Our Baton Rouge Holiday & Christmas Events Guide is our largest guide to date with over 50 events. This list will be updated daily as we learn of new events being hosted in our area. We’re sharing events within a 60 mile radius of Baton Rouge. Whether you’re looking for a Christmas parade, holiday-themed performance, Santa visit, or lights display, there’s the cornucopia of holiday-themed programs and events throughout the season. Be sure to grab for our FREE Christmas Events List Printable so you don’t miss an event! If you have an event or activity to add, please email us – info@BatonRougeMoms.com
Thanks to Associates in Pediatric Dentistry for sponsoring this year’s Holiday Events Guide.
2017 Baton Rouge Holiday & Christmas Events Guide
Mistletoe Market of Baton Rouge
Saturday, November 11th 9-5
Sunday, November 12th 10-5
Belle of Baton Rouge
Catch up on holiday shopping while taking the kids to the Kids Zone at Mistletoe Market!! With over 120 merchants, you can shop locally in a fun and friendly environment, strollers welcome. Photo ops with Santa, Princesses, activities for kids, face painting fun and more!
Join Mistletoe Market and Be Our Guest for An Island Tea Party with the Island Princess, The Snow Sisters and The Tinker Fairy.
Tickets are 25.00 per person and it includes a ticket to shop at Mistletoe Market.
Tuesday, November 28th, with festivities beginning at 4:30 p.m. in the LSU Student Union.
Join LSU for a spectacularly fun night of holiday entertainment for LSU students, faculty, staff, families, and community members. Celebrate the spirit of the season with this seven-hour, festival lineup of activities on Tuesday, November 28
The 2017 schedule is in progress, but here’s a sampling of 2016 events:
Christmas Tree Sale
Corner of Highland Road and Nicholson Extension
Hosted by the Society of American Foresters Student Chapter at LSU
Season’s Readings Book Sale
4:30-6:30 p.m. | The Club at Union Square, Highland Road at Raphael Semmes Road
Hosted by LSU Press and the Southern Review
5 p.m. | LSU Student Union Theater
Hosted by LSU Campus Life
Featuring performances from LSU students, faculty & community organizations.
5:30 p.m. | LSU African American Cultural Center
Hosted by LSU Office of Diversity, the Office Multicultural Affairs, and the African American Cultural Center
Celebrate the origin and traditions of Kwanzaa.
LSU Christmas Tree Lighting
7 p.m. | Free Speech Circle
Hosted by LSU Campus Life
Season’s Readings, Holiday Performances, and the LSU Christmas Tree Lighting are free and open to LSU students, faculty, staff, and the Baton Rouge community. Tickets are not required.
DECEMBER 9th @ 5:30 pm- Find Parade Map HERE.
The 66th Annual Cortana Kiwanis Downtown Christmas Parade will roll through Downtown Baton Rouge December 9 at 5:30 pm. Every year, more than 70,000 people watch the parade live and thousands more enjoy it on television through the holiday season. The Parade is a celebration and a great way to connect with the community. The parade is open to everyone. Typically the parade includes about 80 entries. These entries are a mix of marching bands, celebrities, dance troups, non-profit organizations, and local businesses in seasonal themes.
November 24 – December 30
Closed Christmas Eve & Christmas
Gates open 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Zoo grounds close at 9 p.m.
- A mile-long trail through the Zoo
- More than 50 illuminated display sculptures of animals and traditional holiday displays
- A festive family activity, adding to the quality of life for residents throughout the region
- The beginning of a new tradition
11/24 – Coca Cola Santa Visit
11/25 – Ornament Crafting
12/1 and 12/2 – Safari Santa
12/8 and 12/9 – Art Gone Wild
12/15 and 12/16 – Safari Santa
12/22 and 12/23 – Ornament Crafting
12/23 – Ugandan Kids Choir performances at 6 pm and 6:45 pm
LIGHTED DISPLAYS WILL INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING:
ILLUMINATED SCULPTURES: Visitors will find illuminated sculptures representing animals and traditional symbols of the holidays.
GIANT SPECTACULARS: Larger-than-life displays capture the imagination of children of all ages. These displays may include: Flamingos, Giraffes, Lions, Tigers, Gorillas, Rhinos, Elephants, Alligators, Giant Santa, Giant Snowmen, Holiday Trains, Santa in Sleigh pulled by Giant Reindeer and Toy Soldiers. Displays can be up to 30 ft. tall!
