Christmastime is here: A list of Wichita events to keep you busy through the holidays

It happens every Christmas.

You have all that decorating and shopping and cooking and partying to do, then Wichita has to go and throw a month-full of must-visit holiday events — lightings, gingerbread decorating, Santa visits, plays and Christmas concerts by well-known musicians.

To help you prioritize how to spend your precious holiday minutes, we’ve again composed a list of some of Wichita’s most-loved holiday events.

Here are some of the highlights. Also this year, WIchita will have five different Nutcracker companies performing the holiday classic.


Bradley Fair Christmas Tree Lighting, 5 p.m.-10 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 17, Bradley Fair, Rock Rd. at 21st St. Annual lighting of Christmas tree on Bradley Fair Plaza to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities Wichita. Christmas carol sing-a-long, photos with Santa and his reindeer photos, horse-drawn carriage rides. 6-10 pm. 316-630-9990

The Arc’s Lights, formerly Lights on St. Paul, drive-through light display with more than a million lights starting at Douglas and St. Paul, 5:30-9 p.m. Nov. 22-Dec. 28 (to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and Dec. 19, 20 and 23, and until 11:30 p.m. Christmas Eve); $10 per-carload admission required Fridays through Sundays, free-will donations accepted Mondays through Thursdays;, 316-943-1191.

Illuminations, light displays throughout the gardens of Botanica, music, nightly Santa appearances, hot drinks and snacks for sale. 5:30-8:30 p.m. Nov. 23-Dec. 31 (excluding Dec. 24-25), Botanica, 701 N. Amidon. $10, $7 members, $7 ages 3-12, under 3 get in free., 316-264-0448.

Lights on the River and Mayor’s Tree Lighting, 4 p.m.-7 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 2 Wichita Boathouse, 515 S. Wichita. A free family event on the Arkansas River with activities for everyone including the Lights on the River Launch. Purchase floating lights for the floating light launch, enjoy wagon rides, visit with Santa, buy food from local food trucks, watch fireworks, and more. Orbs can be purchased ahead of time or the night of the event. At 6 p.m., Mayor Jeff Longwell will light the official city tree in Old Town Square. Trolleys will be available to take people back and forth from the Boathouse to Old Town Square. 316-262-2038


Holidays in Delano, 11-4 p.m. Nov. 17, Historic Delano District. Christmas shopping at Delano businesses, Santa appearances, live reindeer, carolers, Santa and kids’ activities. Bring canned goods to receive a discount at area shops.

Polar Express at OJ Watson Park, family activity geared to children 2 and up, reading of “Polar Express,” crafts, miniature train ride to North Pole to see Santa and have s’mores and hot chocolate. $16. 37 sessions between Nov. 23 and Dec. 23. Register online at or by calling the park at 316-529-9940.

A Night With Santa, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Dec. 6, Century II Exhibition & Convention Halls, 225 W. Douglas. Visit with Santa, carnival games and prizes, cake walk, bingo, drawings for Christmas trees, bicycles and more. Sponsored by Wichita Park & Recreation. Free.

Victorian Christmas, 6-9 p.m. Dec. 7-8, Dec. 14-15, Old Cowtown Museum, 1865 W. Museum Blvd. Traditional holiday event featuring period decorations, wagon rides, carolers, crafts and activities, cookies, cocoa, and Christmas gifts for sale. Tickets $9 for adults 18-61, $8 for seniors 62 and older, $7 for youth 12-17, $6 for children 5-11, free for those 4 and under and Cowtown members.


Home for Christmas featuring Chris Mann, 7 p.m. Dec. 1, Century II, 225 W. Douglas. Sponsored by Wichita Grand Opera. Tickets: $81-$90. at 316-262-8054

Jewel’s Handmade Holiday Tour, 7 p.m. Mon., Nov. 26, Wichita Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. Jewel performs holiday classics as well as her hits. $45.50-$126.50., 316-263-0884

Lindsey Stirling’s The Wanderland Tour, 8 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 29, Intrust Bank Arena, 500 E. Waterman. Popular violinist brings her holiday tour to Wichita. $35-$75., 855-755-7328.

