2023-2024 Chattanooga Holiday Events

Your Guide to 2023-2024 Events the Whole Family Can Enjoy

Top Photo: Rock City’s Enchanted Garden of Lights, Courtesy of Rock City

Each year, many of Chattanooga’s venues and attractions celebrate the holiday season in a magical way. Twinkling lights abound, and merry sounds of bells and carols ring throughout the mountains as locals celebrate the most wonderful time of the year. Gather your loved ones, and use our guide to discover all the festive fun the Scenic City has to offer!

lemurs in christmas decor

Holidays Under the Peaks, Photo Courtesy of Tennessee Aquarium

Holiday Events at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum

WHEN: Nov. 10-Jan. 14

CONTACT: tvrail.com or 423.894.8028

COST: Varies by event.

The Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum has an abundance of fun holiday events. Hop aboard the North Pole Limited or the Hiwassee Holiday Train for a magical train journey featuring refreshments, storytelling, and a visit from Santa, or enjoy all the sights and sounds of the season at a relaxing pace on the Holiday Lights Train. A holiday tea room experience is also offered for guests looking for a festive event sans train ride, offering 75 minutes of full high tea fare in the Grand Junction Depot.


Asian Lantern Festival at the Chattanooga Zoo Presented by Chick-fil-A

WHEN: Nov. 16-Jan. 14

CONTACT: chattzoo.org or 423.697.1322

COST: Visit website for pricing.

This year’s Asian Lantern Festival boasts an all-new collection of 38 illuminated lantern displays and nine interactive displays. From 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on select nights, visitors can explore the zoo and enjoy this special celebration of art, culture, and the beauty of traditional Asian lantern festivals.


A Classic Christmas in Cleveland

WHEN: Nov. 17, Dec. 2

CONTACT: mainstreetcleveland.com or 423.479.1000


This year, Downtown Cleveland will spread holiday cheer at Christmas on the Square on Nov. 17 from 5 to 8 p.m. with plenty of family-friendly activities. The event will include making s’mores on the Courthouse Square, the Community Tree lighting, and church choir performances during Carols in the City. On Dec. 2 at 6 p.m., the Christmas parade will depart from Bradley Central High School and showcase lighted floats and local marching bands.


Holiday Events at the Choo Choo

WHEN: Nov. 17-Jan. 1

CONTACT: choochoo.com or 423.266.5000

COST: Varies by activity.

Each year, the Chattanooga Choo Choo transforms into a winter wonderland for guests and visitors alike. Starting Nov. 17, check out Hamilton County’s biggest Christmas tree inside the hotel’s historic lobby. Other festive activities include photos with Santa Claus and ice skating at Ice on the Landing at First Horizon Pavilion.


Rock City’s Enchanted Garden of Lights

WHEN: Nov. 17-Jan. 6, select dates

CONTACT: seerockcity.com/lights or 706.820.2531

COST: Visit website for pricing.

Celebrating 29 years, Rock City’s Enchanted Garden of Lights is an award-winning holiday tradition for all. Activities include gingerbread cookie decorating with Mrs. Claus, a visit to Santa’s workshop for holiday treats, and strolling through the Arctic Kingdom and Magic Forest for icy lights and digital enchantment. Tickets sold online only.

children having fun in ruby falls christmas event with santa

Ruby Falls Christmas, Photo courtesy of Ruby Falls

NoogaLights in Soddy-Daisy

WHEN: Nov. 21-Dec. 31, select nights

CONTACT: NoogaLights.com

COST: $15 online, $20 at the gate

The 2023 NoogaLights Drive-Thru venue brings the joy of the holiday season to Pine Tree Park in Soddy-Daisy. Nestled between towering pine trees and along the shore of Soddy Lake, this condensed course will bring smiles to all the vehicle participants with a lighting experience synced to music. The show runs most nights between Nov. 22 and Dec. 31. 


Holiday Windows at EPB

WHEN: Nov. 23-Jan. 1

CONTACT: epb.com


EPB’s annual holiday window displays can be enjoyed all season long by visiting the EPB headquarters located at 10 West MLK Blvd. in downtown Chattanooga. The festive display will open at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 22 and run through Jan. 1. The windows are located on the Broad and Market Street sides of the building.


Black Friday Holiday Open House at Bluff View Art District

WHEN: Nov. 24

CONTACT: bluffviewartdistrict.com or 423.321.0235


Reminiscent of a European village, Bluff View Art District offers a unique alternative to the bustle of Black Friday shopping. Start the holiday season with live Christmas music and seasonal savings. Running from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., visitors can expect kids’ activities as well as festive treats created by working artists, local pastry chefs, artisanal bakers, and coffee roasters at this family-friendly event.


