Columbia Family Events | December

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December in Columbia is full of fun – from holiday events, storytimes, art activities, and more! Get out your calendars and make a note of all there is to do.

Don’t forget to check out our local guides – ultimate guide to holiday events, where to see Santa, holiday lights, parks & playgrounds, indoor play areas, birthday parties, kids eat free, and more!

*Please note – While we make every effort to crosscheck current links and event details on our guides, we always encourage you to do the same before making final plans. If details are missing or incorrect, please let us know so that we can correct them. 

Dec
1
Junior League of Columbia’s Holiday Market
Each year, thousands of shoppers head to the SC State Fairgrounds for the Junior League of Columbia’s annual Holiday Market. With over 170 unique merchants, attendees are sure to find
Dec
1
Free First Thursday at the CMA
Enjoy free admission courtesy of Dominion Energy and extended hours. Sip and scribble with the FAAAC at 5:00 p.m. Take a guided tour of featured exhibitions European Splendors: Highlights from the
Dec
1
Columbia Classical Ballet presents The Nutcracker
The Nutcracker Ballet is a worldwide Christmas favorite. Tickets range from $6 to $18.
Dec
1
Bilingual Storytime Cuentacuentos Bilingüe
Share stories, songs, and much more while building early literacy skills with fun for the whole family. We will have a craft time after!.This event is free and open to
Dec
1
Christmas Craft Fair
Join us at the Icehouse Amphitheater Pavilion for a Christmas Craft Fair featuring fresh produce, unique gifts, local vendors, food, and more!
Dec
1
Metro Mortgage 5th Annual Cookies with Santa
 Join the team at Metro Mortgage in Columbia, SC for their 5th Annual Cookies with Santa! Join the Metro team along with Santa and Mrs. Claus for fun, fellowship and
Dec
1
Holiday Planetarium Lighting
Kick off the holiday season with this special evening event at the State Museum! In addition to extended hours at the museum, guests can enjoy holiday shows, a holiday craft
Dec
1
Watch Freely: Movie Night/Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Join us for a special screening of Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas movie. Audience: Adults, Families, 9-12 years, Teens (12-18 years)
Dec
1
Fireflies Holiday Lights
The Columbia Fireflies today announced that Segra Park will now be home to a new Midlands holiday tradition, Fireflies Holiday Lights. This holiday season, Segra Park will be decked out
Dec
1
Christmas in Cayce Drive Through
Experience thousands of lights, music of local performers and a visit from Santa – all from the warmth of your car, December 1st from 6-8 pm at Cayce City Hall,
Dec
2
Fun Friday
Come join us at Empire for an hour of parent supervised play! For ages 5 and below. Children can enjoy our bounce house, foam pit, trampolines, and gymnastics equipment. $5
Dec
2
Carols Along the Riverwalk
Stroll along the Riverwalk with hot chocolate while listening to holiday music during this beloved caroling event. Parking is available at Brookland-Cayce High School and includes a free trolley ride
Dec
2
City of West Columbia’s 18th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting
Area elementary school “What Christmas Means to Me” essay contest winners will be recognized, and the winning essays or poems will be read. Student artwork contest winners are featured on
Dec
2
Carolighting Ceremony
Join the Town of Lexington as we sing Christmas carols, light the tree, & take pictures with Santa at Icehouse Amphitheater.
Dec
2
The Living Christmas Story
The Living Christmas Story is a drive-through “living” story of Jesus’ birth. Union United Methodist Church has been creating memories for families throughout the Irmo, Lexington, and Columbia areas since
Dec
2
Polar Express Movie Night
Join us at the Icehouse Amphitheater for the Polar Express (G).
Dec
3
Pictures With Santa
Come join us for Pictures with Santa craft and vendor event. Admission and parking are free!! Enjoy some hot cocoa and browse booths from local artists and vendors. The big
Dec
3
Breakfast With Santa
Come join us for our Annual Breakfast with Santa where kids will have a blast meeting Santa, taking pictures and so much more!
Dec
3
Santa Train
Ride the train with our favorite visitor from the North Pole. Enjoy the scenery as Santa walks the length of the train talking to families and posing for pictures. The
Dec
3
Snaps with Santa
Photos with Santa and Mrs. Klaus
Dec
3
Pictures with Santa and His Friends
Bring your own camera to take lots of pictures! There will be cookies and hot chocolate for the everyone to enjoy and a coloring station for the kids as they
Dec
3
Cooking with Santa!
