomparable cirque artists and theatrical talent to wow audiences nationwide.  Tickets starting at $26.

3 – 3:30 PM *FREESt. Nicholas to Santa Claus @ Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland (Frankenmuth)

Join us as St. Nicholas tells the story of how he became Santa Claus. This half-hour performance, a tradition here at Bronner’s, involves audience participation. Don’t miss out on this memorable experience for children of all ages.

7:30 PM – Theater – CIRQUE DREAMS: HOLIDAZE @ Midland Center for the Arts (Midland)

Cirque Dreams Holidaze lights up the holiday season with its popular and electrifying stage spectacular The New York Daily News proclaims a “delicious confection of charm, sparkle and talent by the sleigh load and so full of energy it could end our dependence on oil.” Broadway Director Neil Goldberg has searched the world to assemble the most unique cast of incomparable cirque artists and theatrical talent to wow audiences nationwide.  Tickets starting at $26.

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Sunday NOVEMBER 24

10 AM – 4 PM – 2019 Festival of Trees @ Valley Plaza Resort (Midland)

Over 100 designers will be contributing fabulously decorated trees and wreaths to be raffled off to lucky winners. We have local vendors who will be selling their specialties. General Admission is $5 per person, Raffle Tickets are $1 each or 6 tickets for $5, Children 6 and under are free.

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

2 PM *FREEMOVIE SUNDAY “THE STAR” (2017) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

THE STAR, a small but brave donkey named Bo yearns for a life beyond his daily grind at the village mill. One day he finds the courage to break free, and finally goes on the adventure of his dreams. On his journey, he teams up with Ruth, a lovable sheep who has lost her flock and Dave, a dove with lofty aspirations. Along with three wisecracking camels and some eccentric stable animals, Bo and his new friends follow the Star and become accidental heroes in the greatest story ever told – the first Christmas. FREE WITH FOOD DONATION

2 – 2:30 PM *FREESt. Nicholas to Santa Claus @ Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland (Frankenmuth)

Join us as St. Nicholas tells the story of how he became Santa Claus. This half-hour performance, a tradition here at Bronner’s, involves audience participation. Don’t miss out on this memorable experience for children of all ages.

 3 – 3:30 PM *FREESt. Nicholas to Santa Claus @ Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland (Frankenmuth)

Join us as St. Nicholas tells the story of how he became Santa Claus. This half-hour performance, a tradition here at Bronner’s, involves audience participation. Don’t miss out on this memorable experience for children of all ages.

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Friday NOVEMBER 29

6 – 8 PM *FREEHOLIDAY CELEBRATION AND CANDLEWALK @ Frankenmuth River Place (Frankemuth)

Beginning at 6 PM at the River Place Shops, listen to carols sung by the Gemütlichkeit Club, enjoy free hot cocoa, cookies, and candles for the candle walk, listen to the Christmas story told by local clergy accompanied by music from the St. Lorenz Choir, then start the walk to the Chamber Platz for the lighting of the community tannenbaum (Christmas Tree). Santa will be visiting with children at the Visitor Center beginning at 6:30 PM. The Curbside Singers will be singing some holiday favorites before we light up the Christmas tree for the holidays!

7 PM *FREESanta Arrives @ Wenonah Park (Bay City)

Santa arrives in Wenonah Park at 7 pm for a special performance before going to the Nickless Family Community Pavilion Concession Stand to talk with all the good little boys and girls.

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Saturday NOVEMBER 30

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

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Sunday DECEMBER 1

10 AM – 1:45 PM *RSVPHoliday Brunch with Santa Claus @ Apple Mountain (Freeland)

Join us for brunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus! This year’s brunches will feature a made to order omelet station, breakfast favorites, fresh salads, entrées, desserts and more! We will be offering seating times at 10am, 10:30am, 12pm and 12:30pm. Santa will be visiting from 10:30am to 1:30pm. Cost – Adults: $36 | Children (9-12): $19 | Children (4-8): $14. RSVP by calling 989-921-9527.

