Tis the season for elves, for lights, for screaming children gleefully dumping a stocking on the floor and giving parents the gift of Legos embedded in their feet.
Tis the season for getting outside and exploring the Louisiana Christmas traditions and holiday events that remind you to step outside and feel a reemerging sense of wonder.
We’re sharing a list of Baton Rouge holiday events to celebrate the coming holidays and ways to bring everyone together. Whether you’re looking forward to experiencing something for the family, like the Christmas Parade, or a comforting classic like the Nutcracker Ballet, this list will have something for everyone. Here are a few family-friendly events that can bring a feeling of warmth to you, your family, and even your co-workers as you share the holiday season.
Support small business events with the Baton Rouge Local Pop-Up Holiday Market
There’s that scene in Home Alone 2 where Kevin McCallister goes to Duncan’s Toy Chest in New York City and well, he doesn’t know it, but he’s supporting shopping small businesses. It’s frankly the best way to find the perfect unique gift for everyone on your list. A handcrafted moose ornament with pipe cleaner antlers for Aunt Louise? Check. A box of homemade chocolates that will make your sibling forget what the word “diet” means? Check that, too. Shopping local adds a layer of authenticity to the holiday season and you can do it all this month at the Electric Depot in Baton Rouge.
The Electric Depot is hosting the Local Pop-Up Holiday Market every Saturday in December until the last Saturday before Christmas, December 17th. In the heart of Mid-City, they are located at 1509 Government Street in Baton Rouge. Connect with creators and crafters from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and celebrate the local talent in Louisiana this holiday season
Zoolights event and spectacular display at the Baton Rouge Zoo
Nothing quite screams “Christmas” like walking your family through a tunnel of lights to see a Western Hognose Snake or a Malayan Tiger. But that’s exactly the festive opportunity occuring at the Baton Rouge Zoo for the Zoolights display presented by the Children’s Hospital of New Orleans through December 30th.
Walk the mile-long trail of festive lights and more than fifty illuminated animal sculptures with giant spectacular holiday- and animal-themed displays up to thirty feet tall. A safari-themed photo booth is set up for fun photos, and do some zoo-themed holiday shopping at the Safari Post gift shop. After your walk, try some of the Seasonal Specials at the Flamingo Cafe.
Zoolights will close on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day but enjoy the evening entertainment from 5:30 pm to 8 pm every other evening in December. The zoo will close at 9 pm. For admission, adults and teens will cost $5, seniors’ tickets are $4, and children between ages two and 12 are $3. Zoo members cost $3 per person. For 50% off admission, bring a non-perishable food item to donate to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank.
Christmas Parade, Tree Lighting, and Gift Shopping
Just because there won’t be four inches of snow on the ground doesn’t mean Louisiana’s holiday season won’t carry an atmospheric blend of twilight calm and festive joy.
The North Baton Rouge Christmas Parade will hold its inaugural night parade starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 17th. The parade is paired with the Delmont Village Winter Wonderland where the family can immerse themselves in the bright glow of night lights and Christmas magic. The parade route’s starting point will be at Evangeline St. at North Foster Boulevard and then head West towards Plank Road. After the parade, stick around for the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony.
Get there early to visit the Christmas Vendor Village and find the best trinkets and last-minute gifts. Also, the kids will love playing at Christmas Playland for a fun-filled day of activities. The Playland and the Vendor Village will be open from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m.
The charming tradition of the Nutcracker performance
The annual tradition of the holiday production The Nutcracker – A Tale from the Bayou will continue this year at the Baton Rouge River Center Theatre for Performing Arts. Be enchanted by the sets of Nels Anderson and the beautiful dancing of the Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre. The production will be joined by the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra for a fantastic live music addition.
Performances will run at 2 and 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 17th, and Sunday, December 18th. You can purchase tickets at Ticketmaster.com, the BRBT office at 225-766-8379, or the River Center Box Office.
Stargazing and A Very Merry Museum holiday event at the Planetarium in Baton Rouge
The Louisiana Art & Science Museum’s Irene W. Pennington Planetarium will host activities, holiday-themed shows, and pictures with Santa on December 17th for the fourth annual A Very Merry Museum event. The festive day will include ornament-making, science experiments, and a museum-wide scavenger hunt. The planetarium will also host “Stargazing under the dome” at 10 a.m. for those who wish to spend their morning with the stars.
A Very Merry Museum will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. All planetarium shows and activities, including photos with Santa from 1:30 – 4 p.m., are included in general admission. Visitors are encouraged to bring a non-perishable item for the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank and are welcome to stop by the LASM Museum Store for last-minute holiday gifts and stocking stuffers.
The Irene W. Pennington Planetarium will also offer the holiday-themed shows of “Let It Snow” and “The Star of Bethlehem”. “Let It Snow” features a wide variety of holiday classics, adorable animation, and festive scenery. At the same time, “The Star of Bethlehem” takes visitors back 2,000 years to investigate the scientific and astronomical explanation for the “Star” that guided the Wise Men.
Book Talk on Francophone Culture at the LSU Rural Life Museum
Not everyone wants to spend the holiday unwrapping physical presents. Some don’t even want to spend time in the present and might like to spend the Saturday before Christmas unwrapping the past.
If you want to learn more about French history and francophone culture in Louisiana, there will be an author event on a unique historical text about Louisiana’s history. This free author talk and book signing will be about a collection of fables, tales, songs, and poems from the 1680s to the 1900s.
Learn more about the diversity of our region and hear from the voices of Louisiana men and women, explorers, political leaders, Native Americans, Africans and African Americans, and Creoles. This volume also represents language varieties, with passages in Louisiana Creole.
Join authors Evelyne M. Bornier and Margaret M. Marshall on Saturday, December 17th, from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. for an educational experience at the LSU Rural Life Museum.
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The holiday season brings a great opportunity to reflect on the year we’ve had, and also an excellent time to think about improvements you can make for your business and buildings moving into the coming year. Enter the new year with a business that fosters a feeling of clean rejuvenation and do it with an elite-performance janitorial cleaning service.
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