60+ Festive and Free Holiday Events in Columbus

Columbus free Holiday Events

1st annual list of the best free holiday events in Columbus!

The end of the year is quickly approaching and you may be feeling just a little overwhelmed. Both of you are trying to balance time with each other, on top of time with family and friends. Not to mention, also trying to stick to your holiday budget. The good news is there are lots of free holiday events around Columbus for you to enjoy!

Note: please check back periodically, as this list is constantly being updated!

Holiday Lights and Displays

Huntington Holiday Train
Through January 2, 2019
Daily, during library hours
Columbus Metropolitan Library, Downtown

Columbus free holiday events
Can you spot Thomas the Tank Engine?

The Christmas Tree Show
November 16, 2018 – the holiday season
Nightly
Complimentary holiday pictures on December 8 and 15
Easton Town Center

The Scioto Mile
November 17, 2018 – holiday season
Nightly
Scioto Mile

Columbus free holiday events
Genoa Park as seen from the Scioto Mile | Image credit: Scioto Mile Facebook Page

Columbus Commons Holiday Lights Presented by AEP
November 21, 2018 – January 2, 2019
Festive Fridays during December include free hot chocolate and carousel rides, with musicians roaming the park
Daily from dusk until 11pm
Walk across the street to check out the Lazarus Building Holiday Window Displays
Columbus Commons

Lights of Glennross
November 28, 2018 – January 1, 2019
Daily from 5 – 8pm
Ballater Dr., Delaware

Festival of Lights
November 30, 2018 – January 2, 2019
Daily 5 – 10pm
Springfield Masonic Community

Village Lights 2018
December 2, 2018
5 – 9pm
Light the Meeting Haus at 5:30pm
German Village

State Auto’s Christmas Corner
December 4, 2018 – January 2, 2019
Lit daily, with choir performances on Friday and Saturday nights at 6pm, 7pm, and 8pm
State Auto Headquarters

Holiday Parades and Celebrations

A Heritage Holiday
November 30 – December 1, 2018
6:30 – 8pm; 12 – 3pm
Santa arrives by firetruck on Friday at 6:30
Heritage Park, Groveport

Home for the Holidays Weekend
November 30 – December 2, 2018
Friday: 6 – 9pm; Saturday: 10am – 6pm; Sunday: 3 – 5pm
Tree lighting 7:30 on Friday and parade on Sunday at 3pm
Downtown Delaware

It’s Lit 2018
November 30, 2018
5:30 – 7pm
Tree lighting at 6:30pm
Gateway – University District

Video credit: @heygateway

 

Holiday Tree Lighting
November 30, 2018
6 – 7:30pm
Lifeline of Ohio

Winter Festival
November 30, 2018
6 – 8:30pm
Tree lighting at 7:30pm
3600 Tremont Rd., Upper Arlington

Grove City Christmas Celebration
December 1, 2018
10am – 8pm
Parade starts at 7pm
Downtown Grove City

Holiday Tree Lighting Celebration
December 1, 2018
2 – 5:30pm
Tree lighting at 5pm
Downtown New Albany

Roundtown Christmas Winter Carnival
December 1, 2018
11am – 4pm
Parada at 1pm
Downtown Circleville

Roscoe Village Christmas Candlelighting
December 1 and 8, 2018
6 – 7pm
Roscoe Village

Columbus holiday events
Roscoe Village Candlelighting | Image credit: @historicroscoevillage

Short North Holiday Hop
December 1, 2018
12 – 9pm
Tree lighting at 6pm
Short North Arts District

2nd Annual Orange Township Holiday Celebration
December 2, 2018
4 – 6pm
Orange Township Hall

Bexley Tree Lighting
December 2, 2018
4pm
Drexel Circle

Holiday Enchantment at Land-Grant
December 2, 2018
12 – 9pm
Beer garden lighting at 5:15pm
Land-Grant Brewing Company

Holiday Hop and 29th Annual Tree Lighting
December 2, 2018
4 – 6:30pm
Tree lighting at 6:15pm
Hilliard Station Park

Prairie Township Tree Lighting
December 2, 2018
4 – 6pm
Prairie Township Community Center

Grandview Heights Tree Lighting Ceremony
December 4, 2018
3 – 8pm
Tree lighting at 6:30pm
Grandview Heights Senior Center

Bexley Menorah Lighting
December 5, 2018
4:30 – 7:30pm
Jeffrey Mansion Meadow

Christmas in the Village 2018
December 7th and 8th, 2018
6 – 9pm; 5 – 8pm
Tree lighting right when it starts both nights. Brockstrong Holiday Lights Parade at 5:30pm, Friday only
Downtown Canal Winchester

Olde Village Holiday Gathering
December 7, 2018
5 – 8:30pm
Tree lighting at 7pm
Olde Village Pickerington

Whitehall Wonderland
December 7, 2018
6 – 8pm
Whitehall City Hall

Chanukah Celebration
December 8, 2018
7:30pm
Easton Town Center

Carriage rides are only $10 at Easton, something to consider while you are there enjoying the lights! | Image credit: Easton Town Center website