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

10 AM – 5 PM *FREESundays in the City 2019 @ Downtown Bay City (Bay City)

The four Sundays leading up to Christmas showcase all of the “one-of-a-kind” shops and eateries that Downtown has to offer. Enjoy Holiday decorations, free horse-drawn carriage rides, strolling carolers, and holiday movies at the historic State Theatre.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

1 PM *FREEMovie: Miracle of 34th Street (1994) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

4 PM *FREEMovie: Christmas Vacation (1989) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

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Tuesday DECEMBER 3

5 – 7 PM *FREEReindeer at Your Library @ Auburn Area Branch Library (Auburn)

See live reindeer outside and make reindeer crafts inside the library! Family fun for all ages. No registration. Camera use is encouraged!

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7 PM *FREECOURTHOUSE LIGHTING & SANTA’S ARRIVAL @ Downtown Midland (Midland)

It’s a magical evening each year when the lights go on in front of Midland’s courthouse and, for many children and adults, the holidays begin! Every year the courthouse lighting heralds Santa’s arrival and the opening of his house for visitors young and old alike.

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Wednesday DECEMBER 4

5 – 7 PM *FREEReindeer at Your Library @ Pinconning Branch Library (Pinconning)

See live reindeer outside and make reindeer crafts inside the library! Family fun for all ages. No registration. Camera use is encouraged!

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Thursday DECEMBER 5

6:30 – 8 PM *FREEJingle Bell Fun Run/Walk @ Downtown Midland (Midland)

This fun, free 1-mile run or walk begins at 6:30 p.m. at the corner of Ashman and Main Streets in Downtown Midland. It’s not a timed race, so people of all ages are welcome to take their time and come dressed in their best festive gear. All registered participants will receive a jingle bell necklace to wear during the event. Furry friends and strollers are welcome! Participants are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items to be donated to a local food pantry for the holidays.

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Friday DECEMBER 6

5 – 7 PM *FREE Old Fashioned Christmas – Tree Lighting in St. Charles

5:30 – 7 PM *FREE Santa’s Holiday Hike @ Imerman Memorial Park (Saginaw)

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the season and come out and take a hike on our illuminated trail. Meet us at pavilion 4 for a campfire, Christmas music, hot cocoa, cookies and SANTA! Bring Coat for Kids donations to drop off at the start of the hike.

5:30 – 8:30 PM *FREEA Night with Santa & Lighted Orchard @ Leaman’s Green Applebarn (Freeland)

Lighted orchard, lighted hayride, visit with Santa, free craft and free s’mores (while supplies last), and visits with Bob the Christmas Donkey. Admission: Canned food good or non perishable item per person.

6 PM *FREE – Santa Train @ Downtown Birch Run (Birch Run)

Grab your family and friends and meet downtown for this spectacular FREE holiday event!  Santa arrives direct from the North Pole via the Lake State Railway, and then he makes his way to the gazebo at the corner of Main St. and Church St.

6 – 9 PM – Thomas Township 2019 Train & Light Festival@ Roethke Park (Saginaw)

Thomas Township 2019 Christmas Train & Light Festival

7 – 8 PM *FREE – The Polar Express Blowout Bash with the Midland Legacy Center @ Barnes & Noble (Midland)

To celebrate this classic holiday story, we are throwing a Storytime Blowout Bash with The Legacy Center for Community Success! This free event is perfect for all ages, and will feature an exciting Storytime, snacks, and fun activities!

7 – 9 PM *FREE – 2019 Living Nativity @ Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church of Frankentrost (Saginaw)

Join the pilgrim throng on its way to Bethlehem to be counted. Listen to the shepherds recount the angel’s message proclaiming the Christ’s birth. Hear the words of the prophets recall the ancient promises of the Savior. Experience the city alive with villagers living out the daily life of an ancient marketplace. Realize the terror of Roman rule and subjection to a foreign power. Feel poverty and homelessness as you make your way from the inn to stable.

