Holidays

2014 holiday calendar brimming with festive events

People walk under the lighted arches for Illuminations at Botanica Gardens.
People walk under the lighted arches for Illuminations at Botanica Gardens. The Wichita Eagle

It’s probably a good idea to savor these relatively uneventful days of early November. Because Santa arrives at the malls, and Gingerbread Village takes place ... next weekend.

The Wichita area will be brimming with holiday happenings from mid-November through the end of December. To give you a chance to plan, here are many of the events, concerts, stage performances and lighting displays scheduled in November and December. So get out your pencil and calendar and start scribbling in whatever gets the sugarplums dancing in your head.

Find more events listed at events.kansas.com now and as the season unfolds.

If your event isn’t listed here or is listed below, but you haven’t entered it at events.kansas.com, please do so that it makes it into online listings.

EVENTS

Santa’s Arrival at Towne West Square, parade inside the mall plus music and dance performances, Dillard’s south court near Journeys, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 15; free; 4600 W. Kellogg Drive. Photos with Santa taken for a fee; see www.simon.com/mall/towne-west-square for a list of his appearances through Dec. 24.

Santa’s Arrival at Towne East Square, parade at 1 p.m. Nov. 15, beginning at JC Penney court, 7700 E. Kellogg Drive; free (other activities including breakfast with Santa start at 11 a.m. for Simon Kidgits Club members; memberships available there for $5). Photos with Santa taken for a fee; see www.simon.com/mall/towne-east-square for a list of his appearances through Dec. 24.

Gingerbread Village, decorate a gingerbread house, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 15 and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 16, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd.; $9.50 ages 12 and up, $8 seniors, $6 ages 3 to 11, ages 2 and under free; includes admission to Exploration Place; www.exploration.org, 316-660-0600. A portion of the proceeds go to the Assistance League of Wichita.

Deck the Halls: Designer Decor for Your Holidays, fundraiser for Heart of America Men’s Chorus featuring food, beer and wine, silent auction of holiday decor including decorated trees and wreaths, displays of holiday decor, 7 to 10 p.m., Nov. 15, Innes Station Lobby, 701 E. First St. Tickets $30 at the door or by calling 316-708-4837.

Wreath Festival, exhibits of a Victorian Christmas and other holiday decorations, music, baked-goods sale, holiday gifts, lunch and wreaths for sale. 10 a.m to 2 p.m. Nov. 20 and 21, Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum, 204 S. Main. Free. Lunch served 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for $14. Reservations, 316-265-9314. Information, wichitahistory.org.

“A Christmas Carol,” musical by Maize and Maize South high schools, 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20 to 22, 3 p.m. Nov. 22, Maize High School auditorium, 11600 W. 45th St. North; $8 adults, $6 students; www.usd266.com.

Rolling Hills Holiday Open House, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 22, Rolling Hills Country Club, 223 S. Westlink, Christmas displays, holiday tables and artwork designed and presented by club members; $5 cash admission; lunch available at 11:30 a.m. for $15; reservations requested; 316-722-4273.

All Things Gingerbread, gazebo at Cambridge Market at 21st and Webb Road turned into life-size gingerbread house, photos with Santa and gingerbread boy ($7), big gingerbread cookies for sale for kids to take home and decorate, children’s aprons for sale, mailbox for letters to Santa (in partnership with city of Wichita; if return address is provided, a letter from Santa is sent); proceeds benefit Assistance League of Wichita; 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 22 and Dec. 6; free admission.

Bradley Fair Christmas Tree Lighting, lighting of 35-foot Christmas tree, 5:30 to 6 p.m. Nov. 22, plus Santa photos, and horse-drawn carriage rides afterward, Bradley Fair Plaza, 21st and Rock Road, free. Information, 316-630-9990.

Holiday Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides, originating at Bradley Fair Plaza, Fridays and Saturdays from 6 to 10 p.m. from Nov. 22 through Dec. 20. Free. Information, 316-630-9990.

Old Town Square carriage rides and holiday open house, stores having open houses from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 22; free carriage rides from noon to 4 p.m. each Saturday from Nov. 22 through Dec. 20 starting out in front of the Warren Theatre Old Town, 353 N. Mead.

Winter Art Mania, free admission to the Wichita Art Museum on the two days after Thanksgiving, with films, art-making activities, PopUpTours and more; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 28 and Nov. 29, Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd.; wichitaartmuseum.org.

