Magic of Christmas Events

2019 Holiday Events Guide

Celebration in the Oaks
11/29 - 1/1
City Park
A month-long holiday show featuring millions of twinkling lights throughout the Botanical Garden and Amusement Park. Walk through the Botanical Garden, Storyland, a children's theme park, and Carousel Gardens,an amusement ride area aglow with holiday magic at every turn.  Nightly musical entertainment and a full service cafe featuring their famous hot-buttered rum.  Don't miss the "Who Dat Tree" and the 2-story tall Mr. Bingle! $10/person. Straight to the Gate admission AND an Unlimited Ride Band with a dedicated entrance through Storyland: $28/person.   

Zoo Lights
11/29 - 12/30
Audubon Zoo
Audubon Zoo Lights presented by Children’s Hospital will bring the holiday spirit to our community by creating an enchanting nighttime winter dreamland in the heart of Uptown New Orleans. Audubon members $10adv/$13gate, general admission $15adv/$18gate 

Miracle on Fulton Street
11/29 - 12/21
Fulton Street
Harrah’s invites you to enjoy the sights and sounds of the Holiday Season at Miracle on Fulton Street. Featuring daily, 11am-10pm, "snow", twinkling lights, a giant tree and a magical gingerbread display in the Harrah’s Hotel Lobby. Enjoy live music and special events thougout the season.

Christmas in the Park
12/6 - 12/30
Lafreniere Park, Metairie
LED lights with fantastic displays such as a lighted 60-foot Sea Serpent in the lagoon, a princess and her magical castle & the gingerbread man!  Both driving and walking displays. The park sparkles for the holidays with thousands of twinkling lights and displays.  $5.00 per vehicle (FREE on 12/25) entrance on West Napoleon Avenue access gate of the park. Lights come on at 5pm each night. Children's Carousel open nightly through 9:00 p.m. - $1.00 per child

Nola Christmasfest
12/20 - 12/31
Convention Center
A Christmas festival of fun for the whole family including the famous Indoor Ice Skating Rink, Carnival Rides, Kringle Carousel, Larger-than-Life Inflatables, Santa, Mrs. Claus, Rudolph and all their pals from the North Pole, A-maze-ing Life-Size Maze, Crafts for Kids, Special Events, dozens trees decorated by local organizations, lighting displays inside and on Convention Center Blvd. and much more. Tickets are $20-$25.

Reveillon Menus
Throughout the holiday season (varies by restaurant)
An old French holiday tradition that has become a citywide extravaganza of New Orleans’ finest cuisine. Four or five courses at a prix fixe dinner that allows you to sample Creole favorites and seasonal fare.

 

French Market Tree Lighting
11/22
Washington Artillery Park
Enjoy performances by the National Park Service Arrowhead Jazz Band and the Heritage School of Music and the Tree Lighting Ceremony immediately followed by a fireworks display. 

Canal Street Lighting
11/26, 5:30pm
Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel
Stroll along Canal Street and watch as they “flip the switch,” turning on more than 1 million twinkling lights. Keep a special eye out for Santa himself at the event.

Riverwalk Tree Lighting
11/26
Riverwalk New Orleans
Watch the official lighting of the 50-foot tree on the corner of Julia Street and Convention Center Boulevard. Live music from the Riverwalk Jazz Band, complimentary popcorn, kid-friendly beverage samples from Nola Christmas Fest, face painting and more. 

Gretna Tree Lighting
12/1
6th Street and Huey P Long
Downtown Gretna's official tree lighting includes the arrival of Santa himself. 

The Roosevelt's Lobby Lighting
12/3
The Roosevelt Hotel
Be a part of the magic as the block-long, gilded Waldorf Wonderland Lobby comes to life for the holiday season. Join locals and international guests as they continue our 80-year tradition at the annual lighting ceremony. The lobby display features 44 Birch trees, more than 22,000 twinkling lights, and scores of festively dressed Christmas trees.

