Holiday Displays and Tree Lightings in Southeast Michigan

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Pack up the family and head to these 2015 holiday events in Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties.

Holiday Displays and Tree Lightings in Southeast Michigan

The holiday season is here. Add a new tradition or carry on an old one with your family in November and December by heading out to one of these fun events sure to illuminate the spirit. Metro Parent has gathered a list of some of the most merry and bright tree and menorah lightings, along with lots of other joyful jollies here in southeast Michigan.

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The Big Holiday Reveal in Milford

Nov. 19, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Milford
  • Time: 6:30-8 p.m. Thursday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-684-9719

Local kids “unwrap” all the storefronts to reveal their holiday displays. Come downtown for the fun – and come back for the festive deals. Displays remain up through the holiday season.

Wayne County Lightfest

Nov. 19-Dec. 31, 2015 (closed Dec. 25)

  • Address: 7651 Merriman Road, Westland
  • Times: 7-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 6-10 p.m. Fridays-Sundays
  • Cost: $5/car
  • Phone: 734-261-1990

Four miles of twinkling lights are ready for you to drive through! The grand opening is Nov. 19 with music, refreshments and a fireworks display; then, visit until New Year’s Eve. Pictures with Santa and concessions (Nov. 20-Dec. 23) provide even more Christmas magic. Don’t forget to bring your letters to Santa; you can mail them outside of Santa’s Workshop.

Holiday Lighted Parade in Northville

Nov. 20, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Northville
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-349-7640

Kick off the holiday season with this classic holiday parade, then stick around for a community singalong, free refreshments, visits with Santa and lighting the tree.

Wyandotte Tree Lighting

Nov. 20, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Wyandotte, Biddle Avenue
  • Time: 6 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 734-324-4502

Music and merriment await you and your family as this city lights up its Christmas tree.

Detroit Christmas Tree Lighting at Campus Martius in Detroit

Nov. 20, 2015

  • Address: Campus Martius Park, 800 Woodward Ave., Detroit
  • Time: 5 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free; $6-$7/skating, $3/skate rental
  • Phone: 313-963-9393

Visit Campus Martius Park for Detroit’s 12th annual signature tree lighting event. This event kicks off the opening of the skating rink for the 2015-16 season.

Holiday Hoof, FestivALE and Tree Lighting in Ferndale

Nov. 21, 2015

  • Address: West Troy Street, downtown Ferndale
  • Cost: Free (Holiday Hoof is $48)
  • Time: Holiday Hoof: 10:30 a.m.-noon; FestivALE: noon-midnight Saturday
  • Phone: 248-546-1632

There’s a big tree lighting on Woodward Avenue – but that’s not all! Swing by the FestivALE at One Eyed Betty’s (noon-midnight) for family-friendly music, cold-weather comfort food, street performers and 30 pinball machines, all in a tented area (and, of course, beer for parents). There’s also the Holiday Hoof, featuring a 5k fun run/walk (10:30 a.m.) and awards (11:30 a.m.).

Festival of Trees in Dearborn

Nov. 22-29, 2015

  • Address: Ford Community & Performing Arts Center, 15801 Michigan Ave., Dearborn
  • Times: 2-7 p.m. Sunday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesday, closed Nov. 26, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday
  • Cost: $5/adults, $3/kids, free/under 2
  • Phone: 248-336-2331

Check out the enormous public display and sale of trees, wreaths, gingerbread houses, Christmas stockings, gifts and more.

The Big Bright Light Show, Rochester

Nov. 23, 2015-Jan. 3, 2016

  • Address: Downtown Rochester, Main Street from South Bridge to Romeo Road and Fourth Street from Walnut to Water streets
  • Time: 7 p.m. Nov. 23; then buildings illuminated 5 p.m.-midnight Nov. 24-Jan. 3
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-656-0060

Downtown Rochester is decked in 1 million-plus lights, brightening up buildings every evening. It all kicks off Nov. 23 with “Lagniappe” (Creole for “a little something extra”), which includes activities like strolling carolers, horse-drawn carriage rides, gifts from merchants, roasted almonds – and, of course, Santa.

Holiday Tree Lighting in Madison Heights

Nov. 23, 2015

  • Address: Civic Center Plaza, City Hall, 300 W. 13 Mile Road, Madison Heights
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. Monday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-588-1200

Mr. and Mrs. Claus arrive to power up the lovely lights – and the mayor personally hands Santa the key to the city. Hot chocolate and holiday cookies are served.

