December 23, 2015


CLEVELAND (Dec. 23, 2015) - The hustle of the holidays sends people running from place to place - in search of the greatest gift, a delicious dining option or a magical holiday event. Destination Cleveland hopes to simplify the last-minute search for festive family outings with its "one-stop-shopping guide" of holiday happenings occurring between now and New Years. Click here for Cleveland's 2015 Winter Itinerary or browse through the event schedule below for ways that your family can have a bright and jolly Cleveland holiday.


Downtown Cleveland
Holiday Events at Tower City Center
• 230 W. Huron Road, Cleveland, 44113, 216.771.0033, www.towercitycenter.com/events
• Now - Dec. 23 (Various dates)
• This holiday season, Tower City presents a range of holiday events including 2015 Kringle's Toy Shoppe® Hours, the Holiday Express Train Ride, Bruce the Talking Spruce and the Mr. Kringle & Company Inventionasium.

Winter Waterland, featuring SCUBA Claus at the Greater Cleveland Aquarium
• 2000 Sycamore Street, Cleveland, 44113, 216.862.8803, http://greaterclevelandaquarium.com
• Now - Dec. 24
• The Greater Cleveland Aquarium has been transformed into an underwater winter wonderland, featuring larger-than-life decorations, twinkling lights, holiday crafts, live music and caroling. Guests of Greater Cleveland Aquarium's Winter Waterland can also meet SCUBA Claus as he dives into the Shark SeaTube exhibit.

Playhouse Square Holiday Performances
• 1501 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, 44115, 216.771.4444, www.playhousesquare.org
• Playhouse Square is the largest performing arts center in the country outside of New York. The five beautifully restored historic theaters and four newer performance spaces are home to the KeyBank Broadway Series, concerts, comedy shows, Cleveland Play House, Cleveland State University's Department of Theatre and Dance, Great Lakes Theater Company and Tri-C Jazz Festival.
• Performances include:
o Now - Dec. 23 - A Christmas Carol, Ohio Theatre
o Now - Dec. 23 - A Christmas Story 2015, Cleveland Playhouse
o Dec. 29 - Jan. 3 - Elf, Connor Palace

December Days at the Zoo at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and The RainForest
• 3900 Wildlife Way, Cleveland, 44109, 216.661.6500, www.clevelandmetroparks.com/zoo
• Dec. 26 - 30
• December Days at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and The RainForest features special seasonal activities including holiday crafts, live music, cookie decorating, heated shuttles that take visitors around the zoo and more.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra at Quicken Loans Arena
• One Center Court, Cleveland, 44115, 888.894.9424, www.theqarena.com
• Dec. 30
• Quicken Loans Arena hosts the nationally-acclaimed rock opera Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

A Christmas Story House and Museum
• 3159 W 11th Street, Cleveland, 44109, 216.298.4919, www.achristmasstoryhouse.com
• Open year round, daily
• Leg lamp entrepreneur, Brian Jones, bought the house in Cleveland's Tremont neighborhood where "Black Bart" and other scenes from A Christmas Story took place and restored it to its big screen look with original props and images for public viewing. Visitors should be sure to head across the street to the gift shop to purchase major award leg lamps, official Red Ryder BB-guns, secret society decoder pins, Lifebuoy Soap and other gifts.

University Circle
Celebrations: Holiday Traditions in CLE in the Western Reserve, The Cleveland History Center
• 10825 East Blvd., Cleveland, 44106, 216.721.5722, www.wrhs.org
• Dec. 26-27 and 29-31
• Visitors are invited to create a new holiday tradition with the entire family at Celebrations: Holiday Traditions. Featuring Higbee's Department Store holiday window displays, rides on the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel and holiday crafts, there is something for all ages at this exhibit.

The Children's Museum of Cleveland: New Year's Eve Celebration
• 10730 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, 44106, 216.791.7114, www.clevelandchildrensmuseum.org
• Dec. 31
• Celebrate the coming New Year complete with noisemakers, party hats, music and games at the Children's Museum of Cleveland on Dec. 31. Countdowns to the New Year will occur at 11am, noon and 1pm.

