Midwest Events

Click the state name below to search for upcoming events for that state.

Illinois              Indiana                 Iowa

Kansas              Michigan             Minnesota

Missouri           Nebraska             North Dakota

Ohio                  South Dakota      Wisconsin

Event Announcements from Midwest (and neighboring states) visitor offices:

(Click on the event name to read details.)

West Des Moines, Iowa
November 2-25
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

The Des Moines Community Playhouse presents one of the most beloved holiday classics. More info (/expand]

Traverse City, MI
November 9-16
Traverse City Beer Week

Every November we celebrate our craft beer scene with seven days of beer tastings, dinners and workshops. Join us November 9-16, 2018! More info

Waterloo, Iowa
November 10-15
Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum 10th Anniversary

Veterans receive free admission all week and admission is free for everyone on Veteran’s Day. More info (/expand]

LaCrosse, WI
November 14
‘Almost Sunrise’ at the Weber Center

Almost Sunrise tells the inspiring story of two young men, Tom Voss and Anthony Anderson, who, in an attempt to put their haunting Iraq combat experiences behind them, embark on an extraordinary journey – a 2,700-mile trek on foot across America. More info

Clarksville, IN
November 14 – December 31
Irving Berlin’s ‘Holiday Inn’


Derby Dinner Playhouse

Audience members can revel in the romance of this holiday musical classic. “Holiday Inn” features thrilling dance numbers, laugh-out-loud comedy, and a hit parade of Irving Berlin songs. Ticket price includes dinner, show, tax and parking. A special matinee buffet will also be held on Thanksgiving Day. More info

Alton, IL
November 15, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Taste of Downtown


Argosy Casino’s Music Hall

Eat, drink and be merry! Sample a variety of Downtown Alton’s local flavors from your favorite downtown dining and drinking establishments. The cost is $15 per person. More info 

LaCrosse, WI
November 15
Holiday Fair

Crafts of all kinds, meetings with Santa and Rudolph, and fun for the whole family are in store for any with the holiday spirit. More info

Alton, IL
November 16, 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Community Tree Lighting


Lincoln-Douglas Square

Come enjoy an Alton tradition, held annually on the Friday before Thanksgiving! More info 

Grafton, IL
November 16
Harm for the Holidays Mystery Dinner Theater


Pere Marquette Lodge & Convention Center

The holidays are rolling around, and you know what that means….another holiday party. Well, you’ve been invited to a special one this year. Welcome to the holiday party, and business meeting, for the family-run business of Harm Enterprises, LLC. You may know them for their fancy candles…but that’s just a cover for the real business of Harm. Crime! More info 

Shipshewana, IN
November 16 – December 30
Shipshewana’s Lights of Joy Drive-Through Light Experience

Shipshewana will become home to more than two million LED Christmas lights displayed in a mile-long symphony of various light scenes this holiday season. Shipshewana’s Lights of Joy, a drive-through light display experience, begins this season on November 16th and runs through December 30. 

Davenport, Iowa
November 17
Quad City Arts Festival of Trees Holiday Parade

The largest helium balloon parade in the Midwest.  More info (/expand]

Pleasant Prairie, WI
November 17
Jelly Belly Christmas Tree Lighting & Celebration

Annual tree lighting ceremony at the Jelly Belly Visitor Center. More info 

Nashville, IN
November 17
Sounds of Summer: A Beach Boys Tribute

We don’t want to accept that winter is coming either. That’s why you should attend the Brown County Playhouse’s Sounds of Summer: A Beach Boys Tribute on Saturday, November 17. It’ll be a fun, fun, fun time you won’t want to miss! 

Kenosha, WI
November 17
UW-Parkside Winter Arts and Crafts Fair

The fair features talented artisans and crafters, music, coat and package check, and concessions. Admission is free. More info

Traverse City, MI
November 17
Downtown Traverse City Light Parade, Santa’s Arrival and Community Tree Lighting

The Downtown Traverse City Light Parade, Santa’s Arrival and Community Tree Lighting make all your Whoville dreams come true. This year’s celebration takes place on Saturday, Nov. 17 and kicks off at 5:30 pm. Come bundled up and ready to harmonize with all your caroling neighbors gathered on Downtown’s Front Street. More info

Champaign, IL
November 17-18
Festival of Trees

The Festival of Trees is a true Champaign-Urbana tradition, and this marks year 23 for the festive affair! Check out trees of all sorts and decorative tastes, win raffle and silent auction prizes, and shop the holiday gift gallery. Proceeds raised at Festival of Trees are used for community grants and programs benefiting children and families in the Champaign-Urbana area along with a new partnership with Crisis Nursery. Celebrate the beginning of the season with a festive event and help support a great cause!

