Bull Run Festival of Lights- Nov. 6 – Jan. 10
Experience the Bull Run Festival of Lights, 2.5 miles illuminated by holiday light displays. Drive the festival route from the comfort of your car; turn out your headlights and just follow the magical glow. After viewing the lights, bring your family and friends to the holiday village to enjoy rides, refreshments, and of course, photos with Santa Claus.
Winter Walk of Lights at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens– Nov. 11 – Jan. 3
Bring the family to enjoy the magical Winter Walk of lights in Vienna, Virginia. The garden is transformed into a half-mile, animated walk of lights. Put on your walking shoes and bring the family to experience a Northern Virginia festive tradition. Purchase tickets online.
Downtown Holiday Market- Nov. 20 – Dec. 23
The 16th Annual Downtown Holiday Market, Washington D.C.’s outdoor shopping village is a beloved outdoor market which continues to support small businesses and entrepreneurs across the region, welcoming shoppers for a safe, secure and enhanced shopping experience in the heart of the District this year. This year’s retail lineup will feature more than 70 exhibitors including Black-owned and minority-owned businesses from the DC Department of Small and Local Business Development’s (DSLBD) Made in DC program and this season’s trending styles from the BID’s District of Fashion Show local designer collections.
Ride the Reindeer Railway at B&O Railroad Museum– Nov. 20 – Jan. 3
The B&O celebrates the wonder and joy of the holiday season with family-friendly festivities. Our famous train is no exception! This year, the Mile One Express transforms into the Reindeer Railway offering a festive train ride on the nation’s first mile. The train ride includes child-size reindeer antlers for all child tickets. You can also reserve tickets to have breakfast with Santa.
Seasons Greenings at The U.S. Botanic Gardens– Nov. 23 – Jan. 10
The United States Botanic Garden will have expanded online programming and limited holiday decorations this year. Festive adornments, winterberries, lights, and greenery will be placed in the Terrace Gardens and Bartholdi Park from Nov. 23, 2020, through Jan. 10, 2021. There will not be a train display this year, and the Conservatory and gated outdoor gardens remain closed at this time due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Merriweather Symphony of Lights– Nov. 25 – Jan. 2
The Symphony of Lights has been a time-honored Howard County holiday tradition set in historic Merriweather Post Pavilion. Made up of more than 300,000 bulbs, this family-oriented spectacular is a dazzling display of larger-than-life animated and stationary holiday light creations. With the addition of new lights and a refreshed course, your time through the twinkling, winding path will surely be a night to remember! You can even celebrate New Year’s Eve with the entire family at the Symphony of Lights + a final walk through the light displays!
Winter Glow at Mount Vernon– Nov. 27 – 29, Dec. 11 – 13 & 26 – 28
Join for an enchanting evening of winter lights at Mount Vernon. See the estate illuminated with soft lights and holiday patterns as you listen to Christmas carolers and visit an 18th-century winter encampment.
Festival of Lights at Watkins Regional Park– Nov. 27 – Jan. 1
Bring a little twinkle to your holidays. Don’t miss this spectacular holiday drive-through event featuring more than 2.5 million twinkling lights! This year’s Festival features fun new displays.You won’t want to miss the giant, 54-foot LED musical tree! Purchase your tickets ahead of time.
Santa at B&O Railroad Museum and Northeast Maglev– Nov. 27
The holiday season is officially here when Santa comes to town, and we hope you’ll join us in greeting him when he arrives back in Baltimore aboard the B&O No. 6944! Santa’s locomotive will pull into the B&O Railroad Museum’s spacious Roundhouse, creating the perfect opportunity to take the first safe, socially distanced festive photos of the season. Once Santa enters the B&O to celebrate the Holiday Festival of Trains with you, additional seated photos will be available for purchase. Santa and his helpers will be wearing masks and the photo area is expanded to incorporate safe physical distancing. All activities and events are designed for a safe and fun visit so families can focus on the joy of the season. Tickets include full access to the B&O Holiday Festival of Trains offering a holiday wonderland of lights, Santa’s Winter Village shops and spectacular model train layouts to explore.