ANIMATED SPECTACULARS: Animated displays add additional entertainment value to our event. The use of high-wattage, computer-controlled displays will provide exciting animation to displays.
VISITOR AMENITIES: Safari Photo Booth Seasonal Specials from the Flamingo Cafe Safari Post Gift Shop
Sunday, December 3, 2017
12:30pm until 6:00pm
Ring in the Christmas season with a 19th century Louisiana celebration. Musical groups, demonstrating artisans, storytellers and costumed re-enactors set the holiday spirit. The day concludes with a bonfire and visit from Papa Noel.
Admission: $10.00 per person with children ages 10 and younger admitted at no charge.
Tickets – $12.00
The Raising Cane’s River Center will once again magically transform the arena into a “Winter Wonderland” just in time for you to create your holiday memories. The Raising Cane’s River Center presents Ice Skating on the River, a holiday tradition, which will kick off the ice skating season on Friday, December 16, 2017, with an Opening Night session sponsored by WAFB. For one night only, the Coca-Cola Santa Truck will be at the Baton Rouge River Center, spreading the joy of the season. If you’d like the opportunity to spread the joy of the season, the Raising Cane’s River Center will be accepting unwrapped gifts, during opening weekend, for the National Guard’s Christmas Angel program, benefiting local families in need. Party Packages and Group Rates available! Call 225-389-3030.
Sessions: 9:30am, 11:30am, 1:30pm, 3:30pm,5:30pm, 7:30pm
Festival of Lights at Far-Out First Friday
Friday, December 2, 2016 at 5:00pm – 9:00pm
Two popular events intertwine for a special holiday Far-Out First Friday combined with the annual Festival of Light’s activities – all rolled into one exciting night! Join an evening under downtown’s historic oaks to commemorate Baton Rouge’s oldest holiday tradition. Transforming the winter sky into a wonderland, the Mayor will light North Boulevard with half a million sparkling lights. Experience the magic beneath the 35-foot Christmas tree in Town Square. Bethlehem Village with a real-life village set in Biblical times where children can craft ornaments and decorations, plus a magical train ride on the Mansion Express at the Old Governor’s Mansion. Visit Santa’s Gift Shoppe and listen to holiday music during an evening of visual, culinary, and performing arts.
Friday, December 2, 2016 at 5:00pm – 9:00pm
Your Downtown Festival of Lights experience isn’t complete without a trip to the Art & Science Museum! Experience a special showing of Let It Snow: A Holiday Music Journey in the planetarium, and get creative at our hands-on Holiday Ornament Workshop where you can create fun and fanciful crafts that are yours to keep. Admission is free with the donation of one new toy per person that benefits Toys for Tots; otherwise, regular admission prices apply. Toys may be purchased in The Museum Store. For more information or admission prices call 344-5272 or visit www.lasm.org.
DECEMBER 16TH AND 17TH, 2 PM AND 6 PM
The Nutcracker – A Tale from the Bayou, created by Molly Buchmann and Sharon Mathews in 1992, has become one of the most highly-anticipated events of the holiday season. Accompanied by the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra, the production incorporates local landmarks while maintaining the grandeur and integrity of the classic ballet. This lavish production continues to thrill children and adults alike, and snow is always guaranteed!
A “How I Became a Pirate” Christmas Adventure
December 8 – 17, 2017
The “How I Became a Pirate” crew is back! A mysterious message left in the crow’s nest of their ship brings Captain Braid Beard and his pirate mates back to North Beach to seek out young Jeremy Jacob to help solve a riddle and find the Christmas treasure. Favorite characters, a rollicking story, great songs, and a trip to the North Pole to find “you know who” – makes “Jingle ARRGH the Way!” a wonderful holiday show for the whole family. Based on a story by Melinda Long, author of “How I Became a Pirate.”
Whether a fan of the original “How I Became a Pirate” musical or taking a trip across the seas with the pirate crew for the first time, you’re guaranteed to have a swashbucklingly good time!
The 7th Annual Drive Through Live Nativity takes place on the parking lot of FBBC. They will be having a living nativity Dec 15-16. The theme is “Unconditional Love” and it will be a sit down performance. After each performance, you are invited to fellowship with the cast and crew in the Family Activity Center where we will be having hot chocolate.
- Home for the Holidays December 1st @ 7:30 pm – The Holiday Season would not be complete without the Family Pops annual Home for the Holidays concert! Join Maestro Muffitt as he leads this spectacular cast of hundreds featuring our very own Baton Rouge Symphony Chorus, and numerous guest performers and musical groups from across our city. Join us in a musical celebration of community and the spirit of the season.