Reindeer on the Riverfront & Lighted Boat Parade

WHEN: Nov. 24

CONTACT: rivercitycompany.com/events, or 423.265.3700


Returning this year with more fun for the whole family, this evening of holiday joy will begin at 4 p.m. at Ross’s Landing. Visitors can expect live reindeer and Santa on site for photos, a hot cocoa bar, food, artists, and entertainment vendors. The annual Lighted Boat Parade will begin at 7 p.m., and a spectacular fireworks show will close out this festive night.


Ruby Falls Christmas

WHEN: Nov. 24-Dec. 23

CONTACT: rubyfalls.com or 423.821.2544

COST: $13.95-$39.95, tickets sold online only

Get ready to make magical holiday memories on the mountain at Ruby Falls. Enjoy beautiful holiday lights on the Village Plaza and heartwarming festivities in historic Ruby Falls Castle. Add your holiday wish to the Forest of Wishes, and capture cherished family moments visiting Santa with a keepsake photo. Visitors can also enjoy a cave adventure and a trip to the café for delicious holiday treats and hot cocoa.


Ice on the Landing

WHEN: Nov. 24-Jan. 28

CONTACT: iceonthelanding.com

COST: $12/adults; $10/children 12 and under

Ice on the Landing is an open-air ice skating rink perfect for making holiday memories with friends and family. This year, the rink will be in a new location at the First Horizon Pavilion. Visit the website for ticket reservations, the schedule of operation, and details for skating, party reservations, and special promotions.

the nutcracker ballet in chattanooga

Chattanooga’s Ballet’s “The Nutcracker”, Photo by Final Flash

Christmas Open House at the Georgia Winery

WHEN: Nov. 25-Dec. 23, every Saturday

CONTACT: georgiawines.com or 706.937.9463


Bring your holiday list to Georgia Winery’s Christmas Open House. Every Saturday before Christmas beginning Nov. 25, from 1 to 5 p.m., guests can enjoy free wine tastings and sip hot mulled wine while they browse for unique gifts and gourmet food products. Shop the premade gift baskets or build a custom basket. This year, during open house hours, there will be a $1 discount applied to every 8 oz. glass of wine ordered in-house.


Winter Playland at the Creative Discovery Museum

WHEN: Nov. 25-Dec. 30

CONTACT: cdmfun.org/events or 423.756.2738

COST: Visit website for pricing.

The winter season brings “snow” much fun at Creative Discovery Museum! Get crafty at the Gingerbread Workshops happening Nov. 25 through Dec. 10, and on Dec. 8 from 6 to 8 p.m., CDM Members can enjoy a visitor from the North Pole for PJs with Santa.


Holidays Under the Peaks

WHEN: Nov. 27-Dec. 31, select dates

CONTACT: tnaqua.org or 800.262.0695

COST: Visit website for pricing.

This underwater wonderland begins with holiday music and décor in the River Journey lobby. Look for seasonal surprises during your tour, including a tree twinkling in sync with the jolly jolts of an electric eel. SCUBA Claus will also be diving on weekends, and “The Polar Express 3D” returns to the Tennessee Aquarium IMAX 3D Theater. On Dec. 16, dress in your favorite pajamas, and enjoy a special screening of “The Polar Express 3D!” Meet the conductor, enjoy hot cocoa and snacks, and enter to win Polar Express-themed prizes.


Ringgold Down Home Christmas

WHEN: Dec. 1

CONTACT: nothinlikeringgold.com/events/or 706.935.3061


Enjoy holiday cheer with family and friends at Ringgold Down Home Christmas. The lighting of Ringgold’s Christmas tree will begin Dec. 1 at 6 p.m. in Citizen’s Park, and the annual Down Home Christmas Parade will follow with live music, dancing, and more Christmas magic for the whole family to enjoy!


Southern Belle Holiday Events

WHEN: Dec. 1-23, select Fridays and Saturdays

CONTACT: chattanoogariverboat.com or 423.266.4488

COST: Visit website for pricing.

Welcome the Christmas season at the Southern Belle with a scenic cruise. Choose from several seasonal cruises including Thanksgiving on the River, Christmas Dinner Cruises, ‘Tis The Season Luncheon, and Breakfast with Santa.


Winter Productions at the Chattanooga Theatre Centre

WHEN: Dec. 1-31, select dates

CONTACT: theatrecentre.com or 423.267.8534

COST: Visit website for pricing.

Celebrating 100 years, the 2023-2024 season features two exciting shows in December. “Tomie dePaola’s Strega Nona” is a family-friendly show about an Italian sorceress, a baker’s daughter, and a knock-kneed helper who wants to learn magic, showing from Dec. 1 to Dec. 17. For this year’s holiday offering, “Scrooge! The Musical” will capture hearts of all ages with the classic story of Christmas past, present, and future.

painted snowman ornament

Chattanooga Holiday Market, Photo Courtesy of Chattanooga Holiday Market

Chattanooga Boys Choir Holiday Concert “HOPE for the Holidays”

WHEN: Dec. 2

CONTACT: chattanoogaboyschoir.org or 423.634.2299

COST: Visit website for pricing.