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Saturday DECEMBER 7

8:40 AM Candy Cane Crawl @ Max & Emily’s Eatery (Mt. Pleasant)

Run for a cause!! All proceeds from the Jingle all the Way 5k & 5 mile race will go to the local Toys for Tots. There will be a toy donation box at the race so please bring a toy to donate. Donate extra and you’ll save on your entry fee, details below. The race will begin in front of Max & Emily’s as it has in years past. Kids run: There is also a candy cane crawl for the kids that is FREE!

9 AM *RSVP Breakfast with Santa and Mrs. Claus @ Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth (Frankenmuth)

Enjoy a special breakfast starting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, December 7th at Zehnder’s Restaurant with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Breakfast includes a Fruit Cup, Orange Juice, Muffins, Scrambled Eggs, Cinnamon French Toast, Sausage and Beverage. All children will receive a small gift from Santa. Cost is $17 per person and reservations are required. Please call (844) 288-1484 for reservations or for more information.

10 AM – 12 PM *FREEThe Polar Express Warming Station @ Veterans Memorial Library (Mt. Pleasant)

Stop into the library for hot chocolate and coffee at our Polar Express Warming Station. Enjoy live music by the Music Lady and see “The Polar Express” model train running around the track, all located in the children’s area at the library. Keepsake train tickets and bells available while supplies last. Don’t forget to take a stroll through Candy Cane Lane in the Annex.

10 AM – 5 PM  – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

11 AM – 2 PM – HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Treat yourself with a visit to The Pines of Dow Gardens this holiday season! The turn-of-the-century home will be adorned in holiday splendor throughout the month of December. During this event guests are welcomed to enjoy festive refreshments, listen to music, and explore the home at leisure. Docents will be available to answer questions. $7 for adults; $3 for kids

12 – 4 PM BRADLEY HOME HOLIDAYS @ Heritage Park (Midland)

Enjoy an old fashioned Victorian Christmas as you explore the 1874 Bradley Home decked out in traditional holiday splendor! Celebrate the season with parlor games, seasonal music, vintage ornaments, holiday crafts and more. Docent tours, holiday music, and selfies with Father Christmas will round out the day! Cost: $3/person and FREE for 3 years old and under.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

1 PM *RSVP Lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus @ Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth (Frankenmuth)

Enjoy a special lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Zehnder’s Splash Village on Saturday, December 7th at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. and December 14th at 12 noon. Lunch includes Chicken Tenders, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Fruit Cup, Christmas Cookie and Beverage. Children will receive a small gift from Santa. Cost is $17 per person and reservations are required. Please call (844) 288-1484 for reservations or for more information.

4 PM *RSVP  Lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus @ Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth (Frankenmuth)

Enjoy a special lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Zehnder’s Splash Village on Saturday, December 7th at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. and December 14th at 12 noon. Lunch includes Chicken Tenders, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Fruit Cup, Christmas Cookie and Beverage. Children will receive a small gift from Santa. Cost is $17 per person and reservations are required. Please call (844) 288-1484 for reservations or for more information.

5:30 PM *FREE Old Fashioned Christmas – Parade in St. Charles

5:30 – 8:30 PM *FREEA Night with Santa & Lighted Orchard @ Leaman’s Green Applebarn (Freeland)

Lighted orchard, lighted hayride, visit with Santa, free craft and free s’mores (while supplies last), and visits with Bob the Christmas Donkey. Admission: Canned food good or non perishable item per person.

6 – 8 PM *FREE2019 Living Nativity @ Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church of Frankentrost (Saginaw)

Join the pilgrim throng on its way to Bethlehem to be counted. Listen to the shepherds recount the angel’s message proclaiming the Christ’s birth. Hear the words of the prophets recall the ancient promises of the Savior. Experience the city alive with villagers living out the daily life of an ancient marketplace. Realize the terror of Roman rule and subjection to a foreign power. Feel poverty and homelessness as you make your way from the inn to stable.

6 – 9 PM – Thomas Township 2019 Train & Light Festival@ Roethke Park (Saginaw)

Bundle up for a wintery wonderland of Holiday lights aboard the Roethke Express. Santa and his elves will be waiting to hear your Christmas wish list and checking it twice!! $5 per person.