Jim Brickman: A Joyful Christmas, 8 p.m. Sat., Dec. 8, Wichita Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. Grammy-nominated pianist performs holiday classics. $47-$65., 316-263-0884

Christmas with Earnest Alexander 6:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 26 Crown Uptown Theatre, 3207 E. Douglas. $50. Join Earnest Alexander and pianist, Craig Curry, along with other special guests. All proceeds go directly to the work of Youth Horizons, serving at-risk youth in Wichita. 316-612-7696,

WSU Symphony Orchestra Holiday Pops Concert 7:30-9:30 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 27 Wichita State University Miller Concert Hall, 1845 Fairmount. Tickets: $12, with discounts available. A surprise guest narrator will join the Wichita Symphony Orchestra to read the timeless classic “The Night Before Christmas”. The symphony will be joined by the A Cappella Choir and Concert Chorale. 316-978-3233

Wednesdays in Wiedemann Annual Christmas Concert 5:15-5:45 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 28, Wichita State University’s Wiedemann Hall, 1845 Fairmount St. Free. Favorite Christmas songs performed on the Macussen organ in Wiedemann Hall.

WSU’s Choirs present the 56th Annual Candlelight Concert 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m., Nov. 30.- Dec. 1 and 4 p.m. Dec. 2 Wichita State University Wiedemann Hall, 1845 Fairmount St. $12 with discounts available.

Christmas Candlelight at Friends University 7:30 p.m. Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 and 2 p.m. Dec. 2, Friends University Riney Fine Arts Center’s Sebits Auditorium, 2100 W. University Ave. Tickets: $16 for Adults, $13 students and seniors age 60 and older. 316-295-5677

Denver and the Mile High Orchestra 7:30-9 p.m., Friday, Nov. 30 Tabor College — Shari Flaming Center for the Arts, 400 S Jefferson St., Hillsoboro. A Big Band Christmas full of nostalgic holiday classics, inspirational original music. 620-947-3121

A Wichita Tradition: Handel’s Messiah 2 p.m.-4:30 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 25, Country Acres Baptist Church, 8810 W. 10th St. Tickets: $10. The Wichita Choral Society accompanied by members of the Wichita Symphony Orchestra. 316-258-2518.

Newman University Christmas Choral Concert 3 p.m. Sun., Dec. 2, Newman University - De Mattias Hall, 3100 W. McCormick. Newman University’s Chorale and Troubadours present their Christmas program. $10 adults, $5 students college-age and below.

Heart of America Men’s Chorus Christmas and All That Jazz 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 8 and 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9, Newman University De Mattias Fine Arts Center, 3100 McCormick. Tickets: $15 for adults, $5 for students. Special onstage seating with dessert for $20. 316-942-4291

Delano Wind Ensemble Christmas Concert 3 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 9 West Side Baptist Church, 304 S. Seneca. Free, donations accepted. Annual Delano Wind Ensemble Christmas Concert, Sing-A-Long, and “Night Before Christmas” with narration by Sierra Scott 316-262-7244

Celtic Angels Christmas 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 13, McPherson Opera House, 219 S. Main St., McPherson. Tickets: $25-$38. Student tickets are $15. Featuring vocal and instrumental seasonal and Irish favorites along with spectacular Irish dancing. 620-241-1952

Wichita Community Children’s Choir: Winter Prelude Concert 7-8:30 p.m., Dec. 14, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, 645 N. 119th St. West. Donation of $10 for adults, $5 high school and children. The Choristers and the Chorale perform with guest instrumentalists and the Eastminster Bell Choir. 316-721-1686

Wichita Chamber Chorale presents Sounding Joy - Make We Merry 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, First United Methodist Church, 330 N. Broadway. Second performace will be at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16 at Plymouth Congregational Church, 202 N Clifton. Tickets: $20 general; $15 senior; $5 college student; K-12 free admission. Guest conductor Dr Michael Pohlenz will lead the 40-voice ensemble. Tickets available at; Senseney Music, 2300 E Lincoln St; by phone at 316-768-7476; or at the door.

A SmorgasChorus Christmas 7 p.m. Sat., Dec. 15, Wichita Collegiate School - Galicia Auditorium, 1221 N. Webb. International-qualifying barbershop chorus performs holiday tunes alongside chapter quartets. $10 adults (18+), $5 youth.

Christmas at the Crown, 7 p.m. Sat., Dec. 15, Crown Uptown Theatre, 3207 E. Douglas. Concert by Amos Brewer and Joseph George III. $25 in advance, $30 day of.