Birmingham Tree Lighting & Santa House

Nov. 25, 2015 (lighting)
Nov. 27-Dec. 24, 2015 (Santa House, Fridays-Sundays)

  • Address: Shain Park and Birmingham Principal Shopping District, Bates Street between Martin and Merrill streets
  • Time: 6 p.m. Wednesday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-530-1200

Visit Birmingham’s Shain Park Nov. 25 at 6 p.m. for a tree lighting spectacle. On weekends, kids also can visit the Santa House – all the way till Dec. 24. In addition, the family can take an old-fashioned carriage ride during the season.

Holiday Walk at Meadow Brook Hall in Rochester

Nov. 27-Dec. 23, 2015

  • Address: Meadow Brook Hall, 480 S. Adams Road, Rochester
  • Time: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. daily; call ahead for evening hours on select dates
  • Cost: $20/adults, $5/ages 17 and under, free/2 and under
  • Phone: 248-364-6200

Fireplaces ablaze, ornament twinkling trees and a live organ playing festive tunes are all part of the annual holiday magic. There are various Santa events, too, on Dec. 6, 12, and 13. Reserve your spot sooner than later!

Holly Dickens Festival

Nov. 27-29, Dec. 5-6 and 12-13, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Holly
  • Times: 7:30 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-431-1894

Holly Dickens Festival celebrates its 42nd year! The England from the days of yore comes to life Charles Dickens-style with horse-drawn carriage rides, caroling and old-fashioned games. The festival kicks off at 6 p.m. Friday with community Christmas carols at the Presbyterian Church and then a lighted parade and tree lighting starting at 7:30 p.m.

Kerrytown Market & Shops Tree Lighting in Ann Arbor

Nov. 29, 2015

  • Address: 407 N. Fifth Ave., Ann Arbor
  • Time: 5-6 p.m. Sunday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 734-662-5008

Kerrytown kicks off the season with annual flair in its courtyard, complete with Christmas carolers led by Pioneer High School choir members and candle luminaries – and Santa will be there to light the tree.

Saline Tree Lighting Ceremony

Dec. 1, 2015

  • Address: Key Bank, 100 W. Michigan Ave., Saline
  • Time: 7 p.m. Tuesday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 734-429-4494

This festive community event kicks off the holiday season with a tree lighting, music and refreshments.

Waterford Tree Lighting and Santa Celebration

Dec. 1, 2015

  • Address: Waterford Town Hall, 5200 Civic Center Drive, Waterford
  • Time: 6-8 p.m. Tuesday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-674-5441

Visit for crafts, a chance to visit Santa, a Christmas singalong, food concessions and more at this 29th annual event.

Livonia City Tree Lighting & Caroling Ceremony

Dec. 1, 2015

  • Address: South side of Livonia City Hall, 33000 Civic Center Drive, Livonia
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 734-466-2200

Sing some holiday tunes with the Livonia Civic Chorus, visit Santa, make holiday crafts, watch a magic show and top it off with some hot chocolate and cookies (refreshments are at the nearby Civic Center Library).

Tree Lighting and Afterglow in Macomb Township

Dec. 1, 2015

  • Address: Macomb Township Recreation Center, 20699 Macomb St., Macomb Township
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. Tuesday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 586-992-2900

Head to Macomb Township for this annual holiday happening, complete with crafts, Santa, holiday dance performances and refreshments at multiple stations.

City of Troy Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

Dec. 2, 2015

  • Address: Veterans Plaza, City Hall, 500 W. Big Beaver Road, Troy
  • Time: 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-524-3392

Kids are invited to visit with Santa Claus after he lights up the city tree. Then, the Athens High School Choirs (Magic! and Concert Choir) lead the caroling. Enjoy hot cocoa and holiday sweets, too. Sponsored by Genisys Credit Union.

Tree Lighting Event in Canton

Dec. 2, 2015

  • Address: Summit on the Park, 46000 Summit Parkway, Canton
  • Time: 6-8:30 p.m. Wednesday
  • Cost: $3/resident child, $4/non-resident child
  • Phone: 734-394-5460

Kick off the holiday season at this annual township event including indoor and outdoor festivities, seasonal entertainment, refreshments and visits with Santa. The actual lighting occurs at 6:30 p.m.

Holiday Family Fun Freebie Cover for RCLP

Holidays are here! Find events, crafts and lots more in the FREE Holiday Family Fun in Southeast Michigan guide. Download it for FREE right now. BONUS: Get a FREE subscription to Metro Parent magazine for more tips and fun.

Christmas Aglow Tree Lighting in Shelby Township

Dec. 3, 2015

  • Address: Shelby Township Municipal Grounds, 52700 Van Dyke Ave., Shelby Township
  • Time: 7 p.m. Thursday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 586-731-0300

Join the community in singing Christmas carols plus enjoy a marshmallow roast, horse-drawn wagon rides and kids craft area. After he lights the tree, Santa meets kids over in Historic Hope Chapel.