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Sunday DECEMBER 8

10 AM – 1:45 PM *RSVPHoliday Brunch with Santa Claus @ Apple Mountain (Freeland)

Join us for brunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus! This year’s brunches will feature a made to order omelet station, breakfast favorites, fresh salads, entrées, desserts and more! We will be offering seating times at 10am, 10:30am, 12pm and 12:30pm. Santa will be visiting from 10:30am to 1:30pm. Cost – Adults: $36 | Children (9-12): $19 | Children (4-8): $14. RSVP by calling 989-921-9527.

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

10 AM – 5 PM – Sundays in the City 2019 @ Downtown Bay City (Bay City)

The four Sundays leading up to Christmas showcase all of the “one-of-a-kind” shops and eateries that Downtown has to offer. Enjoy Holiday decorations, free horse-drawn carriage rides, strolling carolers, and holiday movies at the historic State Theatre.

12 – 4 PM – BRADLEY HOME HOLIDAYS @ Heritage Park (Midland)

Enjoy an old fashioned Victorian Christmas as you explore the 1874 Bradley Home decked out in traditional holiday splendor! Celebrate the season with parlor games, seasonal music, vintage ornaments, holiday crafts and more. Docent tours, holiday music, and selfies with Father Christmas will round out the day! Cost: $3/person and FREE for 3 years old and under.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

1 PM *FREEMovie: A Christmas Carol (2009) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

1 – 3 PM *FREE Santa Fly-In @ Jack Barstow Airport (Midland)

Santa is giving his reindeer a rest and bringing his airplane to visit the kids of Midland! Children will have the opportunity to sit on Santa’s lap and give him the letter they write at one of the craft tables. This is a FREE event open to all ages who believe in the magic of Christmas.

2 PM *FREE MEN OF MUSIC CHRISTMAS CONCERT @ First United Methodist Church (Midland)

The Men of Music perform a Christmas concert filled with sentimental favorites. Perfect for all ages!

4 PM *FREEMovie: A Christmas Story (1983) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

6 – 8 PM *FREE2019 Living Nativity @ Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church of Frankentrost (Saginaw)

Join the pilgrim throng on its way to Bethlehem to be counted. Listen to the shepherds recount the angel’s message proclaiming the Christ’s birth. Hear the words of the prophets recall the ancient promises of the Savior. Experience the city alive with villagers living out the daily life of an ancient marketplace. Realize the terror of Roman rule and subjection to a foreign power. Feel poverty and homelessness as you make your way from the inn to stable.

7 PM *FREE – MEN OF MUSIC CHRISTMAS CONCERT @ First United Methodist Church (Midland)

The Men of Music perform a Christmas concert filled with sentimental favorites. Perfect for all ages!

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Tuesday DECEMBER 10

3:30 – 7:30 PM – *FREESanford Express @ Sanford Museum (Sanford)

2019 Sanford Express in Sanford Michigan.

5 – 7 PM *FREEReindeer at Your Library @ Alice & Jack Wirt Public Library (Bay City)

See live reindeer outside and make reindeer crafts inside the library! Family fun for all ages. No registration. Camera use is encouraged!

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Wednesday DECEMBER 11

3:30 – 7:30 PM – *FREESanford Express @ Sanford Museum (Sanford)

Come out for a night of holiday fun with Santa! Enjoy free hot chocolate, cookies, and candy and see the museum grounds lit up in Christmas splendor. Visit Santa in the train depot. Kids get to talk with Santa plus receive a free gift and you can take a picture using your own camera or phone!

7 PM – YOUTH CHOIRS HOLIDAY CONCERT @ Midland Center for the Arts (Midland)

Nothing brings holiday cheer as quickly as children’s voices raised in song! Join the Center Stage Youth Choir ensembles as they present a delightful one-hour program of holiday favorites to start the season with a smile. Ticket Prices: $8

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Thursday DECEMBER 12

3:30 – 7:30 PM – *FREE –  Sanford Express @ Sanford Museum (Sanford)

Come out for a night of holiday fun with Santa! Enjoy free hot chocolate, cookies, and candy and see the museum grounds lit up in Christmas splendor. Visit Santa in the train depot. Kids get to talk with Santa plus receive a free gift and you can take a picture using your own camera or phone!