Salina Symphony Presents Christmas Festival 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 15; 4 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 16, Stiefel Theatre, 151 S. Santa Fe, Salina Tickets: $29-$39. 785-827-1998 Tickets available at

Cool Yule 6 p.m. Sun., Dec. 16, McPherson Opera House, 219 S. Main, McPherson. Big-band swing holiday tunes by Sammie King’s InsideOut Jazz Band, and vocals by Michele King. $20., 620-241-1952

Home Free: A Country Christmas 8 p.m. Wed., Dec. 19, Wichita Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. YouTube sensation Home Free. $19.50-$249.50., 316-263-0884

Family events

Winter Art Mania 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Nov. 23 and Nov. 24. Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd. Free admission Friday and Saturday. Films, artmaking activities, PopUpTours, Sponsored by: Crossfirst Bank, AGH CPAs and Advisors, and Simpson Construction Services. 316-268-4921

Breakfast with Santa 9-11 a.m. Dec. 8 and Dec. 15, Old Cowtown Museum Visitor’s Center, 1865 W. Museum Blvd. Breakfast, Christmas crafts, live holiday music, free photos with Santa. Tickets $14 for adults 16 and over, $12 for children ages 4-15. For members, it’s $12 for adults, $10 for children. Call 316-350-3323.

Christmas Family Fun Day 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 8 Pilgrim Congregational United Church of Christ, 6000 E. Harry St. Free. Create Christmas cards and ornaments and sew a small pillow.

3rd Annual Carriage Rides in the Park 5-8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 8, High Park, 2801 E. James, Derby. Free. Julie Olmsted Insurance Agency presents 3rd Annual Carriage Rides in the Park with local businesses supporting the events

I Love Snow Art Camp 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 19, CityArts, 334 N. Mead. $40. Youth ages 6-14. Cost: $40. Early drop off 7:30-9 a.m. and late pick up 4-5:30 p.m. available at no extra cost. 316-462-2787

Winter Art Mania 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Dec. 26 - Dec. 28. Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd. Free admission for three days of art exploration and activity and Art Mania. Watch a family flick, create a special project in our Living Room then head down to the Art Studio for a full studio art experience. Sponsored by: Celebrity Cruises, CrossFirst Bank, and IMA. 316-268-4921


“Will Santa Drink Canada Dry,” written by Tom Frye, through Dec. 30, Mosley Street Melodrama, 234 N. Mosley. To see available dates, visit or call 316-263-0222. Dinner 6:15 p.m., show 7:50 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; dinner 5:15 p.m., show 6:50 p.m. Sundays; Saturday matinees lunch 12:15 p.m., show 1:50 p.m. $30 for dinner and show

“The Kyle and Monte Christmas Musical 3,” comedy musical starring Monte Wheeler and Kyle Vespestad. Friday and Saturday Nov. 16-23. Check website for showtimes. Roxy’s Downtown, 412½ E. Douglas; $20-$30 for show, 316-265-4400,

Prairie Pines Mystery Theatre: “Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Missing Holly,” Nov. 16-17, 23-24, 29-30, Dec. 1-2, 5-9, 12-16, 19-23, 4055 N. Tyler Road. Doors open at 6:15 p.m. for cider and browsing in the Old Barn Christmas Shop, dinner served starting at 6:40 p.m. $35.95 plus tax., 316-303-2037.

A Charlie Brown Christmas Live on Stage, 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29, Wichita Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. Live stage rendition of the classic Charles Schulz cartoon. $28.50-$48.50., 316-263-0884

A Drag Queen Christmas 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, Wichita Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. Murray and Peter present drag-queen contestants

Elf - The Musical Nov. 16-Dec. 9, Salina Community Theatre, 303 E. Iron Ave. 785-827-3033

Ms. Holidazzle Musical Dinner Theater Event 6 p.m. Nov. 17, Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 for dinner and show. Tickets are $30. Show-only matinee at 3 p.m. Nov. 18. Performances at Bethany Lutheran Church and School, 1000 W. 26th St. South. Tickets at 316-773-9300.