Kenosha, WI
November 17, 24; December 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Kenosha Winter Harbor Market

You can expect to find 25 to 35 vendors on Saturdays at this market inside historic Rhode Center for the Arts. It’s open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Free admission. More info

South Haven, MI
November 17-24
Haven Holiday

Month-long activities, small-town holiday charm, merrily lit streets, Mistletoe Market, holiday parade and more! More info.

Clarksville, IN
November 17 – December 22
‘A Velveteen Rabbit Christmas’


Derby Dinner Playhouse

Travel back in time with Santa as your guide. This story about a young boy and his Velveteen Rabbit is a musical filled with laughter, whimsy, and heart. Children’s musical theater is suitable for ages 3 to 12.  Santa will be at every performance.  More info

Indianapolis, IN
November 17 – January 21
Jingle Rails: The Great Western Adventure


Eiteljorg Museum

The iconic roadside attractions and landmarks along the historic U.S. Highway Route 66 highlight new additions to the Eiteljorg Museum’s holiday model train display, Jingle Rails: The Great Western Adventure. Open from Nov. 17 to Jan. 21, Jingle Rails is an enchanting holiday attraction, featuring garden scale (G-scale) model trains that crisscross miniature replicas of famous landscapes — from the skyline of Indianapolis to the impressive sights of the American West — that visitors can walk through, around and under.

Railroad tracks guide the model trains past intricate reproductions of Lucas Oil Stadium, Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, an Aspen ski resort, Hoover Dam, Golden Gate Bridge and other landmarks. The scenes are constructed of all-natural materials: bark, acorns, pine cones, tree roots, honeycomb and other materials, and are decked out in holiday lights.

New to Jingle Rails this season is a representation of U.S. Route 66, the iconic highway that carried motorists between Chicago and Los Angeles during the mid-20th century. Starting with the classic Chicago skyline and Route 66 sign, the new addition passes notable tourist attractions from the route’s heyday, including the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, Cadillac Ranch in Texas, Sinclair filling station with its signature dinosaur and Blue Swallow Motel in New Mexico, all depicted in miniature. The scene ends in California at the Pacific Park Pier with a dazzling fully operating and illuminated Ferris wheel.

Train tables, art-making and other winter activities enhance the Jingle Rails experience. Screenings of the holiday film The Polar Express take place on Dec. 15 and Dec. 21, at 2 p.m. both days.  On Jan. 12 at 10:30 a.m., Native American storyteller Dovie Thomason (Lakota/Plains Apache) will present a family program offering an intertribal sampling of traditional animal stories titled Lessons from the Animal People, in partnership with Storytelling Arts of Indiana. Visit the museum’s website, www.eiteljorg.org, for more details about Jingle Rails programming

West Baden, IN
Nov 18; Dec 2, 16
Mixology Class at Sinclair’s


West Baden Springs Hotel

You’ve always wondered how to mix drinks like a master. French Lick Resort will help you get it down to a science. More info

Sioux Falls, SD
November 23
27th Annual Parade of Lights


Get in the holiday spirit with the Parade of Lights in Downtown Sioux Falls on November 23rd! Enjoy the sights and sounds of decorated floats, marching drummers, and maybe even a visit from Santa Claus! Bring a blanket and a chair if you have one, and warm up with a cup of hot cocoa.

Kenosha, WI
November 23
Lightin’ Up! Downtown

The City of Kenosha Christmas Tree will be decorated and the lights will officially be turned on for the first time during Lightin’ Up! Downtown on Nov 23. The event also includes free Electric Streetcar rides, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, the Lightin’ Up Business Decorating Contest, special sales at downtown businesses, live entertainment, and family-friendly activities. 

Boyne City, MI
November 23
Holiday Open House and Santa Parade

The Friday after Thanksgiving the streets of Boyne City will be bustling with the sounds, sights and smells of the holiday season. Santa will make his debut at the parade that begins at 6 pm. Join us in strolling through downtown as the local merchants businesses offer great shopping, refreshments and hospitality throughout the evening. More info

Elk Horn, Iowa
November 23-24
Julefest

Celebrate Danish Christmas traditions.  More info (/expand]

Edwardsville, IL
November 23-24
Christmas Candlelight Tours

Stephenson House

Step back in time to experience a 1820s Christmas during this candlelight event.  More info 

Boone, Iowa
November 23-25
Santa Express Train

Themed holiday train rides on the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad.  More info (/expand]

Collinsville, IL
November 23-25
14th Annual Fall Native American Holiday Market

Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site

Purchase holiday gift items made by Native American artists and craftspeople. Unique and handmade items will include jewelry, paintings, herbals, weaving, baskets, pottery, metal work, sculptures and more. This is free and open to the public! More info 

Bethalto, IL
November 23-25
Bethalto Christmas Village


Bethalto Central Park

Celebrate Christmas with a stroll through Central Park in Bethalto, with decorated, lighted Christmas-themed cottages, live music, great food, a visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus, holiday vendors and crafters, a live nativity scene, and much more. More info 