Winter Luminary Walk, candles and electrical lights illuminating Dyck Arboretum of the Plains in Hesston, plus performers, crafts, stories and an outdoor Nativity featuring a variety of cultural perspectives; 5:30 to 8 p.m. Nov. 28 and 29, Dec. 5 and 6, 177 W. Hickory St., Hesston; $5 adults, $4 members, senior citizens and college students, $2 for ages 3 to 15; dyckarboretum.org.

Christmas on the Prairie, Christmas chuckwagon supper, Prairie Rose Rangers show, horse-drawn-wagon rides, classic cowboy movies and Silver Screen Cowboy Museum; 5 p.m. Nov. 28 and 29 and Fridays and Saturdays of December through Dec. 20, plus Sunday matinees at 1 p.m. Dec. 7 and Dec. 21; Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper, 15231 SW Parallel St., Benton; $35 for adults; $10 ages 3 to 12; younger children free. Information, 316-778-2121, www.prairierosechuckwagon.com.

Breakfast With Santa, photos and cinnamon rolls with Santa, and visit his nearby reindeer, 8 a.m., 9 a.m. or 10 a.m. Nov. 29, Brick Street Bake Shoppe, 507 State St., Augusta; $10; 316-775-4585.

Santa at Exploration Place, take your own photos with Santa, noon to 2 p.m. Nov. 29, Nov. 30, Dec. 6, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd.; free; www.exploration.org.

Live Science Show Fruitcake Smash, put fruitcake into liquid nitrogen and smash it up, 1:30 p.m. Nov. 29 to Dec. 28, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd.; included in admission or membership; www.exploration.org.

Holiday Dome Show: “Let it Snow,” family-friendly show with holiday images and scenes set to favorite Christmas songs from Frank Sinatra, the Muppets and more, Nov. 29-Dec. 28, Exploration Place Boeing Dome Theater and Planetarium, 300 N. McLean Blvd., $5, $4 seniors, $3 ages 3-11, free ages 2 and under. Show times posted at www.exploration.org.

“Amahl and the Night Visitors,” production by Opera Kansas, 3 p.m. Nov. 30, Mary Jane Teall Theater at Century II, 225 W. Douglas, $25 adults, $15 ages 16 and under; www.wichitatix.com.

Supper With Santa, dinner, stories, goodie bag, visit by Santa; includes Illuminations in the gardens of Botanica. 5:30 p.m. Dec. 2 (Italian supper), Dec. 9 (Mexican) and Dec. 16 (pizza). $14 ($12 member) for ages 13 and up and $10 ($8 member) for ages 3 to 12. Make reservations by calling 316-264-0448, ext. 115. Information, www.botanica.org.

Mayor’s Tree Lighting, A Night with Santa, lighting of downtown Christmas tree, games, fireworks, food trucks, take your own photo with Santa, or have a professional photo taken for a fee. Starts at 6 p.m. Dec. 2 on Kennedy Plaza, continues 6:30-8:30 p.m. inside Century II Exhibition and Convention halls. Free.

A Patsy Cline Christmas, Christmas chuckwagon supper, Kim Coslett and the Patsy Cline Tribute Band show, horse-drawn-wagon rides, classic cowboy movies and Silver Screen Cowboy Museum. 5 p.m. Dec. 4, 11 and 18. Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper, 15231 SW Parallel St., Benton. $35 for adults; $10 ages 3 to 12; younger children free. Information, 316-778-2121, www.prairierosechuckwagon.com.

Victorian Christmas at Cowtown, music and dance performances, wagon rides (weather permitting), Santa Claus, baked goods and cider for purchase, historical Christmas displays and cooking demonstrations, re-enactors, hands-on crafts for children. 6-9 p.m. Dec. 5-6 and Dec. 12-13, Old Cowtown Museum, 1865 W. Museum Blvd. $7.75 adults, $6.50 ages 62 and older, $6 ages 12-17, $5.50 ages 4-11, free for children under 4 and members. Information, 316-350-3323 or www.oldcowtown.org.

Old-Fashioned Christmas, history re-enactors, carolers, refreshments and Santa Claus, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 5, Butler County History Center and Kansas Oil Museum, 383 E. Central, El Dorado; included in admission; www.kansasoilmuseum.org; 316-321-9333.

