What to Do This Weekend

By Elizabeth Smith

These 18 top holiday happenings are proof that this weekend is the most wonderful time of the year. See the Grinch, the Nutcracker and Scrooge in local musicals and ballets, make real snow angels and watch a Gingerbread Man vs. Buddy the Elf dance-off, and witness an epic kid-friendly concert with the Polyphonic Spree.

How The Grinch Stole Christmas! Dallas
Thursday–Sunday, Dec. 7–10, multiple showtimes
See Dr. Seuss’ most gleefully wicked character live on stage when the national touring cast of How The Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical makes a stop at the Winspear Opera House. Max the dog narrates as the furry green recluse steals and then returns Christmas to the town of Whoville.

The Nutcracker and Character Parties, Fort Worth
Friday–Sunday, Dec. 8–10, multiple showtimes
Share the experience of this magical holiday ballet with your littles when Texas Ballet Theater begins its Fort Worth performances at Bass Performance Hall this weekend. Before the Saturday matinee, meet in the lobby for the all-ages Kingdom of Sweets party (free with your tickets), or meet the Sugar Plum Fairy and more characters at an extra special tea before the Sunday matinee.

Gingerbread House Decorating, Frisco
Friday, Dec. 8, 6 and 7:30pm
Sunday, Dec. 10, 10:30am and 6pm
Young Chefs Academy’s Holiday Room is full of lights and music—and sweets, of course. Make your own gingerbread house and decorate it with piping bags and basket wraps, get access to the Candy Land station with many candies to choose from, sip a holiday drink and dip treats into the chocolate fountain.

North Texas Performing Arts’ Scrooge, Plano
Friday–Sunday, Dec. 8–10, multiple showtimes
See the famed curmudgeon from Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in this musical adaptation staged at the Willow Bend Center for the Arts, North Texas Performing Arts’ newly constructed headquarters inside The Shops at Willow Bend. Tickets from $15.

Cultures of Candlelight at Dallas Heritage Village
Saturday–Sunday, Dec. 9–10, 3–9pm
Celebrate Christmas circa the late 1800s at the village’s 46th annual Candlelight festival. Snap a photo with Saint Nicholas at the Depot, then follow the candlelit paths to neighboring historic buildings dressed up for the holidays. A new play space called The Parlor has a reading nook, dress-up clothes and more historical toys and activities.

Irving Arts Center Holiday Open House

Friday, Dec. 8, 5:30pm
Inspired by Santa Claus’ trip across the globe, Irving Arts Center’s 25th annual holiday art exhibition and open house celebrates Holidays Around the World. Meet Santa for a photo op, hop on train rides through the Sculpture Garden, and claim your seats for an all-ages holiday sing-along by Grammy Award-winning children’s musician Dan Zanes and a concert by the Lone Star Youth Orchestra.

Reindeer Romp, Denton
Friday, Dec. 8, 7:30pm
Bundle up for an evening run/walk (2.5 or 4.2 miles) starting at South Lakes Park and through the Forrestridge neighborhood where many houses are expected to be decked out in Christmas lights. The holiday fun zone will be open with a bounce house, face painting and crafts.

Frosty 5K and Merry Mile, Frisco

Saturday, Dec. 9, 8am
Join Frosty and Rudolph outside City Hall for this 12th annual holiday tradition. Wear your holiday costumes over your winter running gear or the long-sleeve event T-shirt from the registration packet for a shot at the costume contest titles. Strollers are welcome.

Plano Lions Christmas Parade
Saturday, Dec. 9, 9–11am
Come early to secure your spot along the route to see Santa, festive floats, firetrucks, Boy and Girl Scout troops, and every Plano high school marching band, drill team, cheer squad and JROTC. The holiday parade starts in the parking lot of the Plano ISD admin building and ends at Plano Senior High School.

Perot Museum’s Discovery Day, Dallas
Saturday, Dec. 9, 10am–4pm
Create your own alien, learn about craters, set off rockets and enjoy more family-focused experiments related to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science’s current exhibition, Journey to Space. Museum members get in free and get a sneak preview from 9–10am.

The Little Elf That Could, Fort Worth
Saturday, Dec. 9, 10:30am
Billy’s Globe House, the children’s theater of Stolen Shakespeare Guild, tells the story of the clumsy elf Little Jordan, who wants be the best toymaker at the North Pole. Bring the kids to the Fort Worth Community Arts Center for this interactive musical with ’90s grunge and pop parodies.

Snow Day at Six Flags, Arlington
Saturday, Dec. 9, 11:30am
Arrive at 11am before the park opens to get an event wristband and join Six Flags parks across the nation in the world’s largest snowball fight with plush snowballs, while supplies last, plus hot chocolate and games. To get 40% off park admission, bring donations of new, unworn, warm clothing for the American Red Cross.

Rockin’ in a Winter Wonderland, Fort Worth
Saturday, Dec. 9, 1–4pm
ACH Child and Family Services invites its foster families and the community to the first-ever family Christmas festival, featuring a concert by former The Voice contestant Luke Wade, plus a children’s train, cookies and hot cocoa, a petting zoo, ornament making, and Santa.

Winter Wonderland in The Foundry District, Fort Worth
Saturday, Dec. 9, 2–6pm
Snap photos with the Grinch and snack on holiday treats during this family-friendly party at Feathers Boutique in The Foundry District. Local artist Katie Murray will be constructing the Found-Tree, a community project made with found objects. Bring an item from home (something found, unique, or random) to be included in the collaborative sculpture.

Evening Lighted Parade, Flower Mound
Saturday, Dec. 9, 6–9pm
Hoist your kids on your shoulders to see Flower Mound’s 28th annual lighted Christmas parade down Spinks Road to Gerault Park, where the evening festivities continue with a tree lighting ceremony, pictures with Santa Claus, carriage rides and a petting zoo.

Gingerbread Jubilee, Irving
Saturday, Dec. 9, 6–9pm
Get your Christmas groove on to holiday music at Saddlehorn Park, located next door to Valley Ranch Library. Cheer on the Gingerbread Man and Buddy the Elf as they compete in a dance-off, join the kids in snow angel making at the snow play area, and visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

The Polyphonic Spree’s Holiday Extravaganza, Dallas
Saturday, Dec. 9, 7pm
This is no mere concert. The Dallas-based choral rock group’s 15th annual Holiday Extravaganza at the Majestic Theatre is an all-ages show with 400-plus pounds of confetti snow, two balloon drops, appearances by Critterman and character Gustafer Yellowgold, and a milk and cookie toast at midnight. Check out more entertainment in the lobby and let your littles up on stage during the Polyphonic Spree’s holiday set.

The Polar Express Hot Chocolate Party, Richardson

Sunday, Dec. 10, 1:10pm
Wear your pajamas to Alamo Drafthouse Richardson for a special screening of The Polar Express with all-you-can-drink hot chocolate, a bell from Santa’s sleigh, and a souvenir train ticket. Open to kids 3 and older.

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