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Holiday Fun Across the Palmetto State - The Midlands
As the winter holidays are approaching, there are many exciting events happening throughout South Carolina for families to celebrate the season.
Annual Candlelight Tour of Homes and Anniversary Kick Off Party
The 40th Anniversary of Camden's Candlelight Tour of Homes will have a kick off party to celebrate! There will be a Holiday Silent Auction, food from Aberdeen and live music with the Reggie Sullivan Band. Then the next night the Candlelight Tour of Homes will begin. The tour is self-paced with 14 of the city's oldest homes and historical sites, and will begin at the Camden Archives Museum.
Kick Off Party - Dec. 9 (Friday) - 7:00 P.M. - 10:00 P.M. - Camden
Candlelight Tour - Dec. 10 (Saturday) - 3:00 - 8:00 P.M. - Camden
Annual Menorah Lighting at the Statehouse
The Isadore E. Lourie Memorial Menorah will be lit for the 10th Annual Menorah lighting at the South Carolina Statehouse. All faiths are welcome.
Dec. 27 (Tuesday) - 5:30 P.M. - S.C. State House, Columbia
Christmas Candlelight Tours
A Southern-style Backcountry Christmas comes to life during Historic Brattonsville’s annual Christmas Candlelight Tours! Through candlelit vignettes, costumed interpreters will recreate Christmas of the backcountry settlers in the 18th and 19th centuries. There will also be campfires and live entertainment. Children can enjoy hands-on activities and visits with Father Christmas.
Dec. 10 (Saturday) - 3:00 - 9:00 P.M. - Historic Brattonsville
Columbia City Ballet Presents "The Nutcracker"
A holiday tradition in Columbia, the classic story of The Nutcracker comes to life through the Columbia City Ballet.
Dec. 10 - 11 and Dec. 17 - 18 (Sunday) - 3:00 P.M. and 7:30 PM (Matinees only on Sundays) - Koger Center
Florence Festival of Lights
Head to Florence for the third annual Festival of Lights at Hoffmeyer Place. There will be marshmallow roasting and more at Santa's Village. Proceeds will benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Dec. 9 - 10 and Dec. 16 - 18 (Sunday) - Florence
Holiday Lights on the River
The Midlands largest drive-through lights show comes alive at Saluda Shoals Park. There are over 400 animated light displays, tube sliding, the Saluda Shoals Train, marshmallow toasting and even a new ice skating rink.
Dec. 8 - Dec. 31 (Saturday) - 6:00 - 10:00 P.M. - Excludes Christmas Eve and Christmas - Irmo
Historic Holiday House Tours
Historic Columbia is ushering in the holiday season. See the decorations and traditions of the past in the Robert Mills House and Hampton-Preston Mansion. Guides will provide stories of holidays past in Columbia and discuss how families decorated and entertained during the 19th and 20th centuries. Other events will also be a part of the Historic Holidays including candlelight tours and carriage rides.
Now - Dec. 31 (Sunday) - Admission and hours will vary - Columbia
Lancaster Annual Christmas Parade
The Annual Christmas Parade will begin in the Cultural Arts District in Historic Downtown Lancaster! Lancaster's Grand Marshal and the Buford Varsity Ladies Softball State Champions will lead the parade. This year's theme is "Ugly Christmas Sweater"!
Dec. 10 (Saturday) - 6:00 P.M. - Historic Downtown Lancaster
Laser Holidays / Christmas Laser Fantasy: Mannheim Steamroller Christmas
Celebrate the holidays with a display of colorful and dramatic laser lights. Laser Holidays features holiday music favorites, and Christmas Laser Fantasy will have laser lights choreographed to the music of Mannheim Steamroller.
Now - Jan. 1, 2017 (Sunday) - Dates and showtimes will vary - South Carolina State Museum Planetarium
Lights Before Christmas
Riverbanks Zoo hosts the Lights Before Christmas, a Midlands holiday favorite. With around one million lights, animations, Santa visits, the Jingle Bell Bonfire and more, this event is fun for the whole family.
Now - Dec. 30 (Friday) - 5:00 P.M. - 9:00 P.M. - excludes Dec. 24 and Dec. 25 - Riverbanks Zoo, Columbia
Lights, Cocoa & Sufganiyot
Celebrate the end of Chanukah for jelly doughnuts, fresh latkes and hot cocoa. The giant JCC menorah will be lit at 5:15 P.M., but smaller menorahs and candles are welcome!
Dec. 13 (Sunday) - 5:00 p.m. - Katie & Irwin Jewish Community Center, Columbia
Main Street ICE
Boyd Plaza has brought back Main Street ICE, the City of Columbia's outdoor ice skating rink at the corner of Main and Hampton streets. Enjoy ice skating in the South in front of the Columbia Museum of Art.
Now - Jan. 1, 2017 (Sunday) - Hours will vary - Main St., Columbia
North Pole Night Downtown
On Fridays in December, visit downtown Newberry to experience an evening at the North Pole! There will be "falling snow" in Memorial Park and on Dec. 9 and 16, there will free Christmas crafts and story time at the Chamber of Commerce at Community Hall.
Dec. 9 and 16 (Friday) - 6:00 P.M. - 9:00 P.M. - Downtown Newberry
The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical
Trustus Theatre presents "The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical"! It's holiday time in Armadillo Acres. Trailer park storytellers Betty, Lin and Pickes will tell you the story of the wildest Christmas ever in the trailer park.
Dec. 8 - 11 and Dec. 16 - 18 (Sunday) - Times and admission will vary - Trustus Theater, Columbia
The Polar Express 4D
The South Carolina State Museum's Rev. Dr. Solomon Jackson, Jr. 4D Interactive Theater combines 3-D film with real life sensations like wind, rain and vibrations. The 4-D experience is perfect for the film The Polar Express, when a doubting young boy takes a train ride to the North Pole.
Now - Jan. 1, 2017 (Sunday) - Admission times will vary; closed Dec. 24 and 25 - South Carolina State Museum, Columbia
Train Rides with Santa
Visit the South Carolina Railroad Museum to take a ride on the Rockton Rion & Western train, where Santa is a passenger! Daytime and Twilight rides with hot chocolate and cookies are available.
Dec. 10 and Dec. 17 (Saturday) - Ride times and ticket prices vary - South Carolina Railroad Museum, Columbia