Holiday events in Asheville

The Winter Lights exhibit at the North Carolina Arboretum is helping Asheville shine a little brighter this holiday season. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

Our city has great holiday events by the TON, and we've picked out the best ones for you.

Some of these events are guaranteed to SELL OUT, so make plans and get tickets as far in advance as you can!:

The 34th Annual Bernstein Family Christmas Spectacular!

November 30, 2017 - December 22, 2017

Leave the kids at home for this one, but if R-rated comedy is your thing, check out the Bernsteins' annual show.

Seeing what new debaucherous sketches the Bernstein writing team will come up with has become a tradition for many Ashevillians, and this year promises to be an exciting one for audiences. What surprises will the latest Spectacular bring? Head writer Lucia Del Vecchio (well known for such hits as "MILF: The Musical" and "Off the Rails," as well as last year’s Bernstein) is at the helm as director for the first time, and the family is also welcoming a new cast member, Sarah Felmet.

The Magnetic Theatre, Showtimes 7:30 p.m. nightly, 10 p.m. late shows December 9 and 19. $25

Christmas at Biltmore

November 3, 2017 - January 7, 2018

Wrap yourself in the fragrant smell of fresh evergreens while admiring holiday décor featuring wreaths, garlands, and the sparkle of thousands of ornaments on more than 55 magnificent Christmas trees. The celebration continues across the estate, including colorful holiday blooms in the Conservatory, commemorative Christmas wine at the Winery, special menus in estate restaurants, and a must-see evening illumination display throughout Antler Hill Village.

Winter Lights at the Arboretum

Through December 31

There are 500,000 lights in an elaborate set-up. Managers said it took 10 weeks and 500,000 energy efficient lights to bring the winter wonderland to life. Besides looking at the lights, there are other things for people to enjoy, like holiday tunes, hot cocoa, beer and food.

Visitors can walk through Winter Lights from 6 p.m.-10 p.m. nightly until Dec. 31.

Lake Julian Park Festival of Lights

December 2, 2017 - December 23, 2017

Pile the family in the car, come on out, and light up your night at the Lake Julian Park Festival of Lights - drive thru. The drive thru show begins December 2 and continues nightly from 6 - 9 p.m. through December 23. The park is brightly lit with thousands of colored lights and over 50 animated and stationary light displays. The road circling the park becomes a magical journey through tunnels of dazzling lights.

The Montford Park Players present "A Christmas Carol"

Saturdays and Sundays, Dececember 2-17, 2017, at 5 p.m. at the Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre

Free. More info here.

Asheville Ballet presents The Nutcracker

December 8-10, 2017

North Carolina’s oldest professional non-profit ballet company presents the full length classical holiday tradition with stars, story, and sugarplums. Clara’s magical journey to the Lands of Snow and Sweets featuring the traditional Tchaikovsky score has become a favorite holiday family tradition.

Diana Wortham Theatre

  • December 8, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
  • December 9, 2017 at 2:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
  • December 10, 2017 at 2:30 p.m.

Ballet Conservatory of Asheville presents The Nutcracker

December 14 & 15, 2017 at 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

A magically festive, full-length Nutcracker, featuring professional classical dancers and the Ballet Conservatory’s celebrated pre-professional company.

LaZoom Tours 7th Annual Krektone Kristmas Ride

Thursday, December 21, 2017 at 8 PM - 11 PM

Dress warm, the windows might be open. Rides depart from LaZoom Room, 76 Biltmore Ave. Rides are 45 minutes long. Complimentary champagne as you board. Beer and wine permitted to passengers 21 and up. Stick around and buy the Krektones a drink after the last ride (This ad sponsored by the Krektones.) One night only!!

Gingerbread Houses at the Omni Grove Park Inn

Through January 4, 2018

The Omni Grove Park Inn invites guests not staying at the resort to view the display after 3 p.m. Sundays, or anytime Monday through Thursday, whenever parking allows.

There will now be a $20 dollar minimum charge per vehicle to park at the Grove Park, but the resort will donate a portion of the proceeds to seven nonprofits.

Grove Arcade Winter Wonderland

Thrugh January 4, 2018

During the holiday season the beautiful, historic Grove Arcade sparkles even more with its annual Winter Wonderland. This season’s Winter Wonderland celebration begins Nov. 17 and continues through Jan. 4. Holiday decorations decking the elegant halls, visits by Santa Claus, local shopping and dining, and a Gingerbread House Display are part of the family-friendly celebration free and open to guests of all ages.

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever at Asheville Community Theatre

December 1-17, 2017

Fridays at 7:30 pm; Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30 pm; Additional Saturday evening performance 12/16 at 7:30 pm
Our most popular holiday show ever! When the town terrors end up as the leads in the Christmas pageant, their interesting interpretation of the story (which they have never heard before) helps everyone rediscover the meaning of the holiday.

Jingle Bell Trolley Train Ride

Saturdays in December, 11 a.m. - 7 p.m., train rides on the hour

Hot chocolate & cookies for everyone. Santa & Mrs. Claus will be there, too!
Tickets: $10 Per Person
Kids 3 & Under Free
Purchase tickets day of the event or call 828-808-4877 or 828-808-4630 for more information.

Reservations recommended; seating is limited. 111 N. Woodfin Avenue.

An Angel Christmas at the Thomas Wolfe Home

Saturday, December 16, 2017, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Thomas Wolfe Memorial friends and volunteers will host an open house of tours, craft activities for children, and an exhibition of angel wreaths on the doors and angel figurines throughout the historic home. Wreaths made by individual crafters, florists, nurseries, and garden clubs will be auctioned after the open house to support future programs at the Wolfe Memorial.

A Swannanoa Solstice

Sunday, December 17, 2017

With guitars, mandolins, fiddle, Appalachian dulcimer, piano, Celtic harp, and world percussion, renowned recording artists Al Petteway, Amy White, and Robin Bullock share music from Celtic, American, and world-influenced customs with inspiring depth and creativity. They are joined by Grammy Award-winner David Holt, nationally acclaimed dancers Phil Jamison and Ellie Grace, Highland bagpiper E.J. Jones and his band, and host Doug Orr, president emeritus of Warren Wilson College and founder of The Swannanoa Gathering. Bring family and friends and share in joyful and thoughtful seasonal reflection at winter’s arrival.

Tickets: Regular $45, Student $40, Child $20; student rush day-of-show $10

Diana Wortham Theatre

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