What better time to grow a child’s love of cooking and baking than the most magical time of the year. Bring your child into the kitchen with Flavored Fork to
Dec
3
Family-Friendly Hope Kids Christmas!
Bring the whole family to our special Christmas Hope Kids! Everyone is welcome and no need to register. We can’t wait to celebrate with you!  
Dec
3
Hands on Art
Dress for a mess! 
Dec
3
Santa’s Swingin’ Christmas Party
A holiday variety show with live music and puppets! Santa’s Swingin’ Christmas Party is a unique creative collaboration with Cola Jazz Foundation. Join Tinkle and Winkle, two of Santa’s elves, as they
Dec
3
Pictures with Santa
Come out and get your FREE picture with the most authentic Santa around. There will also be some sweat treats to enjoy!!!  
Dec
3
Santa Saturday at the State Museum
Kids (3-12) Get 50% OFF General Admission on select Saturdays Until Christmas.* Santa will be at the museum to meet with guests and members! Get your wish lists ready and bring
Dec
3
Santa’s Workshop
Join us at Krafty Draft in Lexington for a Santa’s Workshop. We will have bounce houses, popcorn, cotton candy, a hot chocolate bar, ornament decorating, letters to Santa, a scavenger
Dec
3
Graham Cracker & Gingerbread House Building Class!
Bring your kiddos to build a graham cracker or gingerbread house
Dec
3
Snowball Festival Carnival & Movie
Join the Town of Lexington for this year’s Snowball Festival Carnival at the Icehouse Amphitheater featuring face painting, balloon artists, letters to Santa, rides + more! Make sure to stay
Dec
3
A Christmas Carol
Broadway heavy hitters Alan Menken and Lynn Ahrens breathe fantastic new life into the classic tale, A Christmas Carol. Performed by CCT’s Mainstage company, this performance is a spectacular adaptation
Dec
3
Christmas Traditions Open House
The sights, sounds, and tastes of Christmas abound at the Cayce Historical Museum’s Annual Christmas Traditions Holiday Open House, December 3rd from 6-9 pm at the Cayce Historical Museum, 1800
Dec
3
Carolina Lights
This year is the 4th annual drive-thru light show at the state fairgrounds. You can enter at Gate 6 on George Rogers Boulevard. Chocolate chip cookies and milk will be
Dec
3
Cayce Historical Museum Christmas Open House
Step back in time and enjoy the magic of Christmas at the Cayce Historical Museum Open House. Enjoy characters in period dress, reenactments, carolers, lots of Christmas goodies and of
Dec
4
Sundaes with Santa
Dress your children in their Sunday best for photos with Santa, enjoy games and crafts with your family, and top off the fun with an ice cream sundae bar! Tickets sold
Dec
4
First Sunday
General admission is only $1 for guests on the first Sunday of every month! PLUS enjoy 4-D movies and/or planetarium shows, for only $5 each!
Dec
4
Christmas Parade
It’s a Christmas tradition you won’t want to miss! Join the Town of Lexington and the Lexington Jaycees for the annual Christmas Parade down Main Street! Get in the Christmas
Dec
5
Storytime at SCMM: Voices of Pearl Harbor
Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day is 12/7. For this Storytime event, enjoy a reading of Voices of Pearl Harbor by Sherry Garland before learning a little more about the ‘day which
Dec
5
Monday Bites: Holiday Cookie Decorating with Embellished Dough LLC
We’re back in the Teaching Kitchen! Join us and Selena Dennis, owner of Embellished Dough LLC, as she teaches us how to create holiday themed cookies!  Each person will decorate
Dec
5
2022 Christmas Open House at the SC Governor’s Mansion
Governor Henry McMaster and First Lady Peggy McMaster invite South Carolinians and their families to join them for a Christmas Open House. There will be Christmas carols and light refreshments
Dec
6
Free Photos with Santa
Bring your own camera! FREE photos with Santa and Mrs. Klaus.
Dec
6
Cirque Dreams Holidaze
CIRQUE DREAMS HOLIDAZE dazzles with a brilliant and whimsical family holiday spectacular. This annual tradition wraps a Broadway-style production around an infusion of contemporary circus arts. As lights dim and
Dec
7
Gladys’ Gang Toddler Edition: Oh Babies!