Cleveland Pops 20th Annual New Year's Eve Celebration at Severance Hall
• 1101 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, 44106, 216.231.7421, www.severancehall.com
• Dec. 31
• Ring in the New Year with conductor, Carl Topilow, popular vocalist Connor Bogart O'Brien, and the Cleveland Pops. The evening begins with an unforgettable Broadway Revue and continues on featuring a jazz and rock band to dance you right into 2016.

Glow at the Cleveland Botanical Garden
• 11030 East Blvd., Cleveland, 44106, 216.721.1600, www.cbgarden.org
• Now - Jan. 3
• Visitors can head to the Cleveland Botanical Garden to see the spectacular holiday event, Glow. There, they can enjoy twinkling lights and live Christmas music while riding the Garden Express train, view 15 outdoor lighting displays, designed and built by employees from GE Lighting and students from MC2 STEM High School in Cleveland, and view the Holden Arboretum's Nutcracker collection.

Wade Oval Winter
• 10820 East Blvd., Cleveland, 44106, 216.791.3900, www.universitycircle.org
• Now - Mar. 6
• As one of Cleveland's only outdoor ice-skating rinks, The Rink at Wade Oval is open from Thanksgiving weekend through March 6. The perfect complement to the multiple holiday events in University Circle, families can ice skate in beautiful Wave Oval Park in University Circle and use their wristbands for discounts to select museums, gardens and galleries. On Wednesdays throughout December, The Rink at Wade Oval features outdoor concerts, movie nights and Skate with Santa.

Regional Events
Holiday Lantern Tours at Hale Farm and Village
• 2686 Oak Hill, Bath, 44210, 330.666.3711, www.wrhs.org/plan-your-visit/hale-farm
• Now - Dec. 23 (various dates)
• Guests can stroll through the 19th century village by the light of a lantern and experience the holiday season of years past at Holiday Lantern Tours at Hale Farm and Village. Visitors embark on an evening stroll through time back to Christmas Eve 1861 and are welcomed into the village homes by Civil War era residents whose holiday traditions are as diverse as their backgrounds.

Dec. 25th Can Can at The Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage
• 2929 Richmond Road, Beachwood, 44122, 216.593.0575, www.maltzmuseum.org
• Dec. 25
• Take part in a special "Give what you can, pay what you can" day and get into the spirit of the holidays by bringing a canned donation to use as your admission to the Maltz Museum. Spend the day listening to the inspirational stories shared during the Violins of Hope, exploring The Temple-Tifereth Israel Gallery or learning about the contributions made by the Jewish community.

Deck the Hall: Gingerbread Land at Stan Hywet
• 714 North Portage Path, Akron, 44303, www.stanhywet.org
• Now - Jan. 2 (select evenings)
• The elaborate 65-room Manor House at Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens hosts its annual holiday celebration, Deck the Hall. Festivities include live music and "Dazzle," a 10-minute, dramatic computerized lights program with more than 800,000 lights that plays three times each hour in the Great Garden. Additionally, the Playgarden has been transformed into a Gingerbread Land where visitors can meet the gingerbread family, see a 17-foot gingerbread house, giant peppermint candy canes and a 20-foot glittering candy tree.

Castle Noel
• 260 S. Court Street, Medina, 44256, 330.721.NOEL (6635), www.castlenoel.com
• Open year round; extended holiday hours: Now - Jan. 3
• Castle Noel is America's largest indoor Christmas museum attraction featuring exhibits such as Christmas Movieland, complete with props from Christmas movie favorites, including Cousin Eddie's RV from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and the Grinch's sleigh from Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas; Christmas-themed, animated department store window displays; a classic Christmas Toyland and more.