Kenner Christmas Village
12/6 - 12/28
Kenner's City Park
The Annual Christmas Village will light up Kenner this holiday season. Happens each Wednesday, Friday and Satruday. Expect a festive holiday village with beautiful Christmas lights and animated scenery! Featuring ice skating, Santa's Workshop, Food & Shopping, Christmas Tree Lot, Performances and Biergarten!

Christmas Under the Stars
12/6-12/7 and 12/13-12/14
Griffith Park, Olde Town Slidell
This event features visits from Santa and Mrs. Claus, festive music, a life-size Christmas Village, Slidell’s Nativity, the Parade of Trees, plus more holiday surprises for kids of all ages. 6-9pm, admission is free.

Holiday of Lights
12/6 - 12/14
Tammany Trace
Light displays along with live entertainment, rides and even pictures with Santa all along the Tammany trace Kids Town Pavilion, near the Children's Museum. Free admission.

Luna Fete
12/12-12/15
Warehouse District
New Orleans free festival of light, art, and technology. The celebration features a new Gallier Hall projection-mapping presentation, digital sculptures, and art installations animated with technology to delight audiences of all ages.

Festival of the Bonfires
12/13 - 12/15
Lutcher Park
Christmas on the River...Cajun Style. Enjoy great food, live entertainment, crafts and carnival rides throughout the weekend.  Each night will be highlighted with a single bonfire lighting!  Experience a prelude to the famous Christmas Eve Bonfires: A tradition unique to St. James Parish and all the world.

Ponchatoula Christmas Parade
12/14
Downtown Ponchatoula
Santa Claus will arrive on his sleigh along with floats, marching bands, dance groups and more will be included in the annual christams parade. The parade will leave Memorial Park and travel down 6th street to Pine Street, make a left hand turn on Pine street and travel to 3rd street turning right and ending at Ponchatoula Jr. High. Begins at 5pm.

 

A Merry Canteen Christmas
12/1 - 12/23 
Stage Door Canteen at the WWII Museum
The Victory Belles are back this Christmas season with all your favorite holiday tunes! When a WWII veteran gifts a trunk full of wartime memorabilia, the Victory Belles unwrap so many memories and reminisce the best way they know how—singing in beautiful three-part harmony!

Cathedral Christmas Concert Series
12/2 - 12/19
St. Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square
Enjoy the sounds of the season at St. Louis Cathedral. Concerts feature a variety of New Orleans artists performing beloved holiday classics and New Orleans favorites in one of the country’s most beautiful and historic churches. Begins at 6pm and lasts about an hour. Free, but donations are welcome

LPO's Yuletide Celebration
12/5, Jefferson | 12/6, Hammond | 12/8, Slidell
The LPO’s annual holiday celebration returns with performances in Kenner, Hammond, and Slidell featuring yuletide favorites perfect for the entire family! Bring your holiday spirit and caroling voice. 

Marine Forces Reserve Band Free Concert
12/6
Mahalia Jackson Theater
The holiday performance is open to the public; however, the donation of a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots is appreciated. While admission is free, all seating is reserved and requires an event ticket, which will be available at the Mahalia Jackson Theatre box office or by calling (504) 287-0351 beginning at 10am 12/5 through the show.

Holiday Movie on the Mississippi
12/6, The Grinch (2018) |  12/13, Muppet's Christmas Carol 12/20, Elf
Spanish Plaza
The Downtown Development District and the Riverwalk Marketplace present a special free outdoor showings. Enjoy hot chocolate, tasty treats and the beautiful Mississippi River with your family, friends, and neighbors in this truly unique setting. Admission is free.

Running of the Santas
12/7
Warehouse District
Participants dressed in Santa Claus costumes fill the streets and local establishments – with Mrs. Clauses and the occasional Elf. “Running of the Santas” in a pub-crawl style event. Activities start at Manning's and Apres Lounge and eventually makes it's way to Generations Hall for a post-party and concert. $20

Candyland Christmas featuring Vince Vance
12/7-12/8 and 12/14-12/15
Deanie's Seafood in the French Quarter
Family Fun at Deanie's with Breakfast with Santa and Vince Vance. Tickets $50.