Polar Express, family activity geared to children 3 and up, ride the decorated train around Watson Park, stop at a campfire for s’mores and hot chocolate, do a holiday activity; 12:30 to 2 p.m. and 2:30 to 4 p.m. Dec. 6, Dec. 13, Dec. 20; $15; register online at wichita.gov, clicking on Park and Recreation, or by calling Watson Park at 316-529-9940.

Christmas Parade, 1 p.m. Dec. 6, from the north side of Lawrence-Dumont Stadium down McLean Boulevard and over to the WaterWalk, followed by photos with Santa and haywagon rides until 5 p.m.; free; www.lightsatwaterwalk.com.

Friends of the Wichita Art Museum Holiday Open House, holiday refreshments, live music, visit with Santa Claus, free museum admission; 2 to 4 p.m. Dec. 7, Wichita Art Museum, 1400 W. Museum Blvd.; free. wichitaartmuseum.org.

A Night in Bethlehem, outdoor event that re-creates the streets of Bethlehem, with shops, displays and re-enactments, 6 p.m. Dec. 12 and 13, First Christian Church, 1600 State St., Augusta. Admission is $1 or a non-perishable food item. Information, 316-775-6317.

Santa at the Aviation Museum, visit with Santa in the museum’s Christmas Village with G-scale “Polar Express”-type train running underneath the Christmas tree, plus crafts, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 13, Kansas Aviation Museum, 3350 George Washington Blvd.; included in regular admission or membership. Information, 316-683-9242; kansasaviationmuseum.org.

Holiday Ornaments craft, for adults to do with children, 10 a.m. to noon Dec. 13, main gallery of CityArts; free; wichitaarts.com/cityarts; 316-462-2787.

Santa at the Barn, the zoo’s barn is decorated and the animals have their stockings hung; visit with Santa, play with farm toys, catch animal demonstrations including animals found in a manger, 1 to 4 p.m. Dec. 13, Sedgwick County Zoo, 5555 W. Zoo Blvd.; included in zoo admission or membership; 316-660-9453; scz.org.

Bucky Fowler’s Family Country Christmas, Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper, show, horse-drawn-wagon rides, classic cowboy movies and Silver Screen Cowboy Museum; 5 p.m. Dec. 14; 15231 SW Parallel St., Benton. $35 for adults; $10 ages 3 to 12; younger children free. Information, 316-778-2121, www.prairierosechuckwagon.com.

Living Nativity, 6, 6:30, 7 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 14, East Heights United Methodist Church, 4407 E. Douglas; free. Inside the church will be a display of angels painted by Paula Plott Amos, toys made by the Sunflower Woodworkers Guild for the needy, a coffee bar, and demonstrations by organist David Cason. Takes place during the College Hill Holiday Lights Trolley Tour; see listing under “Lighting Events” for details.

Breakfast With Santa, Christmas crafts including a telegram to Santa, Santa’s arrival by stagecoach and photos with him, breakfast, 9 a.m. Dec. 20, Old Cowtown Museum, 1865 W. Museum Blvd. $12.95 ages 16 and older, $7.95 ages 4 to 15. Information, 316-350-3323 or www.oldcowtown.org.

LIGHTING EVENTS

Lights on St. Paul, drive-through light display with more than 1 million lights synchronized to music at the corner of St. Paul and Douglas, 5:30 p.m. Nov. 27 to Dec. 28. Free; donations accepted, $5 suggested. Santa photos available Fridays-Sundays for donation. Information, www.arc-sedgwickcounty.org or call 316-943-1191.

Illuminations, elaborate walk-though light display with more than 120 trees, music performances, nightly Santa appearances, hot drinks and snacks for sale; 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Nov. 28 to Dec. 31 (excluding Dec. 24 and 25), Botanica, 701 N. Amidon. $8, $7 members, $6 ages 3-12, under 3 free. Advance tickets at Botanica or QuikTrip stores. Information, 316-264-0448; botanica.org.

Heartspring’s Lights at WaterWalk, walk or drive through light displays, sundown through 10 p.m. Nov. 28 through Dec. 25, downtown at the WaterWalk, entry on South Water Street from Waterman to Dewey. Free. Information: 316-634-8700 or lightsatwaterwalk.com.

College Hill Holiday Lights Trolley Tour, take a trolley past houses lighted up for Christmas in College Hill, 5:30 to 9 p.m. Dec. 14; trolleys set out from East Heights United Methodist Church, 4407 E. Douglas; $6 (free for children under 3). Buy tickets for specific tour times starting Dec. 8 at Traditions, 3220 E. Douglas.

