SOUTH BEND – Make your season bright this Friday as Downtown South Bend, Inc. (DTSB) kicks off what is expected to be the best schedule of holiday events yet.
With programming by South Bend Venues Parks and Arts, the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place at the Gridiron with entertainment starting at 5:00 p.m. Enjoy live music by the Valleyaires, craft activities, live reindeer, a letter-writing station for notes to Santa, costumed characters, double dutch with the ND Jump Rope Club and more as we await Santa’s arrival. The South Bend Chocolate Cafe will be also be selling hot chocolate on the Gridiron. Once Santa arrives, the Gridiron tree will be lit and fireworks will fill the sky.
Attendees are encouraged to bring their camera to Santa’s House for free photos with Santa. All children visiting Santa will receive an “I Believe” sticker which is good for a free chocolate bar at the South Bend Chocolate Café and many other downtown goodies. Visit the Doubletree atrium for free cookie decorating and entertainment by the TMV Sidewalk Strings, tour the Gingerbread Village at South Bend Museum of Art or hang around the Gridiron for Jingle Jams with The Angles, where there will be fresh Christmas trees and wreaths available for purchase. There will also be roving carolers by the Children’s Music Workshop throughout downtown. Donations can also be made to a Toys For Tots station on the Gridiron.
Santa’s House and Workshop hours throughout December, weather permitting* are:
Friday, Dec. 1, 8, 15, 22 | 5-9 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 2, 9, 16 & 23 | 12-6 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 3, 10, 17 & 24 | 12-4 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 20 |3-7 p.m.
Thursday, Dec. 21 | 3-7 p.m.
*In the case of poor weather, Santa will be present in the Rockne Room at South Bend Chocolate Café.
Admission to Santa’s House and cookie decorating is free and open to all ages. Additionally, many of downtown South Bend’s shops and restaurants are opening their doors for First Friday 5 – 9 p.m. for holiday shopping, dining, special events, and performances.
And if you haven’t gotten your fill of holiday happenings after downtown South Bend’s First Friday events, there are many more events for you to experience throughout the month including a Polar Express Pajama Party, Grown Up Movie Night, Holiday How-To Series and the beloved Roz Puppets puppet show. For more information on all downtown holiday events call DTSB at 574.282.1110 or visit www.DowntownForTheHolidays.com.