Top Things to Do in Minneapolis This Holiday Season

During the holidays, many Minneapolis venues and destinations come alive with special exhibits and events. This year things might look a different as we take precautions to keep our distance and stay safe, but there's still plenty to do in Minneapolis during the holidays!

Holidazzle, Photo by Dusty Hoskovec

Experience Minneapolis at it's most magical time. Here's a list of the best holiday activities Minneapolis has going on this winter.  

1. Celebrate with the biggest holiday event of the season virtually

Holidazzle, which is normally held at Loring Park and is a holiday market loaded with food, beverage and artisan vendors, will be going online this year. You can still shop for holiday trinkets and enjoy some holiday programming, including visits from Santa, DIY projects and gift ideas. Look for more online content and activities to be announced soon and to be available throughout the entire holiday season.  

2. Start stocking up on gifts 

We know you still have a long list of people to buy gifts for. Make your shopping experience much more enjoyable with markets that feature festive food and holiday themes. And although stores and markets will be limiting the amount of visitors at one time you can still shop local this holiday season and come away with unique gifts for everyone. We’ve put together a full list of holiday markets and pop-up shop in Minneapolis and well as an online holiday shopping guide for you to support small businesses and shop all season long.

3. Spend a night surrounded by lights

It gets darker a lot sooner this time of year so take advantage and see some of the most colorful and sparkling lights in the city at a safe distance and through the convenience of your car.

Over at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds ride through streets that feature over a million holiday lights, illuminated trees and art installations. The GLOW Holiday festival is putting a new holiday spin on the traditional Great Minnesota Get-Together, complete with a Stair Fair food court finale.

Another drive-thru experience can be found at the Valleyfair amusement park. Lights will be synchronized to holiday music while you drive by giant candy canes, snowmen and arched pathways. Check out the Christmas in Color Animated Light Show.

For more ideas see a complete list of all Minneapolis light shows.

4. Be entertained by a Holiday Show

Theater and musical performances are a perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. There will be a few in-person shows this year with limited tickets, otherwise stay cozy, gather the family into the living room and watch a virtual showing of your favorite holiday classics put on by Minneapolis theaters. Check out a list of the must-see shows of the season.

5. Wander into a Gingerbread Wonderland

During the holiday season the Norway House turns into a gingerbread oasis. Here you’ll see gingerbread versions of familiar buildings and landmarks from around the Twin Cities and beyond. Local bakers and community members donate their creations to help build this tasty spectacle. You can even bring in your own gingerbread handiwork to put on display, no experience required. A limited number of reserved tickets are on sale or see them virtually starting December 6th.

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