Forum Theatre Wichita: The Winter Wonderettes Thursdays through Sundays Nov. 29-Dec. 16, Forum Theatre, 330 N Broadway. Tickets for Thursday, Nov. 29 preview are $18; $23 for Thursday and Sunday performances and $25 for Friday and Saturday shows. Dinner option is $20 per person. It’s Christmas 1968. When Santa is a no-show, the four Marvelous Wonderettes hop into action to save the Harper’s Hardware Holiday Party. Packed full of iconic ’60s versions of classic holiday hits. Rated: G. 316-618-0444

Wichita Children’s Theatre: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever Dec. 12-15, Mary Jane Teall Theatre at Century II, 225 W. Douglas Ave. Tickets: $8. Tickets to weekend shows available at, 316-303-8100, or the Wichita Tix box office at Century II. Recommended for ages 5 and older. Show times: 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Dec. 12-13, 1 and 6:30 p.m. Dec. 14 and 1 and 3 p.m. Dec. 15. 316-264-9121 . For tickets to weekday performances call the children’s theatre at at 262-2282

Wichita Children’s Theatre: The Runaway Snowman 10 a.m. and noon, Nov. 29 and 20; noon Dec. 1; 10 a.m. Dec. 15. Mary Jane Teall Theatre at Century II, 225 W. Douglas Ave. Tickets: $8, available at Wichita Tix at 303-8100. Pizza available at select shows for an additional $1.50. For tickets to weekday performances call the children’s theatre at 316-262-2282.

Finding Neverland 7:30 p.m., Dec. 18-20, Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center, 225 W. Douglas Ave. A Broadway in Wichita production. 316-264-9121

Annual traditions

4th Annual FEZtival of Trees 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 11, Midian Shrine Temple, 130 N. Topeka. $5 person. Whimsical Christmas trees and raffles. Free Pictures with Santa with paid admission, a Sweet Shoppe, Live Demonstrations, Marketplace, and an Old Fashioned Cast Iron Waffle Breakfast. 316-264-7551

Holiday Tables at MarkArts Wichita- Sugar & Spice Tea Noon-4 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 11. Mark Arts, 1307 N. Rock Rd. $10. For ages 8 and older. Designing Women host the 2018 annual Holiday Tables exhibit. 316-634-2787

Gingerbread Village, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Nov. 11, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd. Decorate a gingerbread house and explore Exploration Place. $10.50 ages 12-64, $9 seniors, $7 ages 3-11, $5 for Assistance League and Exploration Place members, ages 2 and under free, includes admission to Exploration Place., 316-660-0600.

Annual Wreath Festival 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Nov. 15-16, Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum, 204 S. Main St. Free admission to festival. Lunch $15. Features holiday decorations and gift items, baked items, and festive music with lunch served in the Historical Museum decked out for the holidays. Lunch from 11-1 p.m. All proceeds go to the support of the Museum. 316-265-9314,

Bradley Fair Carriage Rides Bradley Fair, Rock Rd. at 21st St. Beginning Nov. 18 free carriage rides will be offered 1-7 p.m. every Sunday afternoon until Christmas. 316-630-9990

Kansas in Miniature Holiday Show, Nov. 24-Dec. 31, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd. Popular exhibit decorated for the holidays. Included with museum admission: $10.50 ages 12-64, $9 seniors, $7 ages 3-11., 316-660-0620.

Holiday Dome Show: “Let it Snow,” Nov. 24-Dec. 31, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd. Family-friendly show with holiday images and scenes set to favorite Christmas songs. $5, $4 seniors, $3 ages 3-11, free ages 2 and under. Showtimes posted at, 316-660-0600.

Community events

Elf Interactive Screening 7 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 29, Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd. $25 general admission; $15 for WAM members . The screening room will be decorated in elf-inspired holiday regalia. Cash bar. Doors open at 6 p.m. Must be 21 to attend. Tickets available online at 316-268-4921

The Polar Express Literacy Event 5 p.m.-7:30 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 17, Holiday Inn Wichita East, 549 S. Rock Rd. Admission: $3 - $25. A winter carnival with your favorite breakfast items paired with a hot chocolate bar. Children become the auctioneers and dollars are raised for Head Start Scholarships. Be sure to bring a book to put under our Christmas tree for Head Start.