The Chattanooga Boys Choir joins with the Chattanooga Youth Symphony, the UTC Trembling Troubadours, and the Metropolitan Bells in presenting a program of holiday music that will inspire and enrich audiences of all ages this holiday season. With shows at 12 p.m. and 5 p.m., this year’s program offers songs on the theme of hope, including traditional carols, new works, and contemporary favorites.



WHEN: Dec. 2

CONTACT: mainx24.com

COST: FREE, varies by event

Organized by Southside residents, merchants, and friends, this 24-hour-long festival features programming all day and night – from parades and live music to cook-offs, open houses, store discounts, crafts, and much more. The deadline to submit an event is Nov. 14, and a schedule of events can be found online.


Southern Adventist Christmas Concerts

WHEN: Dec. 2, 9

CONTACT: southern.edu/musicevents or 423.236.2880


On Dec. 2, Southern Adventist University will host a Christmas Pops concert by the Wind Symphony, Jazz Ensemble, and Steel Band at 8 p.m. in Iles P.E. Center on the Collegedale campus. The Southern Choral Ensembles and Symphony Orchestra will perform sacred holiday music on Dec. 9 at 4 p.m. in Collegedale Church of Seventh-day Adventists.


Chattanooga Holiday Market

WHEN: Dec. 2-3, 9-10, 16-17

CONTACT: chattanoogamarket.com or 423.565.9130


Over 200 local vendors will gather in the Chattanooga Convention Center for this annual holiday market, open on three separate weekends! With unique gifts ranging from pottery and art to festive food, locally made apparel, wood furniture, and more, there is a gift waiting for everyone on your list. Live holiday performances will also take place daily. The market is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Also, on Dec. 10, get ready to see four local chefs compete with a mystery ingredient during the Lodge Cast Iron Cook Off!


Holiday Events at The Edwin

WHEN: Dec. 2, 9, 16, 23, 31

CONTACT: theedwinhotel.com or 423.713.5900

COST: Visit website for pricing.

This year’s holiday events at the Edwin Hotel are full of festive cheer. Kids can bring their favorite teddy for a morning of holiday magic at the Teddy Bear Tea, and the whole family will enjoy singing holiday hits during Like the Dickens Carolers. Adults will enjoy a night of holiday fun and laughter at the Ugly Sweater Comedy Night, and at the NYE Party, guests can ring in the New Year at Chattanooga’s first rooftop bar.

asian lantern festival in chattanooga zoo

Chattanooga Zoo’s Asian Lantern Festival, Photo Courtesy of Chattanooga Zoo

A Classic Christmas

WHEN: Dec. 3

CONTACT: leemusic.eventbrite.com or 423.614.8343


This annual holiday tradition will feature the Lee University Symphony Orchestra, Choral Union, Chorale, Ladies of Lee, and a special guest, Full Effect, recent winner of the Next Generation Barbershop Quartet Championship. A variety of the university’s School of Music performers, as well as special guests, will perform from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Conn Center. Overflow seating and livestream viewing will also be available. Tickets are required but free to reserve.


Chattanooga Ballet’s Land of Sweets

WHEN: Dec. 3

CONTACT: chaballet.org/event-calendar

COST: $50/adults; $30/children

Kick off the holidays at The Read House Silver Ballroom with Chattanooga Ballet’s Nutcracker characters and activities for the whole family! Enjoy the iconic setting while celebrating the magic of the holidays with friends and family. From 2 to 4 p.m., attendees can expect children’s activities, professional photo opportunities, a theatrical reading of The Nutcracker, and more.


Holiday Tea at the Houston Museum of Decorative Arts

WHEN: Dec. 3

CONTACT: thehoustonmuseum.org or 423.267.7176

COST: $55/adults; $35/children

Experience a traditional English tea at Chattanooga’s Houston Museum of Decorative Arts. With seating times at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., attendees will enjoy sit-down tea service and light fare catered by Rembrandt’s Coffee House. Admission also includes a guided tour of the museum. Reservations for this all-ages event are required, and seating is limited.


Home for the Holidays

WHEN: Dec. 5

CONTACT: eventbrite.com or 423.614.8320


The award-winning a cappella ensemble, Voices of Lee, will present this Christmas concert in Pangle Hall, featuring both sacred and secular Christmas selections. Tickets are required but free to reserve online.