Disney Jr Holiday Party
12/10
Mahalia Jackson Theater
Sing and dance along to their favorite Disney Junior songs plus holiday classics with their favorite Disney friends.

610 Stompers Holiday Spectacular
12/14
Mahalia Jackson Theater 
The 610 Stompers combine with the Louisiana Philharmonic for a new holiday tradition that is uniquely New Orleans. Tickets $10-$140

PRCNO Holiday Home Tour
12/14-12/15
Starts at 1329 Jackson Ave, Trinity Episcopal Church
Tour 7 historic homes in the Garden District. Enjoy history and architecture, accompanied by the tunes of talented New Orleans musicians. Visit the tour headquarters for regional cuisine and holiday shopping.  

Lauren Daigle Christmas Tour
12/13, 12/14, 12/15
Saenger Theater
Performances of some of Lauren’s jazz-flavored seasonal favorites from her best-selling Christmas album, Behold: A Christmas Collection.

Harry Shearer & Judith Owen's Christmas Without Tears
12/17 - 12/18
Le Petit Theater
An evening full of music, laughter and special guests with musician Judith Owen and her husband, actor and humorist Harry Shearer (The Simpsons, Spinal Tap). They'll once again spread their special brand of yuletide cheer for the 10th anniversary of the Christmas Without Tears Tour, subtitled "Does this Tree Make Me Look Fat?" It's truly unique and fun.

A Christmas Story: The Musical
12/17 - 12/22 
Saenger Theater
Brings the classic 1983 movie to hilarious life on stage. The New York Times wrote about the show, “I was dazzled. You’d have to have a Grinch-sized heart not to feel a smile spreading across your face.”

Trans-Siberian Orchestra
12/18
Smoothie King Center
Our Magic of Christmas concert with TSO is a multi-sensory extravaganza, which sells out venues year after year, has cemented the group’s status as a must-attend, multi-generational, holiday tradition.
 

Santa's Arrival at Lakeside
11/23
Lakeside Shopping Center
Holiday activities include crafts for children, Letters to Santa and Mrs. Claus Meet & Greet. Santa’s Arrival Parade begins promptly at 9:45am from Veterans Skylight to Center Court. Santa Photos will begin at 10am.

The Roosevelt's Teddy Bear Tea
12/1 - 12/24
The Roosevelt Hotel
At Teddy Bear Tea you will be taken on Santa’s journey to the rooftops of New Orleans.  Santa and Mrs. Claus will welcome you and your children while you enjoy a presentation of delicious holiday food, specialty teas, and tasty pastries, as well as sparkling wine and mimosas for Mom and Dad. Children will receive this year's commemorative Roosevelt Teddy Bear. Mrs. Claus will be reading her favorite Holiday Stories, and several Holiday Characters will parade through the ballroom and visit with the children.

Teddy Bear Tea
12/7, 12/14, 12/21 
Stage Door Canteen at the WWII Museum
Third annual Teddy Bear Tea! It’s the perfect holiday experience to share with children and grandchildren, featuring delicious food and sweet treats, lively music from the Victory Belles, a visit from Santa Claus, and a special teddy bear gift for all children in attendance.

Cooking with Mrs. Claus
12/15
New Orleans School of Cooking
Mrs Claus herself will tell stories demonstrate how to make one of Santa's favorites, pralines. Children will decorate cookies and enjoy chicken and waffle bites. Kids get to bring home their cookies and apron. There is even a surprise for the parents! Tickets $35.

 

Krewe of Jingle Parade
12/7
Downtown
New Orleans’ official holiday parade, the “Krewe of Jingle,” will once again delight locals and visitors alike with authentic parade floats, marching bands, stilt walkers, Christmas characters and many more magical surprises! Starts rolling at 1pm.