5 – 7 PM *FREEReindeer at Your Library @ Sage Branch Library (Bay City)

See live reindeer outside and make reindeer crafts inside the library! Family fun for all ages. No registration. Camera use is encouraged!

5 – 7:30 PM *FREEChristmas Walk @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Get ready to make your holidays bright at Dow Gardens! Stroll the gently-lit pathway from 5:00 PM until 7:30 PM each evening. Meet Santa’s reindeer, and listen to carolers sing the songs of the season. Be sure to warm up in the festive conservatory and experience a dramatic display of poinsettias, while enjoying the merry sound of a live string quartet.

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Friday DECEMBER 13

5 – 6:30 PM *RSVPFamily Swim with Santa at the Saginaw YMCA (Saginaw)

Did you know that Santa swims? Come join him for some splashes of fun with an opportunity for photos. Snacks and a holiday craft to follow! All ages: Kids under 7 must be within arms reach of an adult in the pool. Cost: $5 Y-Member Family or $10 non-Y Member Family. RSVP HERE.

5 – 7:30 PM *FREE – Christmas Walk @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Get ready to make your holidays bright at Dow Gardens! Stroll the gently-lit pathway from 5:00 PM until 7:30 PM each evening. Meet Santa’s reindeer, and listen to carolers sing the songs of the season. Be sure to warm up in the festive conservatory and experience a dramatic display of poinsettias, while enjoying the merry sound of a live string quartet.

5:30 – 8:30 PM *FREEA Night with Santa & Lighted Orchard @ Leaman’s Green Applebarn (Freeland)

Lighted orchard, lighted hayride, visit with Santa, free craft and free s’mores (while supplies last), and visits with Bob the Christmas Donkey. Admission: Canned food good or non perishable item per person.

6 – 8 PM *FREE – Holiday Open House @ Trombley House (Bay City)

Visit the parlor where the family entertained their guests and view old-fashioned dolls and toys, see the dining room where boarders once shared a meal, peer into the 1880s kitchen and smell the aroma of food prepared on a wood stove. Play a game with your children, enjoy the 1800s holiday ambiance and maybe a cookie and some hot chocolate, too!

6 – 9 PM – Thomas Township 2019 Train & Light Festival@ Roethke Park (Saginaw)

Bundle up for a wintery wonderland of Holiday lights aboard the Roethke Express. Santa and his elves will be waiting to hear your Christmas wish list and checking it twice!! $5 per person.

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Saturday DECEMBER 14

9:30 AM *RSVPBreakfast with Santa @ Trombley House (Bay City)

One special Saturday in December will be magical for children when they have a chance to sit down to breakfast with Santa himself! Seating is limited for this event, and reservations are required. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Tickets must be purchased in advance in the Museum Store, and there are no sales at the door. Tickets: $10.00/person

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

12 PM *RSVPLunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus @ Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth (Frankenmuth)

Enjoy a special lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Zehnder’s Splash Village on Saturday, December 7th at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. and December 14th at 12 noon. Lunch includes Chicken Tenders, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Fruit Cup, Christmas Cookie and Beverage. Children will receive a small gift from Santa. Cost is $17 per person and reservations are required. Please call (844) 288-1484 for reservations or for more information.