Lessons and Carols

WHEN: Dec. 7

CONTACT: leemusic.eventbrite.com or 423.614.8343


The Lee University School of Music and School of Theology & Ministry present this evening of lessons and carols in the Lee University Chapel from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. The service will interweave Scripture readings with beautiful Christmas music. Tickets are required but free to reserve online.

lee university's lessons and carols

Lee University’s Lessons and Carols, Photo Courtesy of Lee University

Southeastern Trust Presents Chattanooga Ballet’s “The Nutcracker”

WHEN: Dec. 8-10

CONTACT: tivolichattanooga.com or 423.757.5580

COST: $25.45 and up (plus fees),
varies by seating

With the Chattanooga Ballet’s professional company, the CSO performing live, and students from Chattanooga Ballet’s School, you won’t want to miss out on this special holiday tradition at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium. “The Nutcracker” is a story of youth and bravery for the entire family to enjoy.


Holiday Events at The Read House

WHEN: Dec. 8, 9, 16

CONTACT: thereadhousehotel.com/holidays or 423.266.4121

COST: Visit website for pricing.

Join in the holiday merriment and festivities at The Read House hotel this winter season. On Dec. 8, enjoy live entertainment, hot chocolate and cider, and pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus during the Holiday Jubilee. On the mornings of Dec. 9 and Dec. 16, you can join Santa and Mrs. Claus for a special breakfast with a show-stopping spread every kid will enjoy.


Chattanooga Girls Choir Winter Concert

WHEN: Dec. 9

CONTACT: chattanoogagirlschoir.org or 423.296.1006

COST: $15

Join the Chattanooga Girls Choir for this evening of traditional holiday music, pop standards, and reimagined favorites. The show will run from 7 to 8:30 p.m., and as is tradition, alumnae of the CGC will be invited on stage for the closing number, “Edelweiss.”


Christmas at Red Clay

WHEN: Dec. 10

CONTACT: tnstateparks.com or 423.478.0339

COST: $3

Education meets holiday fun in this annual event at Red Clay State Park. Guests can experience Red Clay by the glow of lanterns during a lantern-lit guided tour, complete with sweet treats and traditions of the past. The program begins at 5:30 p.m., and registration is required prior to the event on the state park’s events page.


Sunday Studio

WHEN: Dec. 10

CONTACT: huntermuseum.org or 423.267.0968

COST: $20/adult; $18/senior;
FREE/17 and under

Enjoy drop-in art experiences for kids and families at the Hunter Museum and make your own holiday ornaments inspired by art in their permanent collection. Regular admission applies; as always, members are free. Admission to this program is also free with a Chattanooga Public Library card if attending with children.

the read house's new year's eve roaring '20s party

The Read House’s New Year’s Eve Roaring ’20s Party, Photo Courtesy of The Read House

CSO First Horizon Foundation Pops Series: Home for the Holidays

WHEN: Dec. 16, 17

CONTACT: chattsymphony.org or 423.267.8583

COST: $15-$90, varies by seating

One of Chattanooga’s most treasured holiday events, Home for the Holidays is the perfect seasonal celebration for the whole family. The CSO will be joined by the CSO Chorus, a variety of community groups, and even the big man himself! Held at Memorial Auditorium, the whole family can enjoy the show on Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m. or on Dec. 17 at 3 p.m.


Nutcracker! Magical Christmas Ballet

WHEN: Dec. 23

CONTACT: tivolichattanooga.com or 423.757.5580

COST: $33 and up (plus fees), varies by seating

“NUTCRACKER! Magical Christmas Ballet” is a holiday tradition sure to delight! With larger-than-life puppets, incredible acrobatics, and fabulous hand-crafted sets and costumes, this nostalgic show is full of magic for the whole family.


New Year’s Events

New Years at Noon

WHEN: Dec 31

CONTACT: cdmfun.org/events or 423.756.2738

COST: Visit website for pricing.

No need to stay up past bedtime to celebrate the New Year! Creative Discovery Museum is set to host a midday New Year’s celebration perfect for children and families. From 12 to 4 p.m., enjoy activities like straw sparklers, bubble wrap fireworks, and more throughout the museum. And no New Year’s party would be complete without an apple juice toast and a dance party to ring in 2024!


Southern Belle New Year’s Eve on the River

WHEN: Dec. 31

CONTACT: chattanoogariverboat.com or 423.266.4488

COST: $159.99 per ticket

Ring in the New Year with hors d’oeuvres on the river. This three-hour cruise will board at 8:30 p.m. to begin at 9 p.m., and the trip will include a DJ, pilothouse tours, charcuterie board and champagne per couple, and plenty of celebration for the New Year.


The Read House’s New Year’s Eve Roaring ‘20s Party

WHEN: Dec. 31

CONTACT: thereadhousehotel.com/holidays or 423.266.4121

COST: Visit website for pricing.

The Read House cordially invites you to its 2024 New Year’s Eve Roaring ‘20s Party! The party package includes an open bar, live entertainment, a midnight champagne toast, late-night snacks, and a guest room for an overnight stay. Recover from the night’s excitement with a bloody mary or mimosa in Bar & Billiards on Jan. 1.

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