Tree Lighting Ceremony in Royal Oak

Dec. 3, 2015

  • Address: City Hall, 211 S. Williams St., Royal Oak
  • Time: 6:15 p.m. Thursday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-246-3276

This community shebang kicks off with refreshments, caroling and the city’s children’s choir. Santa lights the tree and then sticks around to visit after the ceremony. Also includes the Holiday Magic Marketplace and goodies like cocoa, coffee and candy canes (event takes place at the Royal Oak Farmers Market).

Wixom Tree Lighting & Holiday Markt

Dec. 4, 2015

  • Address: Wixom Community Center, 49015 Pontiac Trail, Wixom
  • Time: 6:15-8 p.m. Friday (Holiday Market: 5-10 p.m. Friday, noon-10 p.m. Saturday)
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-624-2850

City Hall lights up for the holiday season – starting with a celebration featuring a visit from Santa and his reindeer. Bring the whole family to this event, which includes refreshments. Also check out the annual Holiday “Markt,” featuring traditional crafts, art and holiday greens.

Light Up the Night in Novi

Dec. 4, 2015

  • Address: Novi Civic Center, 45175 W. 10 Mile Road, Novi
  • Time: 6-9 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-347-0400

Indoor and outdoor activities abound, including seasonal entertainment, kids’ activities, ice sculptures, marshmallow roasting, petting farm, a craft show and, of course, Santa and the tree lighting event.

Auburn Hills Tree Lighting

Dec. 4, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Auburn Hills
  • Time: 6-9 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-370-9400

Even Santa and Mrs. Claus will be on hand for this annual community tradition. Write a letter to Santa and bring it to mail to the North Pole. Or swing by for horse-drawn carriage rides and hot cocoa.

Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony in Wayne

Dec. 4, 2015

  • Address: Wayne Historical Museum, 1 Towne Square St., Wayne
  • Time: 6 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 734-722-2001

Come see the tree lighting and take pictures with Santa. Enjoy cookies and hot cocoa, a petting farm and holiday music from the Wayne Memorial High School choir.

Heritage Holidays at Wolcott Mill Historic Center in Ray Township

Dec. 4-5, 11-12 and 18-19, 2015

  • Address: Wolcott Mill Historic Center, 65775 Wolcott Road, Ray Township
  • Times: 6-9 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays
  • Cost: $5/person; $7/vehicle entry fee
  • Phone: 586-752-5932

Make old-fashioned crafts, check out historic displays from the 1840s to 1960s and take the kids for a visit with Santa that will wrap them in the holiday spirit. Bring a blanket and enjoy a horse drawn wagon ride, too (weather permitting).

Holiday Nights in Greenfield Village

Dec. 4-6, 11-13, 17-23 and 26-28, 2015

  • Address: Greenfield Village, 20900 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn
  • Times: 6:30-10 p.m.
  • Cost: $24/adults ages 13-plus, $18/kids ages 5-12, free/ages 4 and under (less for members)
  • Phone: 313-982-6001

Walk the candle-lit village streets to see live entertainment, shops decked out for the holidays and Santa with his sleigh and reindeer. Plus take a Model T ride, go ice skating and watch the marvelous fireworks display.

Tree Lighting Ceremony in Chesterfield Township

Dec. 4, 2015

  • Address: Township offices grounds, 47275 Sugarbush Road, Chesterfield Township
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 586-949-0400

Swing by to see Santa and his reindeer, enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride (donation required per ride) and take part in a free arts and crafts project at the Senior Center. Also enjoy free coffee, hot chocolate and snacks.

St. Clair Shores Tree Lighting

Dec. 4, 2015

  • Address: City Hall, 27600 Jefferson Circle Drive, St. Clair Shores
  • Time: 7 p.m. Friday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 586-445-5350

Kick off the holiday season with this annual event featuring Santa, refreshments and live entertainment.

Christmas Aglow in Clinton Township

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Clinton Township Civic Center grounds, 40700 Romeo Plank Road, Clinton Township
  • Time: 6-8 p.m. Saturday
  • Cost: Free; non-perishable food item donations appreciated
  • Phone: 586-286-9336

Watch the decorations fill the grounds with light, visit with Santa, take a horse-drawn trolley ride, view ice sculptures, enjoy light refreshments and more. Dress for weather; most happens outside.

Holiday Lights Parade in Berkley

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Gazebo at City Hall, 3338 Coolidge Highway, Berkley
  • Time: Parade: 5:30 p.m.; tree lighting to follow parade Saturday
  • Cost: Free/most activities
  • Phone: 248-658-3300

This lighting is part of the Hometown Holidays event. It’s a full Saturday of fun, with a petting zoo (2-5 p.m.) and free vintage trolley rides (1-5 p.m.). The Holiday Lights Parade starts at 5:30 p.m., with the tree lighting directly after the parade – along with evening horse-drawn carriage rides (ticket charge per person/family rate available) and Santa visits.