Jeffersonville, IN
November 23-25
Schimpff’s Confectionery Holiday Candy Making

Watch Warren and Jill Schimpff and staff make candy canes and ribbon candy for the holiday season, using the same copper kettle and roll molds that founder Gustav Schimpff used in 1891.  More info

Alton, IL
November 23 – December 26
Christmas Wonderland


Rock Springs Park

Drive through Rock Spring Park to see more than 2.5 million lights adorning trees and lighting displays throughout the park.  More info 

Charlestown, IN
November 23 – January 1
Light Up Charlestown, Charlestown Christmas City

Charlestown is Southern Indiana’s Christmas City. The festivities begin with “Light Up Charlestown” at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 23, in Greenway Park. Catch the holiday spirit. Through Jan. 1 visit the Animated Light Show on the Square, train rides on the Charlestown Express, the ice-skating rink, Santa Claus, and the beautiful Winter Wonderland with its 50-ft. Christmas Tree.
When: Nov. 23 – Jan. 1
Where: Downtown Charlestown
Cost: $5 for most rides, ice skating; no admission for parks, animated light show
More info

Kenosha, WI
November 24
Christmas at Kemper

Christmas at Kemper is a series of holiday events at the historic Kemper Center, which includes Durkee Mansion and Anderson Arts Center. More info 

Jerseyville, IL
November 24
Downtown Country Christmas

Join in holiday fun for the entire family at the Jerseyville Country Christmas. The festivities will begin with the arrival of Santa Claus by helicopter!  More info 

Petoskey, MI
November 24
Stafford’s Downtown Petoskey Holiday Parade

Downtown Petoskey rings in the holiday season with the Stafford’s Downtown Petoskey Holiday Parade.  More info

New Albany, IN
November 24
Holiday Fest

Celebrate the season with this family-friendly event featuring a scavenger hunt, a photo booth at the Carnegie Center, and ornament painting at Uptown Art. The YMCA will have a children’s program from 2:30-5:30 p.m. Later that evening is the “Light Up #OurNA” tree lighting ceremony at Bicentennial Park.
When: Holiday Fest, 2-5 p.m.; Light Up #OurNA, begins 6 p.m., Nov. 24
Where: Downtown New Albany
Cost: Free

New Albany, IN
November 24
Jingle Walk: Wine and Shop

Sample wine from 14 wineries at Downtown New Albany businesses and celebrate Small Business Saturday. Check-in begins at City Square, home of the Farmer’s Market and will feature a Christmas Bazaar. The event will be held rain, snow or shine. Valid ID will be required at check-in. This is a 21 and older event. All alcohol must be consumed while in the shops. Wineries may have bottles available for sale. Please drive responsibly.
When: 2-5 p.m., Jingle Walk, Sat., Nov. 24
Where: Downtown New Albany
Cost: VIP Tickets: $35 gets you early entrance at 1 p.m. Advance tickets: $25 includes wine glass & wine bag; $35 includes glass, bag & wine glass holder. Day-of Tickets: $25 includes wine glass only. Tickets are non-refundable but can be transferred.

Jeffersonville, IN
November 24
Holiday Lights Parade and Light Up Jeff

Kick off the holiday season with this annual holiday event showcase. The fun begins with train rides, inflatables, live entertainment, hot chocolate and visits with Santa and Mrs. C. The parade will run in historic downtown Jeffersonville on Spring Street between Market and 7th St. The tree lighting ceremony will be at Warder Park.
When: Southeast Christian’s North Pole Party, 4 – 6 p.m.; Holiday Lights Parade at 6 p.m., (Spring St. between Market & 7th); Light Up Jeff at 6 p.m. (Warder Park)
Where: Downtown Jeffersonville
Cost: Free, with food available for purchase

Edwardsville, IL
November 29-30; December 1-2
‘A Christmas Story’ Live Play at Wildey Theatre

Back by popular demand, Curtain’s Up Theater Company presents A Christmas Story. This family-friendly classic chronicles young Ralphie’s quest to get a genuine Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas. More info 

Sioux Falls, SD
November 29 – December 2
Disney on Ice


Be sure to get your tickets for Disney On Ice on November 29th – December 2nd at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center. See some of your favorite Disney characters and join in on the fun as they celebrate “100 Years of Magic”!

Nashville, IN
November 30; December 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23
Believe – The Magic of Christmas

Get in the holiday spirit this season while enjoying the 11th year of Brown County’s annual holiday variety show. Each year the show changes – singing, dancing, laughter, special effect lighting and lots of music! 

December Events

January Events

February Events

Midwest CVBs and DMOs: Do you have an upcoming event to share? Please send press releases to info@midwestwanderer.com.