Dusted in its famously light, powdery snow, Salt Lake City could cover any Christmas card. But beyond being picture perfect, our city is also a gateway to some of the best outlets for celebrating the most wonderful time of the year.
Whether you’re coming to town for a winter break, or a local looking for more ways to celebrate the holidays, The Grand America not only connects guests to the best Salt Lake has to offer, it is itself one of best spots in town to get into the festive spirit. Haven’t yet toured our Window Stroll or seen our giant gingerbread house? We have all of this and lots more magic for you to add to your December calendar.
Christkindlmarkt (This is the Place Heritage Park): Modeled after traditional German Christmas markets, the magic of Christmas abounds at this special holiday event. With more than 90 unique vendors on site, entertainment throughout the day, as well as a petting zoo, storytelling times, and a scavenger hunt, there’s plenty to get the whole family in a holiday mood. November 30th-December 3rd, 11AM-8PM.
Hanukkah Market (IJ & Jeanne Wagner Jewish Center): Give the gift of locally crafted artwork! The JCC Hanukkah Market has been bringing the community together for over 25 years to celebrate the winter holidays. Featuring local food venders, live music, a children’s art yard, and a book sale, this market is the perfect place to find handcrafted gifts and support the local marker. December 4th, 12PM -5PM.
The Shops at The Grand America: This year, simplify your shopping at The Grand America. Not only do we host five boutique retail outlets in one convenient location, each shop is staffed with sales specialists ready to offer insightful product knowledge and personalize your shopping experience. Ready to start checking names off of your list? Read our go-to guide on holiday shopping for each unique personality on your list here.
Zoo Lights (Utah’s Hogle Zoo): A holiday tradition delighting Salt Lake City locals and holiday visitors for the past 16 years, this wild light display features a 135-foot kaleidoscopic light tunnel. Enjoy plenty of photo opportunities throughout the park—including in front of a 20-foot Christmas tree—and a visit with Santa. Select days throughout December. Times and tickets available at hoglezoo.org.
Sugar House “Christmas Street”: Located on the Southeastern side of Salt Lake City, the Sugar House neighborhood is well-known for its commitment to Christmas displays. Put on through neighborly cooperation, each house on 1500 East (at around 1735 South) will feature full lighting display throughout the holiday season. Load up the car for a pleasant drive-through, or bundle up and take a family stroll!
The Grand America Holiday Lights: Locals and guests from around the country witness it every year. One day, nothing out of the ordinary. Then, seemingly overnight, The Grand America is illuminated by hundreds of thousands of twinkling lights. This holiday tradition is one of our signature magic tricks. Come and pick out your favorite place to view the over 70,000 strands of lights.
For a behind-the-scenes look at how we pull off this display each year, you can read our special lights blog here.
More Classic Holiday Fare
Ice Skating (Gallivan Plaza): Skate through the heart of downtown Salt Lake City at Gallivan Plaza. This popular attraction is affordable and always open to the public. Plus, there’s plenty more to see on the Plaza at the holidays, including large-scale, interactive art displays. For pricing and hours, visit their website here.
The Nutcracker (Ballet West): Did you know that Salt Lake City is home to the first and longest running American production of The Nutcracker. Ballet West’s founder, Willam Christensen, was the first choreographer to adapt the Russian ballet for the American stage in 1944 in San Francisco. When Christensen moved to Salt Lake in 1955, his production of The Nutcracker came with him. Ballet West has been performing his rendition ever since. For more information and tickets, follow this link.