Howliday Market and Paw Parade
12/14
City Park's Great Lawn
Santa photos available for your dog, costume contest, pet parade and lots of fun stuff to check out and shop for. 

Jingle Bugs
12/14
Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium 
Celebrates the holidays with activities and treats for the entire family. Meet Santa, meet "Pupa Noel," sample holiday treats like Fruit Fly Cake, and lots more fun. Free with admission or membership.

Reindeer Run & Romp
12/14, registration 8am, race 9am
Begins & ends at The Outlet Collection at the Riverwalk - Spanish Plaza
Annual holiday fun run for kids on Canal Street! Rudolph, Santa and friends will jingle their bells to signal the start of the race. Participants will receive antlers, a race t-shirt and a bag of holiday goodies. After the race, “Romp” around the Riverwalk’s Spanish Plaza and enjoy healthy activities like yoga for kids & parents, pictures with Santa, music, games, crafts and more.

Lights on the Lake Holiday Celebration and Boat Parade

12/14
New Canal Lighthouse
The lighthouse is a great spot to view the holiday boat parade! Also featuring music, food trucks, hot toddies, kids crafts and educational activities, and pictures with Santa! New this year are an arts & crafts village featuring wonderful gifts from local vendors and a raffle with exciting prizes! Admission is $5. Kids under 12 are free.

Deck the Rails
12/14
Covington Trailhead
Free children-friendly holiday event and lighting of the Covington Trailhead. Craft activities, Santa Claus and an outdoor movie. 

Dashing Through the Dome
12/20
Mercedes-Benz Superdome
"Ramp Run Through the Dome", followed by post-race party. This unique 2-mile race runs participants into the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, up and around the Dome's Ground, Plaza and Terrace Levels, then down the ramps finishing on the field! This event is fun for competitive runners looking for a new challenge, kids & football fans alike.

Caroling in Jackson Square
12/22
Jackson Square
Join in a truly moving tradition as Jackson Square brims with thousands of candlelit faces and song-lit spirits as high as the spires of the St. Louis Cathedral.  Candles and song sheets provided. Gates open at 6:30 pm and Caroling begins promptly at 7pm.  Free and open to the public.

 

New Orleans Ballet's The Nutcracker
12/14-12/15, 12/21-12/22
Orpheum Theater
New Orleans Ballet Theatre performs Tchaikovsky's timeless favorite.  The performance will include over 60 young local dancers. Lead rolls will be performed by the internationally acclaimed dancers of New Orleans Ballet Theatre. Tickets $25-75.

JPAS' The Nutcracker
12/21 - 12/22
Jefferson Performing Arts Center
An ALL NEW PRODUCTION of the classic ballet which has become a holiday favorite. 

Delta Festival Ballet's The Nutcracker
12/21 - 12/22
Mahalia Jackson Theater
Delta Festival Ballet's The Nutcracker with The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. 

Moscow Ballet's Great Russian Nutcracker
12/27
Saenger Theater
World-class artists, over 200 dazzling costumes, stunning sets, towering puppets and soaring birds, don’t miss your chance to ring in the holidays with this acclaimed Christmas extravaganza.

 

Zoo Year's Eve
12/31
Audubon Zoo
Audubon Zoo invites families and kids of all ages to celebrate the new year in style with music, games and prizes. Pick up a party hat and noise maker, grab a Pepsi drink for toasting, and countdown to Noon to ring in the New Year with "The Pop Princesses."

Big Night New Orleans
12/31
Hyatt Regency
Get ready for the biggest and Best New Years Celebration anywhere! Make your plans to ring in your new year with over 3,000 people. Different party rooms with different performers and all with open bars.

NOLA New Year's Eve
12/31
Riverfront
The organizers of the Sugar Bowl bring in national performers which is televised as part of Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve, there's the official countdown and fleur de lis drop at Jax Brewery and fireworks over the River at midnight.