12 – 4 PM – BRADLEY HOME HOLIDAYS @ Heritage Park (Midland)

Enjoy an old fashioned Victorian Christmas as you explore the 1874 Bradley Home decked out in traditional holiday splendor! Celebrate the season with parlor games, seasonal music, vintage ornaments, holiday crafts and more. Docent tours, holiday music, and selfies with Father Christmas will round out the day! Cost: $3/person and FREE for 3 years old and under.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

3 PM – Tri City Chorus Christmas 2019 @ State Theatre (Bay City)

Tri-City Chorus is a member of Border Lakes Region #2 of Sweet Adelines International (SAI), a non-profit worldwide ladies barbershop organization that performs four-part harmony music. Barbershop music is one of a few forms of music native to the United States. Ticket $15

5 – 7:30 PM *FREEChristmas Walk @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Get ready to make your holidays bright at Dow Gardens! Stroll the gently-lit pathway from 5:00 PM until 7:30 PM each evening. Meet Santa’s reindeer, and listen to carolers sing the songs of the season. Be sure to warm up in the festive conservatory and experience a dramatic display of poinsettias, while enjoying the merry sound of a live string quartet.

5:30 – 8:30 PM *FREEA Night with Santa & Lighted Orchard @ Leaman’s Green Applebarn (Freeland)

Lighted orchard, lighted hayride, visit with Santa, free craft and free s’mores (while supplies last), and visits with Bob the Christmas Donkey. Admission: Canned food good or non perishable item per person.

6 PM *FREEAuburn Christmas Parade Of Lights 2019 @ Downtown Auburn (Auburn)

3rd annual Light parade. The theme is Rudolph kisses and candy cane wishes. Parade starts at 6pm and will end at Auburn park with Santa, tree lighting and activities.

6 – 8:30 PM – Living Nativity Drive Thru @ Faith Lutheran Church (Mt. Pleasant)

This Christmas, we would like to present the true meaning of Christmas to our community by hosting a living Nativity Scene with live animals. Experience a LIVING NATIVITY Drive Thru as you stay warm in your car and enjoy free cookies and hot chocolate.

6 – 9 PM – Thomas Township 2019 Train & Light Festival@ Roethke Park (Saginaw)

Bundle up for a wintery wonderland of Holiday lights aboard the Roethke Express. Santa and his elves will be waiting to hear your Christmas wish list and checking it twice!! $5 per person.

7:30 PM – HOLIDAY POPS @ Midland Center for the Arts (Midland)

Chris Mann, the classically trained star of The Phantom of the Opera—and contestant on Season 2 of NBC’s The Voice—joins the Midland Symphony Orchestra and Choirs of the Center to host this newly imagined event. The entire family will celebrate the most wonderful time of the year through beloved carols and music from timeless films, including “The Polar Express” and “Home Alone.” Young and old will be humming all the way into the New Year! Tickets Starting At $26.

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Sunday DECEMBER 15

10 AM – 1:45 PM *RSVPHoliday Brunch with Santa Claus @ Apple Mountain (Freeland)

Join us for brunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus! This year’s brunches will feature a made to order omelet station, breakfast favorites, fresh salads, entrées, desserts and more! We will be offering seating times at 10am, 10:30am, 12pm and 12:30pm. Santa will be visiting from 10:30am to 1:30pm. Cost – Adults: $36 | Children (9-12): $19 | Children (4-8): $14. RSVP by calling 989-921-9527.

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

10 AM – 5 PM *FREE –  Sundays in the City 2019 @ Downtown Bay City (Bay CIty)

The four Sundays leading up to Christmas showcase all of the “one-of-a-kind” shops and eateries that Downtown has to offer. Enjoy Holiday decorations, free horse-drawn carriage rides, strolling carolers, and holiday movies at the historic State Theatre.

12 – 4 PM – BRADLEY HOME HOLIDAYS @ Heritage Park (Midland)

Enjoy an old fashioned Victorian Christmas as you explore the 1874 Bradley Home decked out in traditional holiday splendor! Celebrate the season with parlor games, seasonal music, vintage ornaments, holiday crafts and more. Docent tours, holiday music, and selfies with Father Christmas will round out the day! Cost: $3/person and FREE for 3 years old and under.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

1 PM *FREEMovie: ELF (2003) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

2 – 4:30 PM – Skate with Santa @ Roll Arena (Midland)

4 PM *FREEMovie: Polar Express (1996) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

7 – 9 PM – A Christmas Carol @ Creative 360 (Midland)

