Holiday Season, Dallas Style

Published November 21, 2012 by Julie Provenzano

This weekend marks the kick off to the holiday season, so gobble up that turkey, get off the couch and discover Dallas’ best in seasonal entertainment, sensational sights and tantalizing tastes.  Check out these fantastic events because before we know it we’ll be singing Auld Lang Syne to 2012.

Capital One/YMCA Turkey Trot

Of course, we must start with the Trot.  The 44 year old YMCA sponsored race is the place to be for Dallasites and newcomers alike to ring in the holiday season.  Don your favorite wacky turkey garb and head over to Dallas City Hall Plaza on Marilla Street on the morning of November 22 to celebrate Thanksgiving Day in true Dallas style.  Register here for the 5k run/walk or the 8 mile run, and burn some extra calories before you even take your first bite of the bird.

Chinese Lantern Festival

Fair Park comes alive after dark with the Chinese Lantern Festival.  Running through January 6, the festival brings together culture, tradition and imagination in the form of a dazzling display of light.  Enjoy traditional artisan handcrafts in the market place and sample a bit of Chinese culinary culture.  There are also traditional Texas choices for those less inclined to the tastes of the Far East.  The show is open nightly from 5 to 10 pm.

Gaylord Texan

It’s a real Lone Star Christmas at the Gaylord Texan.  Check in and enjoy a mini holiday before the Holiday.  Experience the magic with 15 million sparkling lights, a 50 foot tall Holiday tree, ice sculptures and several dining and entertainment options.  For the younger set there’s Merry Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda and of course the gang from Shrek, teaming up to bring a dream-like DreamWorks Holiday extravaganza for kids and parents alike.  Weekend and weekday packages are available, as well as daily tickets for those not requiring accommodation.

Trains at Northpark

Running through January 6, the Trains at Northpark mall exhibit is sure to please young and old alike.  Get some Holiday shopping done in the expansive upscale shopping venue, and when you need a break head over to Barney’s of New York and get your patriotic groove on as you view the largest display of toy trains in Texas.  Covering 4,000 square feet, the trains run through beautiful landscapes showcasing the unique and diverse expanse of our country from sea to shining sea.  Lady Liberty, Route 66, The Golden Gate Bridge and of course highlights from the Big D come together to create an enchanting world of toy rail.

Skating at Galleria Dallas

Don't miss the fun at Galleria Mall.  Take in the holiday sights and sounds while you skate around the mall's iconic holiday tree.  The annual Macy's Grand Tree Lighting Celebration takes place on November 23, and features a performance by Olympic Champion Brian Boitano. 

Children's Medical Center Holiday Parade

What is the holiday season without a parade?  Head downtown on December 1st and catch the 25th anniversary version of this Dallas tradition.  With ticket proceeds benefiting Children's Medical Center, and variety of floats and street entertainers, the Holiday Parade will not disappoint.


Texas Ballet Theater hosts an all new production this year bringing fresh life to the Holiday classic.  Whether you’re continuing family tradition or beginning anew, witnessing the sights and sounds of The Nutcracker is a Holiday treat for theater goers of all ages.  Another not to miss production this holiday season is Dallas Theater Center’s performance of A Christmas Carol.  Rediscover the reason for the season at this festive production of the Dickens classic.

Though the weather here in North Texas may not be frightful, these Dallas holiday traditions are sure to delight.

Galleria Tree