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Things to Do in Dallas

5 Family-Friendly Things To Do In Dallas This December

How to spend some quality time with the kiddos this holiday season.
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One of the great things about the holiday season is the fact that most of the best things to do around town are going to be catered to all ages. It’s a time to spend with your family, after all. For that reason, there will be some crossover between this guide to family-friendly things to do in Dallas this month and our big guide to 50 things to do for Christmas. To save you the trouble of wading through 50 things to find the most kid-appropriate events, we’re going to whittle that list down and add a few more things for the whole family to do this December.

1. Santa Sightings: Santa’s got a busy month ahead of him, with appearances scheduled at parades and festivals all over North Texas. A younger St. Nick even stars in his own opera: The world premiere production of the kid-friendly Becoming Santa Clauswhich follows the then 13-year-old prince of the North Pole as he learns about a particular birth in a manger in Bethlehem, is at the Winspear from Dec. 4-12.

If you don’t have a favorite Santa established, here are a few places where the big guy will be available for photo ops throughout the month:

  • Visit Mr. Claus at his ever-popular seasonal outpost at NorthPark to make gift requests or pose for a portrait. Santa does some storytelling of his own at 10:30 am on weekdays and noon on Sundays. A full schedule of his hours through Dec. 24 can be found here. Visit the Trains at NorthPark, stop by the Scrooge Puppet Theatre, or knock out some Christmas shopping while you’re there.
  • Santa will be holding court in his new village at the Galleria. His hours can be found right here, but if you’re awake and the mall is open, Claus should be at his post. Make some time for ice skating around the massive indoor Christmas tree.
  • Schedule a Saturday or Sunday visit to the Dallas Arboretum’s 12 Days of Christmas outdoor exhibit and find Santa paying a visit from noon to 4 pm.

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2. Along with the annual abundance of Nutcracker productions, many family-friendly productions crop up at year-end, including:

3. Enjoy all-you-can-eat pizza during a screening of Home Alone at Alamo Drafthouse on Dec. 5. Once your stomach’s been given some time to recover, come back on Dec. 8 for an ice cream party and Home Alone 2.

4. Highland Park has some of the best Christmas lights in town, and the prime way to appreciate them is from a horse-drawn carriage. Book a ride (fair warning: it can be a little pricey, ranging from $150 up) and take in the sights.

5. All of the lights: You can’t throw a rock without hitting a tree lighting celebration or Christmas display in North Texas. We’re particularly fond of Addison’s Vitruvian Lights and Prairie Lights in Grand Prairie. When it comes to parades and tree lightings, it will be hard to top Dec. 5 in downtown Dallas: The Children’s Health Parade rolls through that morning, followed by afternoon activities and a tree lighting at Klyde Warren Park. Reliant Lights Your Holidays closes it down with a fireworks show, festive displays, and live music in the Arts District.

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