Let your imagination take flight as our storytellers unfold this traditional telling of curmudgeon Ebenezer Scrooge and his journeys with three ghostly spirits. Combined with seasonal music, a holiday dessert, mulled wine and hot spiced cider, Creative 360’s Christmas Carol will become your family’s new holiday tradition! $15 pre-paid, $20 at the door

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Monday DECEMBER 16

7 PM –  Holiday Concert with The Bijou Orchestra @ State Theatre (Bay City)

Tickets: $10 – 25/ person

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Thursday DECEMBER 19

5 – 7:30 PM *FREEChristmas Walk @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Get ready to make your holidays bright at Dow Gardens! Stroll the gently-lit pathway from 5:00 PM until 7:30 PM each evening. Meet Santa’s reindeer, and listen to carolers sing the songs of the season. Be sure to warm up in the festive conservatory and experience a dramatic display of poinsettias, while enjoying the merry sound of a live string quartet.

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Friday DECEMBER 20

5 – 7:30 PM *FREEChristmas Walk @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Get ready to make your holidays bright at Dow Gardens! Stroll the gently-lit pathway from 5:00 PM until 7:30 PM each evening. Meet Santa’s reindeer, and listen to carolers sing the songs of the season. Be sure to warm up in the festive conservatory and experience a dramatic display of poinsettias, while enjoying the merry sound of a live string quartet.

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Saturday DECEMBER 21

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

12 – 4 PM – BRADLEY HOME HOLIDAYS @ Heritage Park (Midland)

Enjoy an old fashioned Victorian Christmas as you explore the 1874 Bradley Home decked out in traditional holiday splendor! Celebrate the season with parlor games, seasonal music, vintage ornaments, holiday crafts and more. Docent tours, holiday music, and selfies with Father Christmas will round out the day! Cost: $3/person and FREE for 3 years old and under.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

5 – 7:30 PM *FREEChristmas Walk @ Dow Gardens (Midland)

Get ready to make your holidays bright at Dow Gardens! Stroll the gently-lit pathway from 5:00 PM until 7:30 PM each evening. Meet Santa’s reindeer, and listen to carolers sing the songs of the season. Be sure to warm up in the festive conservatory and experience a dramatic display of poinsettias, while enjoying the merry sound of a live string quartet.

6 – 8 PM *FREEWinter Solstice Celebration @ Chippewa Nature Center (Midland)

For centuries, people have gathered with family and friends to recognize the longest night of the year and to celebrate the return of longer days to come. Take part in earth-friendly traditions as you roll a beeswax candle, create a miniature Yule log and make a small evergreen wreath to take home, and take a peaceful walk along the lighted Arbury Trail. You can also shop for the holidays at the Nature Center Store. FREE | All Ages, under 18 w/adult

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Sunday DECEMBER 22

10 AM – 1:45 PM *RSVPHoliday Brunch with Santa Claus @ Apple Mountain (Freeland)

Join us for brunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus! This year’s brunches will feature a made to order omelet station, breakfast favorites, fresh salads, entrées, desserts and more! We will be offering seating times at 10am, 10:30am, 12pm and 12:30pm. Santa will be visiting from 10:30am to 1:30pm. Cost – Adults: $36 | Children (9-12): $19 | Children (4-8): $14. RSVP by calling 989-921-9527.

10 AM – 5 PM – Baby Reindeer, Sleigh Rides & Christmas Trees @ Grandpa Tiny’s Farm (Frankenmuth)

Pre-cut and shaken fresh Christmas Trees will be available at the Farm starting the weekend before Thanksgiving. Have you ever pet a baby reindeer? Now is your chance! This will be an AMAZING photo opportunity in our Reindeer Barn to take family or children’s photos with our vintage sleigh & decorations along with a baby reindeer. Stay tuned for ticketing information and times available. Bundle up for cozy wagon rides around the farm to enjoy the scenery or sleigh rides if we get a white blanket over the landscape.

