You're feeling that winter chill sneak into the air, and when you step outside if you're lucky you might be able to smell a fireplace in the distance. We're all aware that it's almost the most magical time of the year

Family reading together on sofa at Christmas time, viewed through window
Ryan McVay

One of the best ways to kick off the Christmas season is with festivals, parades and Christmas Tree lightings. They're a great way to get out and meet your neighbors, while showing the smallest and most amazed members of our family the wonder of when they flip the switch to turn on the lights for the season.

Michigan has no shortage of Christmas festivals and parades, so here are some of the greatest ones to kick off your season!

Grand Rapids Annual Christmas Tree Lighting

When and Where?: Friday, December 2nd from 5-7pm at Rosa Parks Circle

Details: This yearly event is the city of Grand Rapids kick off to the Christmas season. The ice skating rink will be open, and they'll have tons of activities for all ages while they flip the switch for the 2022 Christmas season. Learn more here.

Grand Haven's Jingle Bell Parade

Visit Grand Haven
Visit Grand Haven

When and Where?: Saturday, December 3rd from 6-8pm at Central Park

Details: Follow this fantastic Christmas Parade and festival as it goes through Grand Haven celebrating the Christmas season. At the end of the parade, you can celebrate the lighting of the community Christmas tree in Central Park. Learn more here.

Kalamazoo Tree Lighting Ceremony


When and Where?: Friday, November 25th from 5 - 7pm in Bronson Park

Details: One of the first of the season- this Christmas Tree Lighting is fun for the entire family including crafts, hot chocolate, and even some of santa's reindeer! Learn more here.

Tinsel, Treats and Trollys in Ada

When and Where?: Friday December 2nd from 5:30 - 9pm in Legacy Park

Details: This is the Ada Business Association's signature holiday event! It features the Ada Bridge Lighting, Santa's Village, as well as trolley rides through Ada Village, family activities and more! Get details here.

Annual Christmas Tree Lighting in Hudsonville

Electric Christmas tree

When and Where?: Saturday, November 19, 2022, with the parade starting at 10am in Pinnacle Center

Details: The first festival to happen on this list - so if you're ready for the season this is your stop! You have the chance to enjoy a parade, as well as photos with Santa, complimentary snacks and beverages, horse and carriage rides throughout Downtown Hudsonville. Get more info here.

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