- Holiday Brass in Central December 6 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm at Greenwell Springs Baptist Church 19421 Greenwell Springs Rd. The BRSO is excited to reach out to the communities of Central, Zachary and Denham for our performance of Holiday Brass, Percussion and Harp. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the season as Associate Conductor David Torns and the BRSO visit Greenwell Springs Baptist Church to perform all of your cherished holiday favorites.
- Lamar Holiday Brass December 8th @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm This concert is an experience truly unique to the community of Baton Rouge. St. Joseph Cathedral is a breath-taking setting for this cherished family tradition of the Lamar Holiday Brass concert. The sounds of The BRSO Brass and Percussion are joined by organist Robbie Giroir, and a special appearance by the Baton Rouge Magnet High School Festival Singers. In addition, the BRSO welcomes Stephanie Gustafson on the harp as a featured soloist. Don’t wait to purchase your tickets as this concert sells out quickly!
- Holiday Brass – Houmas House Plantation – Holiday Brass at Houmas House Plantation and Gardens – Sunday, December 10, 2017 | 4:30pm
Houmas House Plantation and Gardens serves as the magnificent holiday back-drop for this family event. The decorations and festivities are abundant during the Christmas Season in this historic setting. Arrive early and stroll through the gardens, and make a dinner reservation for after the concert. Join Associate Conductor David Torns and the BRSO Brass, Percussion and Harp as they perform all of your holiday favorites.
MOOSELTOE, the Moose with a Dream, and his friends come to life in this colorful, magical and whimsical musical tale. Follow our hero as he pursues his seemingly impossible dream while learning many valuable lessons along the way – lessons which are important for us all. Al Roker narrates the story while celebrities from Broadway, TV, and the movies provide the voices of MOOSELTOE and his friends in this charming production.
Michael McDowell’s Christmas Spectacular Friday, December 15, 8pm
Join Michael McDowell for the most unique fixture of Baton Rouge’s holiday season: his third annual Christmas Spectacular! Known for ferociously improvised numbers on the keyboard, McDowell has carved out a distinctive niche in the Baton Rouge music scene as one of the most unique concert pianists performing today. His 2017 Christmas Spectacular will be a departure from the typical red-carpeted, orchestral event- improvising on some of his favorite holiday tunes, McDowell will take to the stage alone with just a piano, creating an intimate setting for his favorite musical season. Not even he knows what will come next in this adrenaline-fueled, off the cuff evening of music performed in spectacular fashion!
BREC Holiday Events
Gingerbread House Decorating: Friday, Nov 10, 2017 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Highland Road Community Park
Have an evening of family fun that can be shared over and over again throughout the holiday. Create a gingerbread masterpiece with lots of graham crackers, icing and candy trims. All children must be accompanied by an adult.
Reindeer Ride Downtown Celebration: Saturday, Dec 02, 2017 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Skip Bertman Drive Trailhead – 8 & older
Welcome the holiday season with a unique nighttime family bike ride up the levy from Skip Bertman Drive to downtown Baton Rouge to be a part of Baton Rouge’s Downtown Christmas Lighting Celebration. Participants will leave the levy trail head and join in a colorful bike parade through the downtown area, participate in the many fun evening activities and return together.
Caroling in the Park: Friday, Dec 08, 2017 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM
City-Brooks Community Park
Mark your calendars for BREC’s annual Caroling in City Park featuring a park lighting ceremony, candlelight caroling and a host of other family activities for all ages to enjoy.
Creole Christmas: Sunday, Dec 10, 2017 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Magnolia Mound Plantation
Creole Christmas is an annual event featuring seasonal decorations in the historic house, traditional songs in French and Spanish sung by local school children, period demonstrations, folk crafts and the annual bonfire to welcome Papa Noel.
November 24, 2017 – January 7
Come start a new family tradition and drive-thru over a mile of custom lights synchronized to music for you to listen to through your own car radio! Tickets are sold at the gate with cash, credit card and debit card for $28.00 (tax included) per car (up to 8 passengers).
Kansas City Southern Holiday Express TrainKCS Holiday Express will be making stops throughout Louisiana. Meet Santa and receive a holiday treat bag! For more information, download the Kansas City Southern Holiday Express Train app from the iTunes store.
At each scheduled stop, The KCS Charitable Fund makes a contribution of gift cards to the local Salvation Army to provide warm clothing and other necessities for children in need. Over the past 11 years, thanks to the generous contributions of KCS’ employees, vendors and friends, the Holiday Express has donated over $1 million in gift cards to this cause.
