Editor’s Note: Information has been updated to accurately reflect 2016 events.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. All over the Rocket City, lights and trees and stars and Santas deck the halls, streets, parks, museums and more. Even if you live here, it’d be tough to take in everything, and if you’re only in Huntsville for a visit, there’s way too much to possibly see it all. So here is your guide to your personal top choice for the one Huntsville Christmas thing you simply must do, whenever during the holiday season you’re here and for whatever type of activity you’re looking for.
Cost: Tickets $5 per person
(children under one year old, free)
Hours: November 25 – December 23, 5 – 9 p.m.
GPS Address: 109 Gates Ave. Huntsville, AL 35801
Phone: (256) 564-8100
Website: Click here
Kids can write letters to Santa, decorate gingerbread cookies, watch a blacksmith, play in fake snow, and more before having their picture made with the Man in Red himself. You won’t find more Christmas per square foot anywhere, or at a better price than $5 per person. Get there early to beat the lines, and take advantage of the Alabama Constitution Village gift shop for some unique Southern-style Christmas shopping, including handmade gifts. Insider Tip: Even light drizzles will sometimes discourage crowds because you have to walk outdoors between buildings, but the activities are all inside, making it a great time to enjoy short lines.
The Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau has joined together with its partners throughout the community to put together 7 special discounts to holiday events and activities, including Santa’s Village. See the coupon by clicking here or pick it up in person at the Huntsville/Madison County Visitor Center located at 500 Church Street in Downtown Huntsville.
Galaxy of Lights – Driving Nights
Cost: Passenger Car – $25 per car up to 10 people with $3.00 each additional person.
At the gate discounts are $5.00 off military discount with ID.
Online ticket purchase here.
Vans – $25 for 10 people and $3 for each additional person except when discounts apply
Tour buses – $25 for 10 people and $3 for each additional person (tour bus driver is free) except when discounts apply
Please note: Admission fees may be changed without notice. Please have cash or a check for admission!
Hours: 5:30 – 9:00 p.m., Thanksgiving – December 31, 2016
GPS Address: 4747 Bob Wallace Avenue, Huntsville, AL 35805. From there, the entrance is off of Bob Wallace near I565 on Phantom Rd. Just look for the BIG “Enter Here” signs.
Website: Click here
If you’re one of those Scrooges who thinks the worst thing about the holidays is that it always falls every year during the coldest months of the year, Galaxy of Lights – Driving Nights is one of the best way to enjoy an outdoor Christmas inside. Galaxy of Lights is an incredible collection of holiday light displays at the Huntsville Botanical Garden that you can enjoy seated… and heated in the comfort of your own car.
Tinsel Trail & Skating in the Park
Skating in the Park:
$10 Ages nine and up
$5 Ages eight and under
$8 Groups of 10 or more
$3 Skate rental
$5 Scooter rental
Tinsel Trail: Free
Skating in the Park: November 18 –January 3
Monday –Thursday 4p.m. – 10 p.m.
Friday – 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Saturday – 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.
Sunday 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m
Tinsel Trail: November 25, 2016 and last’s through TBD. The Tinsel Trail is open to the public daily until midnight. Trees are lit from dusk until midnight each night.
Skating in the Park: Behind the Huntsville Museum of Art – Downtown Huntsville, AL
Tinsel Trail: The Trail extends throughout Big Spring International Park in Downtown Huntsville. Metered street parking is available along Williams Avenue and Church Street. Parking garages are located at: Summit/PNC building (Church St.), Von Braun Center (Monroe St).
Skating in the Park: 256-529-7995
Tinsel Trail: No phone number but here’s a handy “Contact” form. Here’s the link!
My wife and I went to Big Spring Park on our first date, and now we’re married. And there weren’t even any Christmas trees when we went. Stroll through a free display of live trees downtown, decorated in a variety of themes. And, then, when you’re done there, head over to the Museum of Art. Remember that scene in “Rocky” where Rocky and Adrian go ice-skating outdoors? You can relive that yourself with Huntsville’s own outdoor ice-skating rink. And, you gotta admit, of all the things that happened in Rocky movies, that’s definitely one of the most romantic.
The Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau has joined together with its partners throughout the community to put together 7 special discounts to holiday events and activities, including Skating in the Park. See the coupon by clicking here or pick it up in person at the Huntsville/Madison County Visitor Center located at 500 Church Street in Downtown Huntsville.
Burritt on the Mountain
$10.00 per adult;
$9.00 per senior (age 60+) and military personnel;
$8.00 per child (age 3 – 18)
NO ADMISSION CHARGED for toddlers (age 2 and under) or Burritt Museum Members.
Hours: Winter Hours (November – March):
Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Sunday: 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
GPS Address: 3101 Burritt Drive SE
Huntsville, AL 35801
Phone: (256) 536-2882
Website: Click here.
Check the Burritt on the Mountain calendar, and you’ll find that they do have some great Christmas events at the museum grounds, but, really, there’s something said for going anytime. The decorations stay up until December 23, and it’s a great place to enjoy a quiet, simple and beautiful holiday excursion. Leave the flashing lights and dancing characters to others, and enjoy a throwback to the days when Christmas didn’t start with Jingle Bells at Wal-Mart on the day after Halloween.
Special note: The Burritt holiday event to remember is Kris Kringle’s Candlelight Christmas.
The Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau has joined together with its partners throughout the community to put together 7 special discounts to holiday events and activities, including Kris Kringle’s Candlelight Christmas. See the coupon by clicking here or pick it up in person at the Huntsville/Madison County Visitor Center located at 500 Church Street in Downtown Huntsville.
Which iHeartHsv blogger wrote this?
David Hitt is a native of Huntsville who enjoys telling the stories of his hometown. He works in strategic communications for NASA’s Space Launch System, the rocket that will send astronauts to Mars and prove once again that nobody builds ‘em like the Rocket City. David tells Huntsville history stories at the Huntsville Ghost Walk, Constitution Village’s downtown trolley tour, and the Maple Hill Cemetery Stroll. He’s the author of two books on space history, “Homesteading Space” and “Bold They Rise” and is the director of the Comic Science Improv comedy troupe.