This month we explore what we know about our littlest learners. Join us as we discuss what we know and want to know about babies before we play some peek-a-boo
Dec
8
Santa Claus is Coming to Town
The holidays are just around the corner, and Columbia City Ballet is getting into the spirit with their Educational Outreach fall performance of Santa Claus Is Coming To Town. We
Dec
9
Hands on Art: Gingerbread Books
Wear your pajamas and snuggle up for bedtime stories and songs.    
Dec
9
Hello, Baby!
Grow your baby’s vocabulary, listening and motor skills with stories and songs. Audience: Babies (0-18 months)
Dec
9
Wiggles Pop Up Class
A pop up class of our new kids program, ages 3 to 6   Ignite your kiddos inner athlete with age-appropriate movements designed to increase spatial awareness, create mind-body connection,
Dec
9
Story Time with Santa
Visit with Santa and Mrs Santa for a fun afternoon of stories, special gifts and goodies! Be sure and bring your letter to Santa to put in his special mailbox!
Dec
9
Pancakes and PJs with Santa
Your ticket price ($10 per child accompanied by an adult) covers pancakes, a craft for each child, and a visit with Santa. This is a fundraiser for our 2023 Youth
Dec
9
Christmas Ball | Daddy Daughter Dance
A special night for dads and their daughters to connect and celebrate the holidays! We’ll have heavy hors d’oeuvres for everyone during the night, and a lot of dancing along
Dec
10
Accessibility Morning – The Grinch
This program provides free access for families of children, teenagers, and young adults who would benefit from a sensory-friendly experience and quieter setting at the museum. Guests who are neurodiverse,
Dec
10
Family-Friendly Hope Kids Christmas!
Bring the whole family to our special Christmas Hope Kids! Everyone is welcome and no need to register. We can’t wait to celebrate with you!
Dec
10
Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic
Join your favorite Sesame Street friends for a magical adventure when Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic visits your neighborhood. Elmo and Abby Cadabby team up to learn how determination
Dec
10
Columbia City Ballet Nutcracker
Nutcracker, Columbia’s holiday family tradition, has the distinction of being Koger Center for the Arts’ first Nutcracker production and longest consecutively running annual arts event.
Dec
10
Frosty Fest 2022
St. Michael’s Annual Frosty Fest will be on Saturday, December 10 from 3-6 pm at 6408 Bridgewood Rd., Forest Acres. This is a free family event with bounce house, hot
Dec
10
NOMA Cookie Crawl
The Cookie Crawl is in conjunction with the Light Up NOMA district-wide event in the heart of the North Main District. Merchants will open their doors and offer samples of
Dec
10
Holiday Parade of Lights
This annual event is one of the most anticipated holiday parades in the Midlands! This beloved night-time parade is hosted by the Greater Cayce West Columbia Chamber of Commerce.
Dec
11
Blythewood Christmas Parade
Join us in the annual Christmas Parade presented by the Blythewood Chamber of Commerce. There will also be a Christkindl market taking place during the parade and an Open-House presented
Dec
13
Hands on Art: Paper Ornament Christmas Card
Join us in creating hand made holiday cards for your loved ones! Audience: Preschoolers (3-5)
Dec
13
Santa is coming to Kid’s Night!
Ho Ho Ho! Santa’s coming to town! Kid’s Night is Tuesday, December 13, 5-7pm on Clemson Rd in Columbia. Kids get to hand-deliver their Christmas lists to Santa and eat
Dec
13
Santa at CAE
The jolly ole’ guy is landing his sleigh on our runway and will be available for photos (𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙩𝙧𝙖𝙫𝙚𝙡𝙚𝙧𝙨 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙜𝙚𝙣𝙚𝙧𝙖𝙡 𝙥𝙪𝙗𝙡𝙞𝙘) in our main lobby from 5...
Dec
15
Santa Claus at Top Dawg Tavern
You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I’m telling you why…Santa Claus is coming, to town!  Yes, you read that right, Santa, the big guy himself,
Dec
16
Nova Ballet Theatre presents The Christmas Angel
In its 22nd year of production, The Christmas Angel, an original Ballet, will take you and your family on a magical journey. With intriguing characters, a compelling storyline, beautiful scenery,
Dec
16
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Join us for a special screening of How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
Dec
16
Family Movie Night Under the Stars
Join us on Friday, Dec. 16 at 6:30 pm for a FREE outdoor showing of Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch! We’ll have a 30 foot movie screen thanks to CNY Attractions
Dec
16
Kids Night Out
Come and join us at Empire for a Christmas themed Kids Night Out! For age 5 and up, $25 per child. $5 discount if you bring a friend or sibling.