Gibraltar Christmas Parade, Tree Lighting & Kids Christmas Party

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Gibraltar Community Center, 29340 S. Gibraltar Road, Rockwood and city hall, 29450 Munro St., Rockwood
  • Time: 5:30 p.m. parade, followed by lighting and party Saturday
  • Cost: Free; some specific events may have a cost
  • Phone: 734-671-1466

The city hosts Santa, kids’ activities and more after the parade, which will run down Munro Street to Stoeflet Street to South Gibraltar Road and north to the Community Center.

Orion Christmas Lighted Parade, Lake Orion

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Lake Orion
  • Time: 6 p.m. Saturday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-693-9742

This community tradition features more than 75 entries each year including dance groups, marching bands and more. Santa will make a special appearance.

Trenton Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting Ceremony

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Trenton; lighting at the clock tower at West Road and West Jefferson Avenue
  • Time: 6 p.m. parade, 6:30 p.m./tree lighting at parade’s conclusion Saturday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 734-675-7300

Kick off the season downriver-style with this annual event. The streets are aglow with handheld candles – and the tree lighting tops off the fun. Don’t miss the afterglow and awards at Trenton City Hall.

Noel Night in Midtown Detroit

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Midtown Detroit featuring about 70 cultural institutions
  • Time: 5-10 p.m. Saturday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 313-420-6000

Detroit’s art museums, science institutions and other cultural centers collaborate for the 43rd annual, including 200-plus local theater, music and dance groups, horse-drawn carriage rides and entertaining crafts. A traditional community singalong led by the Salvation Army Band ends the night.

Light Up the Grand Holiday Parade in Farmington

Dec. 5, 2015

  • Address: Gov. Warner Mansion, 33805 Grand River Ave., Farmington and downtown area
  • Time: 6 p.m. Saturday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-919-6917

The lighted parade will march across Grand River Avenue through downtown Farmington.

Menorah in the D in Detroit

Dec. 6, 2015

  • Address: Campus Martius, 800 Woodward Ave., Detroit
  • Time: 3-8 p.m. Sunday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-788-4000

This fifth annual event kicks off with a family festival including a zip line, marshmallow roasting and more. The Menorah Lighting (5 p.m.) features the lighting of the candles on an impressive 26-foot-tall menorah, plus fire jugglers and acrobats. There’s also an after-party at the Cadillac Square Heated Tent.

Tree Lighting and Singalong in Dearborn

Dec. 7, 2015

  • Address: Ford Community & Performing Arts Center, 15801 Michigan Ave., Dearborn
  • Time: 6 p.m. Monday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 313-943-2285

Take part in a holiday singalong, visit Santa and watch the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree.

Chanukah Wonderland in West Bloomfield

Dec. 9-13, 2015

  • Address: Orchard Mall, northwest corner of Orchard and Maple roads, West Bloomfield
  • Time: 10 a.m.-noon and 3-5:30 p.m. Wednesday-Friday, noon-5:30 p.m. Sunday
  • Cost: $5/donation
  • Phone: 248-207-5513

Activities include an Olive Press Workshop, T-shirt decorating activity and much more.

Holiday Lights Parade and Tree Lighting in Clarkston

Dec. 12, 2015

  • Address: Downtown Clarkston
  • Time: 6 p.m. Saturday
  • Cost: Free
  • Phone: 248-625-8055

Check out the Holiday Lights Parade at 6 p.m.; then hoof it to Depot Park. Here, Santa will lead the community in a tree lighting ceremony. Kids can give him their wish lists and have some hot chocolate, too.

Family Holiday Fest & Mill Lighting

Dec. 12, 2015

  • Address: Nankin Mills Interpretive Center, 33175 Ann Arbor Trail, Westland
  • Time: 4-6 p.m. Saturday
  • Cost: Holiday fest: $6-$7/kids, $2-$3/adults (less for county residents), free/3 and under; free/Santa visit and tree lighting
  • Phone: 734-261-1990

Kids can enjoy activities and holiday games (fees apply), then join in a singalong and check out the annual tree lighting with a special visit from St. Nick.

This post was updated for 2015 by Jessica Schrader

Holiday Family Fun Freebie Cover for RCLP

Holidays are here! Find events, crafts and lots more in the FREE Holiday Family Fun in Southeast Michigan guide. Download it for FREE right now. BONUS: Get a FREE subscription to Metro Parent magazine for more tips and fun.


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