Experience the holiday season in all its glory with events and attractions that infuse your days with extraordinary festive fun and illuminate your nights with a dazzling display of colorful lights and spectacular holiday views. It's the perfect way to immerse yourself in the true spirit of the season. 

It’s a Wonderful Life 

One of the most popular Christmas tales comes to The Candlelight Theatre from November 18th  – December 22nd, 2023. On Christmas Eve, a guardian angel intervenes to show George how the lives of his family and friends would have been diminished without him in it. This tale of love, honor and friendship continues to stand the test of time. 

59th Annual Wilmington Parade  

On November 25th, the Wilmington Jaycees Christmas Parade comes to town bringing the Jolly Elf himself, Santa Claus, in tow. Don’t forget to bring your letters for Santa with you. He’ll be taking them back with him to the North Pole! The parade begins at 11:00 a.m. on Market Street in downtown Wilmington.  

Small Business Saturday with the Shops of Bellefonte  

November 25th is also Small Business Saturday! This year, the Shops at Bellefonte will be featuring unique, handmade, artisan, upcycles and reclaimed finds, while bringing out all the stops with food trucks from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Grab a bite to eat and stroll through the neighborhood for the perfect gifts for everyone on your list.   

Hop on Board the Wilmington and Western Railroad 

From the Holiday Lights Express to the Santa Claus Express, the Wilmington and Western Railroad is nothing but not ready for the holiday season.  

The Holiday Lights Express takes on the magic of the season at night! Experience riding on board a festively decorated train covered in thousands of twinkling lights. Many of the neighbors along the route decorate their homes for passengers to enjoy while they go by.  

The Santa Claus Express brings the spirit of the season to light with the Big Man himself on board. Santa Claus will be walking through the train to take pictures, listen to your wish list items and, of course, to deliver some treats to all the good boys and girls.  

Christmas in Odessa 

December 2nd marks the annual Christmas in Odessa event hosted by the Women’s Club of Odessa. This year enjoy music, a craft fair, holiday greens, and a carousel for the perfect “Hallmark Christmas” adventure.  

Spirit of Christmas  

The Spirit of Christmas comes alive in Historic New Castle on December 9th. Experience the magic of the holidays with a stroll through private homes, street theater, and an indoor/outdoor winter market. Meet Santa, sip and savor delicious drink and fare from area restaurants and food vendors, and join local officials, town residents and fellow visitors for caroling and the annual tree lighting ceremony. 

Rockwood Holiday Open House  

This is a free family event exploring Rockwood Park and Mansion. Enjoy spectacular holiday displays of lights in the park, museum tours, free photos with Santa, and performances from local choirs, dance companies and more. 

Downtown Wilmington Winterfest at DECO  

Experience Downtown Wilmington Winterfest every Saturday in December at DECO Wilmington! This eight-stall food hall will be decorated for Santa's arrival and will offer fun for both adults and kids alike. Shop, sip, savor, and get in the holiday spirit. From 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., enjoy a holiday market featuring local vendors, face-painting, Santa and character visits, hot cocoa, music, and a build-your-own bloody mary and mimosa bar. 

Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol” at the Playhouse  

A powerful story of redemption comes to the Playhouse on Rodney Square on December 18th . Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” has enchanted audiences the world over with its simple message of holiday joy. Ebenezer Scrooge, that most unrepentant and miserly of fellows, is made to see the light as he survives a merciless battery of revelations by the ghosts of his own life: Jacob Marley and the Christmas Spirits of Past, Present and Future.  

Nutcracker  

This classic tale and magical journey comes alive on stage at the Grand Opera House December 16th –23rd , 2023.  Join the First State Ballet Theatre, Wilmington’s professional ballet company for this annual holiday tradition.  

Rooted: Family and Nature in Contemporary Children’s Book Illustration 

The Brandywine Museum of Art houses an amazing collection of original works from eight illustrated children’s books. The exhibit features a diverse group of protagonists who experience compelling moments in their everyday lives, from the wonders of nature to feeling joy through activities with family. This exhibition is on view now February 28th , 2024.  

The Rossettis  

The Delaware Art Museum is best known for its collection of Pre-Raphaelite art. So much so that the Tate Museum in London wanted to partner with it on an incredible opportunity, bringing together a number of works that have never before been seen together in the United States. This exhibition is on view now through January 28th , 2024.  

The Wyeths: Three Generations  

The Biggs Museum of American Art presents an exhibition of more than 70 paintings, drawings and illustrations by N. C. Wyeth, his son Andrew, his daughter Henriette, and his grandson Jamie. See it now through February 11th , 2024. 

This time of year is filled with honored traditions, holiday lights and, of course, amazing attractions dressed to the nines. We can’t wait to welcome you to Wilmington & the Brandywine Valley to forge new traditions and create lasting memories for everyone in the family to enjoy.