A Frontier Christmas 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 17, Douglass Public Library, 319 S. Forrest St. Douglass. Friends of the Library bake sale and basket raffle in conjunction with A Frontier Christmas. Vendors will be at the Library and around town. 316-746-2600

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation 7 p.m. Sat., Dec. 1, Wichita Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. Screening of the 1989 movie starring Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold. $8., 316-263-0884

Holiday Fun at the Castle 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 2, The Castle Inn Riverside, 1155 N. River Blvd., Christmas carolers, holiday vendors, warm spiced drinks and pampering services. $10,

Holiday Open House at Wichita Art Museum 2-4 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 2 Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd. Free admission. The Friends of the Wichita Art Museum invite you for holiday refreshments, live music, and a visit with Santa Claus. 316-268-4921

Senior Wednesday: Holiday Brunch 10-11 a.m., Wednesday, Dec. 5, Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd. Enjoy coffee, treats, and holiday music and hear about the exciting upcoming spring programs from all ten of the participating Senior Wednesday organizations. Drawings for door prizes and entertainment. For adults 55 and older. 316-268-4921

Holiday Market & Food Truck Rally 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Friday, Dec. 7, Catholic Care Center, 6650 E. 45th St. N. Enjoy holiday shopping with a wide variety of local vendors and artist, plus lunch with some of Wichita’s best food trucks.

Christmas Open House McCormick School Museum 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Fri. Dec. 7, 855 S. Martinson, Free. Music provided by Wichita school classes throughout the day.

Bringing in the Greens 6-8 p.m. Dec. 7, Great Plains Nature Center, 6232 E. 29th Street. Caroling, bell-ringing, decking the halls, cookie decorating. Free., 316-683-5499.

Red Stocking Breakfast 8-11 a.m. Dec. 8, LaVela, 6147 E. 13th Street. Traditional fundraising breakfast to benefit Kansas Children’s Service League. $15, $12 in advance, ages 10 and under free., 316-942-4261 x1321.

Old Fashioned Christmas Tour 6 p.m.-8 p.m., Friday, Dec. 14- Sunday, Dec. 16 Oxford Grand, 3051 N. Parkdale Circle. Donations appreciated. Drive through displays featuring 15 themed Christmas Cards, a live nativity, carolers. Be greeted at your window by Santa or Mrs. Claus and take home a gift program. 316-927-2007,

Infinity Art Glass Holiday Open House 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 15 Infinity Art Glass, 120 N. Main St., Benton. Design-your-own ornament, glassblowing demonstrations by Scott Hartley and studio tours. 316-778-2115,

A Christmas Story (1984) 7 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 20 Orpheum Theater, 200 N. Broadway St. $7 Why wait for the Christmas Day cable marathon when you can see it on the big screen? 316-263-0884


The Bethlehem Experience 6 p.m.-8:30 p.m., Dec. 7-8 and 14-15, Countryside Christian Church, 1919 S. Rock Rd. Canned food items or monetary gifts accepted to support the 184th family group at McConnell Air Force Base. Experience the true story of Christmas as, you will be able to walk through the city of Bethlehem and interact with characters and animals. Enjoy a live twenty minute indoor production highlighting the exciting events leading up to the birth of Jesus. Join us for a new celebration of Christmas with the Bethlehem Experience. 316-686-7206,

Christmas in the Garden 6-8:30 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 20, Calvary’s Rock Church, 2661 S. Meridian. Free. Experience the story of the birth of Jesus Christ as you walk through the Garden, surrounded by Christmas lights. UNITED student ministry will be selling hot cocoa and S’mores to raise money for Youth Advance. 316-943-1155

Wichita Nativity 6-8 p.m. Nov. 30-Dec. 1 and 7 p.m. Dec. 2, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in West Wichita, 7834 W. 29th Street North. A free three-day non-denomiational celebration of Christmas with musical performances and nativity displays, interactive children’s room.

Craft fairs

Holiday Cookie Extravaganza 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Saturday Dec. 1 and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2, St Mary’s Catholic Church of Derby and Rose Hill, 2306 E. Meadowlark, Derby. Follow signs to the Knights Hall. All sales benefit the Guadalupe Clinic.

Holiday-A-Fair Craft & Vendor Fair 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 8, Goddard Middle School, 2700 S.199th St. West. Admission is $1 for ages 18 and older. The Goddard Booster Club raises money for athletics and activities at Goddard Middle School and Goddard High School. Crafters, artisans, quilters, vendors, bakers and goodie makers. City of Goddard Activities Committee will be hosting Breakfast with Santa that morning. 316-794-4230

Wichita Flea Market, Dec. 15-16, Century II. Admission: $3 per day.

Pleasant Valley United Methodist Women Cookie Walk 10 a.m.-noon, Saturday, Dec. 8, Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church, 1600 W. 27th St. N. Cookies, peppernuts and candy for sale by the pound, crafts and a silent auction of quilts and fine art pieces. Enjoy the display of treasured nativities and their stories from church members.