- 28-Nov 4 p.m. DeRidder LA 100 North Washington Street
- 29-Nov 4 p.m. Many LA 750 West Georgia Avenue
- 30-Nov 4 p.m. Mansfield LA 1004 Polk Street
- 1-Dec 4 p.m. Shreveport LA KCS Yard, 4500 North Lake Shore Drive, Gate 5
- 2-Dec 4 p.m. Gonzales LA Felix Avenue
- 3-Dec 4 p.m. Baton Rouge LA KCS Yard, 1401 Foss Street
- 4-Dec 4 p.m. Pineville LA 901 Melrose Street
- 5-Dec 4 p.m. Coushatta LA Front Street
Get into the Holiday Spirit at the Reflections of the Season Christmas Light Display.
PLEASE NOTE PRICE CHANGE HAS BEEN MADE FOR ADMISSION INTO THIS EVENT!! $5.00 per Car & Passenger Vans or Buses $1 per person This walk or drive through display is open to the public from December 7th – 23rd. Thursdays through Sundays.
Drive through the grounds of the West Baton Rouge Conference Center and view the spectacular lights. Take advantage of the FREE shuttle service as there is no parking available on the grounds of the WBR Conference Center during this event; Parking will be at Louis Mouch Multipurpose arena located at 152 Turner Road. You must obtain a wrist band at the entrance gate to participate in all the activities. Come inside the conference center to visit the talking reindeer. Walk through the holiday decorated rooms. Enjoy carnival rides for the children or buy those last minute gifts from our crafters. Santa will be here on Friday and Saturday nights only. Take your holiday pictures with Santa and his elves.
Dec. 9th & 15th will be ice fishing for $5.00 per person. On Dec. 16th is snow night for $5.00 per person. Kids Craft Night will also be Dec. 17th.
PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING PRICE & DATE CHANGE FOR HORSE & BUGGY…
HORSE & BUGGY RIDES HERE DEC. 14TH – 17TH & 21ST – 23RD by Pegasus Carriage Company. Cuddle up in a blanket next to your friends and loved ones and take a ride through the lights in a horse drawn wagon for $5.00 per person. Bring your family and friends and make West Baton Rouge and “Reflections of the Season” part of your Christmas tradition.
Holiday Events Beyond Baton Rouge
Lamar Dixon Expo Center – A 1.5 mile drive-through LED Christmas show that is a combination of synchronized elements that move with music being transmitted through your car stereo & large animated displays. There are thousands channels simultaneously directing this orchestra of lights. Using the most technologically advanced equipment in the industry, Christmas Wonderland magically expresses what Christmas means to us. Our hope is for this show to spark a smile on your face like it does ours.
Spreading Christmas cheer is our prime motivation and in doing so, we find great importance in giving back to our local community. This year our show is in six different locations. Within those cities, Christmas Wonderland supports numerous charitable non-profit organizations. Please visit the “locations” tab to see our current partners at each location.
Open dusk till 10pm Monday-Thursday and dusk till 11pm Friday-Sunday
For more information, visit shadrackchristmas.com
To watch videos of this event, visit http://
Celebrate the holiday season with Nottaway! Their annual Bonfire & Christmas Festival has music, food, bonfires, fireworks, Santa and much more! New this year are our Christmas Marketplace Days (on select dates). And, of course, on Christmas Eve we’ll have our fabulous annual buffet.
- Iberville Parish Bonfire Christmas Festival: Saturday, Dec. 9
- Christmas Marketplace Days: December 9, 12 & 23
- Christmas Eve Buffet: December 24
Christmas Marketplace Nights
NEW! On the 3 different December nights when the American Queen docks here at Nottoway, we will hold our Christmas Marketplace! Come enjoy a night of shopping and fantastic sights!
- Marketplace Dates: Dec. 9 | Dec. 12 | Dec. 23
- Time: 2 – 8 pm
- Vendors selling arts, crafts & holiday merchandise
- Bonfires on the Levee
- Open to the public at no charge
Celebrate the Christmas Season in one of the southland’s most beautiful settings. The mansion will be dressed in fresh fruit, greenery and seasonal floral arrangements, reminiscent of Creole Christmases past. Delicious Cajun/Creole buffet, open bar, lively dance band, and plenty of good cheer combine to heighten the holiday spirit throughout the famous alley of oaks and the lovely antebellum mansion.