Dec
17
Pancakes & PJs with Santa
Come have breakfast in your pjs with Santa in out winter wonderland free pictures with Santa and take home a special Suprise. For reservations call 803-708-0476 – don’t miss out! 
Dec
17
Free Festive Bike Helmet Giveaway at the Law Office of Kenneth Berger
Receive a free bike helmet for your child at our festive Free Bike Helmet Giveaway on December 17! The Law Office of Kenneth E. Berger will be hosting a holiday
Dec
17
Kids Holiday Terrarium Workshop
Experience the modern plant revival at a PlantHouse workshop! Last year’s sell out workshop is BACK! Celebrate the season with our Kids Holiday Terrarium workshop. Our crew will provide terrarium
Dec
17
Jingle Jump
 Join us for some holiday cheer!  Flight will be hosting our second annual Jingle Jump on Saturday, December 17th from 10am-12pm! Join us for a fun-filled morning that includes access
Dec
17
Stroller Tour: Featured Exhibitions
Take a tour of featured exhibitions European Splendors and The Art of Elizabeth Catlett with infants in tow! Bring your little ones along for the ride on a stroller-friendly tour
Dec
17
Grandma’s Holiday Drop-In w/ Black Santa
Get the vaseline and cocoa butter ready to grease up the baby’s faces and join us for the second annual Grandma’s Holiday Drop-In w/ Black Santa Saturday, December 17th, 12-3pm.
Dec
17
Kids’ Book Club Tea Party
Bring your little lad or lady to enjoy a children’s tea party, a book reading, a fun craft & a copy of the book to keep for each child! No
Dec
18
Kids Holiday Terrarium Workshop
Experience the modern plant revival at a PlantHouse workshop! Last year’s sell out workshop is BACK! Celebrate the season with our Kids Holiday Terrarium workshop. Our crew will provide terrarium
Dec
18
Gateway Kids’ Christmas at the Chapel
Join us at the chapel for a night to relive and retell the Christmas story. Our kids will re-enact the story as a narrator reads the Christmas story while we
Dec
19
Bagels with Santa!
Enjoy a delicious bagel breakfast and while you’re there meet Santa and Mrs. Claus! Be sure and bring your letter to Santa to put in his special mailbox! Parents are
Dec
21
Gladys’ Gang Preschool Edition: Oh Babies!
This month we explore what we know about our littlest learners. Join us as we discuss what we know and want to know about babies before we play some peek-a-boo
Dec
21
Community Chanukah Celebration
Join us for a Community Chanukah Celebration! Glow in the dark golf, games, crafts, dinner, dreidel and more! Sponsored by the Katie & Irwin Kahn JCC, Beth Shalom Synagogue, Chabad
Dec
21
Winter Blast Kids Night Out
Don’t miss the Winter Blast Kids Night Out event at Bluff Road Park. Taking place on Dec 21st, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; this free event will be fantastic.
Dec
21
Mom & Me Cookie Decorating Presented by Embellished Dough
Join Us and Embellished Dough @embellisheddough as we have a Mom & Me Cookie Decorating Class!! Spots are limited you will have to register. Each registered attendee will receive a
Dec
24
Crafternoon
Get your craft on! Audience: Families, School age children (6-12 years)
Dec
31
New Year’s Eve 2023
Ring in 2023 in the best way possible: on the lanes with unlimited bowling, yummy food, festive party favors, and more!
Dec
31
Noon Year’s Eve
We’re still feeling ’22! Come spend your last day of the year at our “Noon Year’s Eve” event from 10:30 AM-12:30 PM! The $16 ticket includes 2 hours of jumping,
Dec
31
Dave & Buster’s Family New Year’s Eve
Join us for a New Year’s Celebration including mouthwatering food, thrilling arcade games, and fun for the whole family. Celebration Admission is required to attend our exclusive EARLY New Year’s Eve
Dec
31
Kids New Years Eve Ball Drop
2023 will be here in the blink of an eye, and if you and your family are still looking for the perfect New Years Eve plans, we’ve got them! Join

 

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