Holiday Lights Bazaar
December 8, 2018
4 – 8pm
Parade begins at 7pm
Events at 501

Simply Christmas in Lithopolis
December 8, 2018
10am – 6pm
Downtown Lithopolis

10th Annual Clintonville Christmas Tree Lighting
December 9, 2018
6 – 8pm
Tree lighting at 7:15pm
Whetstone Recreation Center

Winter Solstice Labyrinth Walk
December 13, 2018
5:30 – 7pm
Agricultural Administration Building

Citywide Kwanzaa Celebration
December 26-29, 2018
6 – 9pm Daily
King Arts Complex

Holiday Markets

Gifts of the Craftsman Holiday Sale
November 4 – December 23, 2018
Mon–Tues and Thurs–Sat, 10am – 5pm; Wed, 10am – 7pm; Sun, 1–4 pm
Ohio Craft Museum, 1665 W. Fifth Ave.

Glenn Oak Winter Vendor Fair
November 30, 2018
6 – 9pm
Glenn Oak Elementary

21st Annual Gingerbread Cottage Craft Show
December 1, 2018
10am – 3pm
Westerville South High School

36th Annual Hollyfest Arts & Crafts Show
December 1, 2018
9am – 3pm
Hilliard Davidson High School

ArtPop Holiday Hop
December 1, 2018
6:30 – 9:30pm
Le Meridien Columbus, The Joseph

Bexley Festival of the Arts
December 1, 2018
10am – 4pm
Montrose Elementary School

Christmas on the Towne
December 1, 2018
10am – 3pm
Olde Reynoldsburg

Dublin Jerome PTO Holiday Bazaar
December 1, 2018
10am – 3pm
Dublin Jerome High School

Holiday Open House
December 1, 2018
10am – 2pm
Sunny Meadows Flower Farm

Made LOCAL Marketplace Holiday Show
December 1, 2018
9am – 4pm
Bridgewater Banquet Center

Mistletoe Market
December 1, 2018
10am – 8pm
Downtown Grove City

Christmas at Rock Mill
December 2, 2018
12 – 4pm
Stebelton Park at Rock Mill

Happy and Gay Holiday Craft Show
November 30 – December 2, 2018
6 – 10pm; 12 – 7pm; 11 – 4pm
Stonewall Columbus

Holiday Hop 2018
December 2, 2018
12 – 4pm
Downtown Bexley

HolidayVille 2018
December 2, 2018
12 – 4pm
TY Fine Furniture, Clintonville

Columbus free holiday events
Pattycake Bakery 2014 window contest winner at HolidayVille | Image credit: @expcville

German Village Makers Market
December 2, 2018
4 – 8pm
Corner of Park and Thurman in German Village

Holiday Flea
December 2, 2018
12 – 5pm
Seventh Son Brewery

Not Your Mama’s Craft Market at Village Lights
December 2, 2018
2 – 8pm
Schiller Park

Holiday Market
December 7 and 8, 2018
5:30 – 8:30pm; 8am – 3pm
Aladdin Temple

Holiday Market and Craft Fair
December 8, 2018
10am – 1pm
Dublin Recreation Center

Nocino Fest & Holiday Open House
December 8, 2018
12 – 3pm
Watershed Distillery

The Stupendous, Wonderful, Great Holiday Grove City Craft Fair
December 9, 2018
10am – 5pm
American Legion 164

Vegan Holiday Pop-Up Market
December 9, 2018
11am – 3pm
Ching Ter Maitreya Temple

Winter DogTap Exchange
December 9, 2018
12 – 5pm
DogTap Columbus

Festivus 2018
December 14-16, 2018
6 – 10pm; 11am – 6pm; 12 – 5pm
Strongwater Events

Circleville Country Christmas Craft Bazaar
December 15, 2018
10am – 3pm
Shawnee Event Center

2018 Columbus Winter Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
December 16, 2018
10am – 4pm
Makoy Event Center

Concerts, plays, and shows

WinterFest
December 1, 2018
11am – 4pm
Scioto Mile

Clintonville Community Band and Choir Holiday Concert
December 2, 2018
3 – 5pm
Cash or canned goods accepted as donations
Whetstone High School

Music at the Market
December 1 and 9, 2018
11:30 am; 12pm
Lynd Fruit Farm

Merry TubaChristmas Columbus
December 17, 2018
5:30pm
Mees Auditorium, Capital University

Christmas Showtunes
December 22, 2018
6pm
Show is free, but it is in a restaurant
Union Cafe

Holiday Movies

Elf
December 12 & 13, 2018
4:30, 7, and 9:15pm
Grandview Theater & Drafthouse
Seats given on first-come, first-served basis, donation of new school supplies strongly encouraged

All images by Hannah Green unless otherwise noted. Feature image credit: Village Lights 2018 Facebook Event Page by German Village Society


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