SHOPPING

Country Boutique, crafters, vendors, samples and door prizes, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 15, Bethany Lutheran Church and School, 1000 W. 26th St. South. Information: 316-265-7415.

Holiday Shopping Expo, arts, crafts, gifts, face painting, to benefit Northwest High School’s Future Educators Association, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 22, Northwest High, 1220 N. Tyler; free admission; 316-390-6728.

Holiday Shopping Event, by Down Syndrome Society of Wichita, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 22, Extension Education Center, 7001 W. 21st St.; free admission. Information: secretary@dsswichita.org.

Christmas Gift Market, residents’ and staff’s handmade artisan arts and crafts items, including wheat marquetry, quilting, woodturning, painting and photography, and foods including peppernuts, zwieback and mixes; 9 a.m. to noon Dec. 6, Kidron Bethel Village, 3001 Ivy Drive, North Newton; free; www.kidronbethel.org; 316-284-2900.

Christmas Arts and Crafts Show, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 13, Cessna Activity Center, 2744 George Washington Blvd. $2, under 12 free. Information, 316-684-3971.

WALKS/RUNS

Turkey Trot, 10-mile race and 2-mile run/walk to benefit the Kansas Food Bank, 9:30 a.m. Nov. 23, Old Cowtown Museum. Youth are $10, adults are $25 in 2-mile, and $30 in10-mile. Information and registration, wichitaturkeytrot.com or 316-613-2479.

Say Grace Thanksgiving Day 5K Race, 9:30 a.m. Nov. 27, GraceMed Health Clinic, 1122 N. Topeka. Registration $15-$30 at gracemed.org.

Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis, benefit for the Arthritis Foundation. 8:30 a.m. Dec. 6, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd. Registration $30 until Dec. 3 and $35 on race day. Information, 316-448-6843 or www.jbrwichita.org.

Santa Shuffle, 5K race where all participants will receive a Santa hat, beard and commemorative Santa shirt, 9:30 a.m. Dec. 13, Sedgwick County Park. Registration $30 until Dec. 10, $35 after, at www.santashufflewichita.com.

CONCERTS

Carillon Thanksgiving Concert, noon to 1 p.m. Nov. 26, outside the Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum, 204 S. Main. Free.

Christmas Express Concert, Shriners Hospitals for Children benefit, 7 p.m. Nov. 29, Orpheum Theater, 200 N. Broadway; $20; online at www.selectaseat.com, by phone at 855-755-7328, in person at the Intrust Bank Arena Box Office and Select-A-Seat outlets.

Candlelight Concert, Wichita State A Cappella Choir, Women’s Choir, Concert Chorale and Madrigal Singers with organ music by professor Lynne Davis, 4 p.m. Nov. 30 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 1, Wiedemann Hall, WSU. Tickets $7 adults, $6 seniors and military, $3 students, www.wichita.edu/fineartsboxoffice; 316-978-3233.

Christmas 2014 Benefit Concert for Youth Horizons, Earnest Alexander and the jazz musicians of Friends University led by Craig Curry and Lisa Hittle, including refreshments; 7 p.m. Dec. 1 and 2, Abode, 1330 E. Douglas; $25; youthhorizons.net, 316-262-8293.

Christmas Organ Concert, by professor Lynne Davis on the Great Marcussen Organ at Wichita State, 5:15 p.m. Dec. 3, Wiedemann Hall, WSU, 1845 Fairmount. Free.

Wichita Community Children’s Choir Winter Prelude Concerts, 7 p.m. Dec. 5 at First United Methodist Church, 330 N. Broadway, and 3 p.m. Dec. 7 at Church of the Resurrection, 4910 S. Woodlawn, Bel Aire; $5 at the door. Information, www.wcccks.com.

Christmas Candlelight Concert, with the Friends University choirs, 7:30 p.m. Dec 5 and 6, 2 p.m. Dec. 7, Sebits Auditorium, 2100 W. University. $16 adults, $13 seniors/students at friends.edu/finearts or 316-295-5677.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra: The Christmas Attic, 8 p.m. Dec. 5, Intrust Bank Arena, 500 E. Waterman; $34.50, $44.50, $54.50, $64.50, $74.50, www.selectaseat.com.

Stan Kenton Christmas Carols, 40th-anniversary performance of carols arranged for the big-band Stan Kenton Orchestra, 10:30 a.m. Dec. 7, West Heights United Methodist Church, 745 N. Westlink; free.

