Kalamazoo
43°
Partly Cloudy
7:51am5:11pm EST
Feels like: 36°F
Wind: 13mph W
Pressure: 29.98"Hg
UV index: 2
WedThuFri
46/43°F
52/34°F
41/34°F

14 Fun Holiday Traditions & Events in Kalamazoo, Michigan

Posted on November 1st, 2021

As the temperatures drop in Kalamazoo, a festive holiday spirit spills from the streets, parks, shops and more! Check out why the holidays are a great time to visit Kalamazoo with our must-see holiday attractions, traditions and events below.

 

 

Bronson Park Lights + Candy Cane Lane

 

 

No matter your age, walking on a snowy path under bigger-than-life-sized candy canes will bring even the most hard-core Scrooge a little bit of joy! Along with the giant candy canes, Bronson Park is covered in gorgeous holiday-themed lights to admire!

 

 

 

 

Lights on the Kalamazoo Mall

 

 

Walking down the Mall in the cold winter weather is a lot better when you can admire the pretty dripping icicle lights that line the street!

 

 

 

 

Holly Jolly Trolley

 

 

The Holly Jolly Trolley travels around downtown Kalamazoo to provide people with easy access to parking lots, stores, restaurants, and more. Bring your friends and family and ride in the heated comfort of an old-style trolley. The ride is free! View the Holly Jolly Trolley route

 

 

 

 

Snap a photo with giant Santa on the Mall

 

 

Take a stroll down the Kalamazoo Mall during the holiday season and you can’t miss the giant waving Santa statue! If you’re not one for taking photos with a real-life human Santa, this spectacle on the Mall is the perfect photo opportunity for you!

 

 

 

 

Visit the Reindeer Ranch

 

 

Take guided tours of the Reindeer Ranch farm with our trained tour guides. Learn about reindeer, where they are native to, how they are built for the tundra and freezing temperatures, and more. Then visit with a real live reindeer and see the rest of the herd.

 

 

 

 

Visit Santa’s Workshop at the Radisson Plaza Hotel

 

 

 

 

 

 

Events

 

Kalamazoo Holiday Parade

 

Kalamazoo Holiday Parade is full of beautiful floats, marching bands and even Santa Clause will wind through downtown Kalamazoo. The parade is a yearly tradition. Organizations, businesses, schools and colleges participate by hosting holiday community floats, marching bands, clowns, and other entertainment. The parade is highlighted with the addition of almost five giant size character balloons that literally fill the street.

 

 

 

 

Kalamazoo’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony 

 

A Kalamazoo Classic – The City of Kalamazoo’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony will once again be held at Bronson Park, the heart of Kalamazoo. The Mayor, City Commissioners, City Manager and Santa will all be on hand to read ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’, light Kalamazoo’s Christmas trees, and kickoff another great holiday season for the City of Kalamazoo!

 

 

 

 

Gilmore Car Museum’s Winter Wonderland

 

 

Guests can expect to drive their cars through the winding roadways within the museum’s picturesque campus, to be dazzled by more than 25 individual themed light displays, lighted historic barns, and decorated vintage-era car dealerships.

When the drive ends, the experience continues inside the museum – with the Gilmore’s Festival of Trees displayed among hundreds of spectacular classic cars, a special Christmas Through The Decades exhibit, a visit with Santa Claus, reindeer games for the kids, and available holiday food & beverage items.

 

 

 

 

Downtown Kalamazoo Santa’s Workshop

 

Do you remember the excitement of visiting Santa as a child? The magic of Santa’s workshop, the anticipation of sitting on his lap and telling him everything you want on your very long list…perhaps you shed a few nervous tears!….and the letters written to Santa, the decorations, the music? Downtown Kalamazoo has a long tradition of making the best holiday memories with Santa and this year is no exception!

 

 

 

 

W.K. Kellogg Manor House Holiday Walk & Market

 

The Holidays are a special time of the year at the W.K. Kellogg Manor House. Each room is creatively decorated by Manor House staff, volunteers and local artists and artisans selling unique and handcrafted gifts throughout the house. Self-guided tours are concluded by hot spiced tea and cookies. Docents are on site to offer history of W.K. Kellogg’s life, career and stories of times spent at the former summer estate.

 

 

 

 

Christmas in the Village of Vicksburg 

 

Christmas in the Village is an annual event that is FREE for the entire community. This year, there will be more entertainment, a reindeer petting zoo, more wagons for the wagon rides, the night time parade, shopping, kids crafts, and more!

 

 

 

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation at The Kalamazoo State Theatre

 

 

 

 

 

Santa Skate at Millennium Park Ice Rink

 

 

An afternoon of fun on the ice with jolly Ol’ Saint Nick! Enjoy holiday music and skating with the Big Man himself. Bring your cameras for this fantastic holiday photo op with family and friends!