The Grinch’s Grotto at Tyson’s Corner– Nov. 27 – Dec. 31
This 2020 Holiday Season belongs to the Grinch. From the creators of The Dr. Seuss Experience, step into the Grinch’s Grotto, and commemorate the Grinchiest of years with our favorite green resident just north of Whoville. When you reserve your spot, you and your loved ones will get a rare opportunity to visit the Grinch in his special cave and strike a pose (or two) with him. Plus, you won’t leave empty-handed. Each group will emerge with not just a photo taken by a professional photographer, but also with a few extra special Grinchy surprises. Space will be very limited to ensure social distancing, so make sure and reserve your spot early! Now doesn’t all of this sound like a wonderful, awful idea?
Tenley WinterFest– Nov. 27 – Dec. 5
Tenley WinterFest is an eight-day celebration of the holiday season designed to showcase local businesses, community groups, and the neighborhood – all with a unique Tenleytown flair and lots of yetis.
Winter Lights at Seneca Creek State Park– Nov. 27 – Dec. 31 (closed on Dec. 25)
The wondrous themed display of lights at Seneca Creek State Park is a 3.5 mile drive through the enchanted setting taking you past more than 450 illuminated displays and 65 animated vignettes that light up the night. Purchase tickets ahead of time.
Festival of Trees– Nov. 27 – Nov. 29
The festivities you love will be online. Tree and wreath sales, gift boutiques, games, auction and raffle will happen 24 hours a day. Plus, family entertainment each day! All to support the kids of Kennedy Krieger Institute.
Lighting of the Wharf Tree– Nov. 27 at 6:00pm
Kick off the holiday season at The Wharf as we officially light our Christmas tree and transform the waterfront into a winter wonderland with thousands of twinkling lights. Bring your family to The Wharf for photos next to the 45-foot pine tree, then enjoy dinner together at one of our many restaurants. End your evening by roasting s’mores around the firepit at Camp Wharf!
Movies at the Wharf– Nov. 27 – Dec. 31
The holidays are the perfect time to cozy up by a firepit with hot drinks and a classic holiday movie on the big screen. Head to The Wharf throughout this holiday season for a pop-up outdoor movie theatre on Transit Pier where you can enjoy all the Christmas classics from your private firepit in front of a 20′ LED screen.
- Home Alone: Fri. Nov. 27, 6pm | Sat. Nov. 28, 2 & 6 pm | Sun. Nov. 29, 2pm
- Elf: Fri. Dec. 4, 6pm | Sat. Dec. 5, 2 & 6 pm | Sun. Dec. 6, 2pm
- How the Grinch Stole Christmas:Fri. Dec. 11, 6pm | Sat. Dec. 12, 2 & 6 pm | Sun. Dec. 13, 2pm
- A Christmas Story: Fri. Dec. 18, 6pm | Sat. Dec. 19 , 2 & 6 pm | Sun. Dec. 20, 2pm
- Miracle on 34th Street: Thu. Dec. 24, 2pm
- Die Hard: Sat. Dec. 26, 2pm & 6pm
- Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas: Sun. Dec. 27, 2pm & 6pm
- The Polar Express: Mon. Dec. 28, 2pm & 6pm
- The Santa Clause: Tue. Dec. 29, 2pm & 6pm
- National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation: Wed. Dec. 30, 2pm & 6pm
- Gremlins: Thu. Dec. 31, 2pm
Lower Georgia Avenue Main Street Holiday Lights– Dec. 1 – 31
Whether you’re a local resident or just visiting for a few days—stop by Lower Georgia Avenue Main Street Holiday Lights to explore, shop, and play this holiday season. The businesses along Lower Georgia Avenue Main Street and the 800 Block of Upshur Street will be decked out with holiday lights. Wander the corridor with neighbors and visitors to enjoy amazing holiday events, activities, and promotions throughout the month. And don’t forget to VOTE for your favorite light displays between December 1st and 14th. Learn more about the competition and award categories.
National Christmas Tree on the Ellipse– Dec. 3 – Jan. 1
The show will be available to stream on-demand throughout the holiday season. Due to COVID-19-related public health concerns, the National Park Service (NPS) and National Park Foundation (NPF) will not host a live audience at the 2020 National Christmas Tree Lighting. The National Christmas Tree will be lit every evening throughout December. Visitors are invited to President’s Park to view the National Christmas Tree and 56 trees representing every U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia, decorated with ornaments designed by students from across the country.