Handel’s Messiah, Wichita Choral Society’s 69th annual performance, 2 p.m. Dec. 7, First United Methodist Church, 330 N. Broadway; $10. Information, 316-524-0995.

The Dennis Family Christmas Concert, 31st annual concert, 6 p.m. Dec 7, St. James Baptist Church, 1350 N. Ash. Admission free; donations accepted for local charities. Information, 316-734-1495.

Spirit of the Season Free Family Holiday Concert, Wichita Symphony performing holiday music, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9, Century II Convention Hall, free with ticket available at www.wichitasymphony.org. Information: 316-267-5259.

Michael W. Smith “The Spirit of Christmas” concert, 7 p.m. Dec. 11, Hartman Arena, 8151 N. Hartman Arena Drive, Park City; $23.45-$64.80, ticketmaster.com or 1-800-745-3000.

Heart of America Men’s Chorus: Cheers – A Toast to the Holidays, annual Christmas concert, 7 p.m. Dec. 13 and 4:30 p.m. Dec. 14, DeMattias Hall, Newman University, 3100 W. McCormick Ave. Tickets $15 at the door or by calling 316-708-4837.

Wichita Chamber Chorale “Sounding Joy: A Silent Night,” festival of holiday music for a capella choir, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 13, 3 p.m. Dec. 14, Plymouth Congregational Church, 202 N. Clifton; $15, $12 seniors, $5 students, high school students free. Information, 316-204-2315, www.wichitachorale.com.

Advent Concert, brass, percussion and choir performing three modern British masterworks: Rutter’s “Gloria,” Chillcoth’s “And Peace on Earth” and Kirchner’s “Behold New Joy,” 5 p.m. Dec 14, Church of the Magdalen, 12626 E. 21st St. Free; donations accepted for Guadalupe Clinic. Information, 316-634-2315.

Lorrie Morgan Christmas Show, featuring holiday favorites along with her hits, 8 p.m. Dec. 16, Orpheum Theatre; tickets $35 and $40 online at www.selectaseat.com, by phone at 1-855-755-7328, in person at the Intrust Bank Arena Box Office and Select-A-Seat outlets.

Jim Brickman: On a Winter’s Night, 7 p.m. Dec. 17, Orpheum Theater, 200 N. Broadway; $40-$65; online at www.selectaseat.com, by phone at 1-855-755-7328, in person at the Intrust Bank Arena Box Office and Select-A-Seat outlets.

Celtic Woman: Home for Christmas – The Symphony Tour, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19, Kansas Star Arena, 777 Kansas Star Drive, Mulvane; $56.50-$109, www.ticketmaster.com.

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 21, Century II Concert Hall, 225 W. Douglas; $54 and $71.50; www.wichitatix.com.

Carillion Christmas Concert, noon to 1 p.m. Dec. 23, outside the Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum, 204 S. Main. Free.

Brett Valliant Advent Concert, Christmas carols played on a 5,000-pipe organ by Brett Valliant, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 23, First United Methodist Church, 330 N. Broadway. Admission is a donation for the maintenance of the organ.

STAGE

Moscow Ballet’s “Great Russian Nutcracker,” 7 p.m. Dec. 9, Orpheum Theatre, 200 N. Broadway. Tickets $28-$175, online at www.selectaseat.com, by phone at 855-755-7328, in person at the Intrust Bank Arena Box Office and Select-A-Seat outlets.

“The Nutcracker” by the Friends University Ballet Department with guest artists from New York City, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 12-13 and Dec. 19-20, 2 p.m. Dec. 14 and 20, Sebits Auditorium, 2100 W. University. Tickets $20 adults, $15 seniors/students, online at friends.edu/ballet or at 316-295-5677.

“The Nutcracker” by Ballet Wichita, 8 p.m. Dec. 13, 2 p.m. Dec. 14, Century II Concert Hall; tickets $12.50-$40 at www.wichitatix.com.

Air Capital Chorus Christmas Radio Hour, old-time-style radio comedy featuring local celebrities and singing groups that will be recorded and played back on radio station KFH at 7 on Christmas morning, 7 p.m. Dec. 16, Wichita Scottish Rite, 332 E. First St. Admission is one non-perishable food item. Information, 316-683-9242.

Submit your events

If you have a holiday event you would like listed in the Wichita Eagle, enter it at events.kansas.com. If your event is listed here, but you haven’t entered it at kansas.com, you still need to do that so it is included in the online calendar.

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