Christmas Dancing Light Show at Ghostly Manor Thrill Center
• 3319 Milan Road, Sandusky, 44870, 419.626.4467, www.ghostlymanor.com
• Now - Dec. 31
• After Halloween, the spirits are put to rest at Ghostly Manor Thrill Center, and the facility becomes a 3D North Pole adventure. Visitors can take a once-in-a-lifetime "Snow Ride" in the XD 4D Motion Theater and then stick around for the Christmas Light Show. Choreographed to seven songs over FM radio, visitors watch a 25-minute light show synchronized with more than 75,000 lights from the warmth of their own vehicle.

Penitentiary Glen Nature Center: Wild Days of Winter at Lake Metroparks
• 8668 Kirtland-Chardon Road, Kirtland, 44094, 440.256.1404, www.lakemetroparks.com
• Now - Jan. 3
• Visitors are invited to sing and play along in the indoor winter playland at Penitentiary Glen Reservation. Visitors can play on a life-size game board, take a turn to roll the dice, move along from space to space and discover the many things that nature gives to us in the winter season. There also are family crafts, scavenger hunts, as well as a classic board game exhibition.

Snowland at Great Wolf Lodge
• 4600 Milan Road, Sandusky, 44870, 419.609.6000, www.greatwolf.com
• Now - Jan. 3
• Visitors can celebrate the magic of winter at Snowland at the Great Wolf Lodge in Sandusky. From snow showers and twinkling lights in the Grand Lobby to gingerbread houses and interactive activities, Snowland has something for everyone to enjoy.

Walleye Madness at Midnight at Port Clinton
• www.walleyemadness.com; Festivities will take place on Madison Street in the heart of downtown Port Clinton; directions can be found here.
• Dec. 31
• New York City might celebrate the New Year with a glittering ball, but the town of Port Clinton rings in the coming year with a 20-foot-tall, 600-pound fiberglass walleye. Yes, a walleye - 30 times the size of the average walleye fish - is lowered by a massive crane to the cheering townspeople below. If that's not enough, there's tons of walleye-themed fun all night long, too.

First Night Akron in Downtown Akron
• www.firstnightakron.org, 330.374.7690; Festivities will take place in Downtown Akron; directions can be found here.
• Dec. 31
• Downtown Akron hosts its 20th annual First Night Akron, a family-friendly and alcohol-free celebration of the arts including music, dance, theater, visual/interactive art and fireworks. Admission is $10 and children under the age of ten are free.

Toboggan Chute at the Cleveland Metroparks Chalet
• 16200 Valley Parkway, Strongsville, 440.572.9990, www.clevelandmetroparks.com
• Now - March 6 (weather permitting)
• This winter, visitors can experience the thrill of tobogganing at The Chalet in Mill Stream Run Reservation in Strongsville. The two 1,000-foot-long refrigerated ice chutes operate with or without snow, weather permitting, and are frozen fun for everyone all season.

Ma & Pa's Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides, Burton
• 15161 Main Market Road, Burton, 44021, 440.548.5521, www.maandpas.com
• Now - mid March
• There's nothing more seasonal than dashing through the snow in a one-horse-open sleigh. Visitors can create a lasting winter memory cuddled under a blanket and riding through the snow in an authentic sleigh or buggy in the town of Burton at Ma & Pa's Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides, approximately 40 miles southeast of Cleveland. Afterwards, they can warm up by the fire with fresh coffee and cookies made by Burton's own Mrs. Claus, better known as "Ma."

Don't forget: Destination Cleveland's Cleveland Concierge Team is also available to help you explore the region during the holiday season. Contact our team through email or chat at www.thisiscleveland.com, or stop in the Cleveland Visitors Center Mon.-Sat., 9am-6pm to plan your adventure.


Destination Cleveland is Cleveland's Convention and Visitors Bureau. This private non-profit organization's mission is to drive economic impact and stimulate community vitality for Greater Cleveland through leisure and business travel. Cleveland welcomes more than 16 million visitors annually. For more information, visit www.ThisisCleveland.com.

Jennifer Kramer, Destination Cleveland

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