Christmas Village at Leesburg Animal Park– December 4, 5, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20, 22, & 23
Photos with Santa Claus from 6:30-8:30pm, Christmas arts & crafts room, live animal encounters, holiday photos with live animals, kid’s indoor play zone and more, bonfire & marshmallow roasting, thousands of outdoor holiday lights, nativity scene, animal petting & feeding, Christmas tree & wreath sales from local farms.
Merry & Bright at Tudor Place– Dec. 4-5, 11-12, 18-19
This holiday season, the Tudor Place garden will be illuminated with an array of lights. Explore sparkling garden rooms, twinkling lawns and shimmering tunnels of light. Stroll through the 5 ½ acre garden and celebrate the season at Tudor Place. Enjoy hot chocolate or hot cider on the South Lawn. Hourly tickets are available for purchase at 4:30pm, 5:30pm and 6:30pm.
Georgetown Glow– Dec. 4 – Jan. 10
Experience the sparkle of the season at Georgetown GLOW, the region’s only curated exhibition of outdoor public light art installations. Set against the historic backdrop of DC’s oldest neighborhood, it’s a whole new way to shine.
Holiday Market- Dec. 5, 12, & 19 from 10am – 2pm
Park View Farmers Market at Hook Hall this December for the Park View Holiday Market! The market will feature local artisans, makers, and food vendors. You will find hand-crafted gifts and holiday cheer. COVID-19 safety precautions will be strictly followed.
Lighting of the Menorah at the Wharf– Dec. 6 at 5:00pm
Come to The Wharf to celebrate the Festival of Lights. We’re continuing the annual tradition of lighting the menorah in District Square for each night of Hanukkah.
Light Yards– Dec. 7 – Jan. 10 from 6:00pm-10:00pm
The Yards is bringing back Light Yards for its fifth year at The Yards Park! Light Yards will continue its tradition as an opportunity to safely celebrate the holidays in a fun and socially-distant way during a time when many holiday traditions and events are not possible. The annual holiday installation will feature the premiere of the installation “Stars” by Australian-based immersive light design sculptors Amigo & Amigo. The larger-than-life stars constructed from metallic mesh feature dancing lights and play festive music, making for a perfect socially-distanced stroll for guests of all ages who want to safely experience some holiday cheer. This free-to-all installation will begin on December 7th and be illuminated nightly from 6-10pm at The Yards.
National Menorah Lighting on the Ellipse– Dec. 10 at 4:00pm
Grab tickets in advance!
Festival of Lights at the Mormon Temple– December 11- December 28
The annual Festival of Lights is one of Washington, DC area’s great community traditions. The tradition continues for the 2020 Christmas season in a modified way, putting safety and health first. Beginning December 11th, the Festival of Lights will open as a drive-through experience.
Chanukah Experience– Dec. 12 & 13
The Chanukah Story comes to life with an epic audio-visual presentation in a Covid-safe manner. From the safety of their cars, families will literally drive-thru the Chanukah story as multiple illustrations, props and actors bring the 2500-year-old Chanukah story to life. Guided by a professionally created soundtrack, they will experience the Chanukah events as it would be happening in real-time. Participants will meet [at a distance] the Chanukah characters and pick up souvenirs and treats as they move through the Chanukah story.
Laurie Berkner’s ‘holiday party’– 12:00pm & 5:00pm
“Get out your holiday lights, dreidels, nutcrackers, candy canes, Hanukkah gelt, wreaths, and stockings!” says Laurie Berkner. “Maybe your Christmas tree or menorah is already out. You could make a gingerbread house, an ornament, or some hot cocoa, and bring them to the show. Let’s build a winter wonderland together!”
Holiday Market at Victura Park (Kennedy Center)- Through December 20
Trim the trees and light the candles, this winter season, Victura Park is transforming into a festive holiday market! Every weekend our weekend outdoor market will feature an amazing line up of local artists, craftspersons, and other specialized vendors.
Zoo Lights at The National Zoo–
EFFECTIVE MONDAY, NOV. 23: As a public health precaution due to COVID-19, all Smithsonian museums will temporarily close. They are not announcing a reopening date at this time and will provide updates on websites and social media.
The District’s Holiday Boat Parade–
Cancelled this year
Garden of Lights at Brookside Gardens–
Will not open this season
Holidays on the Harbor–
Events are cancelled as of now
Alexandria Holiday Boat Parade of Lights–
Cancelled this year
Holly Trolley Fest at National Capital Trolley Museum–