10 AM – 5 PM – Sundays in the City 2019 @ Downtown Bay City (Bay City)

The four Sundays leading up to Christmas showcase all of the “one-of-a-kind” shops and eateries that Downtown has to offer. Enjoy Holiday decorations, free horse-drawn carriage rides, strolling carolers, and holiday movies at the historic State Theatre.

12 – 7 PM – Santa’s Village @ Saginaw County Fairgrounds (Chesaning)

Santa’s Village is a beautiful indoor Christmas Wonderland held in the large heated exhibition hall at the Saginaw County Fairgrounds. Unlimited Amusement Rides, Joel Tacey Magical Comedy Shows, Kids Crafts, Bounce House, Model Train Display, and Visits with Santa Claus. Admission $10, Age 3-5 $5, Children 2 & under FREE, and Veterans & Active Service members FREE. For more information – 989-845-2143.

1 PM *FREEMovie: Its a Wonderful Life (1947) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

1 PM *FREEMovie: White Christmas (1954) @ State Theatre (Bay City)

The State Theatre “Sundays in the City” Movies Double Feature. Food or Cash Donations are accepted and appreciated to Benefit Safe Harbor Kitchen

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Tuesday DECEMBER 24

3 – 3:15 PM *FREESilent Night Sing Along at Silent Night Chapel @ Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland (Frankenmuth)

Join a member of the Bronner family and guest guitarist in the Silent Night Memorial Chapel as they lead everyone in singing “Silent Night.” This peaceful assembly is the perfect way to remember why we celebrate the Christmas season.

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Tuesday DECEMBER 31

10 AM – 4 PM – New Year’s Eve Countdown BLAST! @ Mid-Michigan Children’s Museum (Saginaw)

Shake, Rattle and Roll! Count down every hour on the hour at our New Year’s Eve Bash. Be prepared for crafts and games like make your own noise maker!

11 AM – 1 PM – Noon Year’s Eve Royal Ball @ Mt. Pleasant Discovery Museum (Mt. Pleasant)

Calling all Prince and Princesses!!! Ring in the New Year with MPDM! Guests can create magical crafts, build a castle, indulge in the ice cream sundae bar, and of course explore all of our hands-on exhibits! Dress up, or come as you are to celebrate the New Year! BALL DROPS AT THE STRIKE OF 12!

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Santa Houses

The Nate & MaryIda Doan Santa House

The Nate & MaryIda Doan Santa House

John F Kennedy Dr
Bay City, Michigan 48706

OPEN: Saturday, November 23 – December 22.

Weekdays 6:00 a 8:30 pm
Weekends 1-4 and 6- 8:30 pm

*FREE

Santa’s Village
Chesaning

Santa’s Village 

11350 Peet Rd
Chesaning, Michigan 48616

OPENS: Saturday, December 30 at 12 pm

December 1, 7, 14 , 15, 21 & 22 @ 12 – 7 pm

Cost: Adults & Children 6 and over $10
Children age 3-5 $5
Children 2 and under FREE
Veterans and Active Service members FREE

Midland Santa House

Midland Santa House 

Main St
Midland, Michigan

OPENS: Tuesday, December 3 at 7 pm

Daily Schedule

*FREE

Bronners CHRISTmas Wonderland
Frankenmuth

Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland

25 Christmas Ln
Frankenmuth, Michigan 48734

OPENS: November 29 – December 24

Monday-Friday: 10am – 7pm
Saturday: 9:15am – 7pm
Sunday: Noon – 5:30pm.
**Special hours on Christmas Eve: 9:15am-3pm.**

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LIGHT SHOWS

Roenicke Light Show (Saginaw)

Christmas and Halloween light shows choreographed to music!

Freeland Lights (Freeland)

The show is computer driven, running EVERY DAY – regardless of the weather- from December 1st thru December 31st. The show starts daily at 5:30 pm, with the last show starting at 10:00 pm. Each show will last around 12 minutes, with a 3 minute break between shows. (Approximate show times: 5:30, 5:45, 6:15, 6:30 etc…)

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*Did I miss something?  CONTACT me to have your event listed.

** KIDS DAILY CALENDAR is packed full with fun family events in the Great Lakes Bay!