Here’s the view from entering the parking lot:
Here’s the view from entering the parking lot:
After hearing that Governor Walz has announced new COVID restrictions for the next month, we weren’t surprised, but certainly could use a bit of cheering up. It’s been a tough year for everyone.
But not everything is closed! There are many drive-thru holiday lights events this season, and we got a sneak peek at the all-new GLOW Holiday Festival which is at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds from November 19th, 2020 to January 3rd, 2021!
It definitely cheered us all up, and we got to enjoy it from the warm comfort of our car!
As I posted last month, GLOW is a one-mile drive-thru that has a dozen seasonal scenes. There are over a million holiday lights, a 100-foot illuminated tree, icicle and art installations, a festive gingerbread house, and other attractions.
‘Tis the season already here in Minnesota, as many holiday events are already beginning!
And one event is Bachman’s Holiday Ideas & Inspiration Self-Guided Tour!
This takes place every year at Bachman’s in Minneapolis – along with a Christmas play starring Santa & Albert the Elf.
Though Santa & Albert’s play will be online this year, the Holiday Ideas & Inspiration Self-Guided Tour will still be happening in person – but with safety precautions in place. This year, the tour follows a one-way walking path, features socially distanced displays, and allows a limited number of visitors per time slot.
The self-guided tour is happening NOW through Sunday, December 13th, 2020. It’s $5.00 per person, but you also get a coupon for 20% off your next regularly-priced purchase at Bachman’s.
(LAST UPDATED: November 27, 2020 – List now contains 16 drive-thru events!)
The weather is getting chillier and now that daylight savings time has ended, it gets dark earlier, so what does that mean?
The holiday season is almost here!
(I know that in part because my kids are already asking me if we can put up the Christmas tree…)
And thinking of the holiday season, one thing we LOVE is holiday light displays!
But COVID-19 is sticking around, so seeing holiday lights are a little different this year. One way they are different is that there are several drive thru light displays in the state!
Here are some that I’ve found – if I find more I’ll add them to the list!
(Note: Be sure to check each event before you go in case there are any changes or cancellations.)
Celebrate the Light of the World kicks off Thanksgiving Night – Thursday, November 26th!! The show will run every night from 5:00pm – 10:00pm from November 26th through January 1st, 2021!
Christmas Lights Drive-Thru is a free, family event outside the Westwood Chanhassen Campus. It features lighted displays, live animals, treats, and more! Come experience the Christmas story in a brand-new way!
Throughout the month of December, we invite you into a new drive-through experience at Wayzata Community Church: The Christmas Story in Lights. As you drive through the WCC grounds, you will be invited to pause at 8 stations, each one sharing the Christmas story in bright lights, music, and narration, starting with the Angel visiting Mary, to the Three Kings traveling to our newborn King in a humble manger.
A free-will offering will be taken at the end of the experience to benefit our Christmas Offering recipient, Community Emergency Service (CES).
Thursday, December 3 – Sunday, December 6, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Thursday, December 10 – Sunday December 13, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Thursday, December 17 – Sunday, December 27, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Come and experience this live Christmas production from the comfort of your own vehicle. We invite you to kick off the holiday season with an outdoor program of the Christmas story. Take your family and friends on a drive-thru experience and enjoy an evening of music, lights, kids giveaways, treats, and live animals as we take you through the story of Christmas.
This is a big light display on a residential block that you can drive through in St. Paul. Their lights start on Friday, November 27th!
Check their website for updates.
Enter into a new Christmas experience at Lord of Life with Light the Way. We know this winter is unique, so the Lord of Life parking lot will be transformed into a beautiful light display that can be enjoyed safely from your car. Drive through eight stations artfully depicting the story of Jesus’ birth, and listen to an audio guide that shares how the Christmas story is more meaningful than ever. Children can keep an eye out for a special hidden symbol in each station. Open in evenings throughout December, Light the Way will be an experience you’ll want to revisit throughout the season of Advent.
Navigating all the Black Friday deals can be so overwhelming (especially since some are starting now!). That’s why I’m excited to offer a Black Friday Price Comparison Sheet for you, which will be updated regularly!
Practically EVERYTHING is on this list! You’ll find:
Of the many changes happening this year, Minnesota is now revealing new, safe ways of enjoying lights and festivities.
An all-new experience, the GLOW Holiday Festival, will be at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds for 46 consecutive nights from November 19th, 2020 to January 3rd, 2021!
The Great Minnesota Holiday Get-Together will be a one-mile drive-thru with a dozen seasonal scenes. There will be over a million holiday lights, a 100-foot illuminated tree, icicle and art installations, a festive gingerbread house, and other attractions.
How fun! Check out the map:
One of the most special and unique experiences your family can have during the Christmas season is to visit a live nativity event. When I grew up in Duluth we would go to one in our neighborhood and it was always a popular and fun event. It’s exciting for kids to see the Christmas story played out with costumed characters and live animals!
There are several live nativity events at churches in the Twin Cities this month, and all of them include an opportunity to come inside, warm up with refreshments and even enjoy some more family activities! Plus they’re all FREE! (though donations may be accepted)
For almost 4 decades, New Brighton Christian Church has provided a unique outdoor experience of the Christmas Story. Visitors have an opportunity to experience the wonder of the first Christmas as they drive past people in costumes along with a live donkey, camel and sheep in eight scenes beginning with angel Gabriel and ending with the coming of the wisemen. Music and scripture help explain the scenes and transform the church grounds to Bethlehem 2000 years ago.
Make this a part of your Christmas season traditions! Guests remain in their cars as they drive through the nativity so it is a great, free event to add while out admiring Christmas lights. Put your kiddos in their pajamas, pack the hot cocoa and stay toasty warm in your vehicles.
The live nativity runs Saturday, December 14th and Sunday, December 15th. Continuous showings begin at 6:00 pm and go through 8:00 pm.
No tickets or cost required, just intentional family time centering your hearts on the Reason for the Season.
Come experience the events surrounding that very first Christmas. For many years now, many families and individuals make visiting this Live Nativity as a Christmas tradition. The presentation will include several stations with actors from the church portraying the characters surrounding the birth of Jesus Christ. The portrayal will also include several live animals, including a camel, sheep, donkey and a cow!!!
There will be a treat inside and Christmas photo booth. All events are free but we do accept donations for our local food shelf (STEP).[Read more…]
I am excited to share the BEST Crayola Experience deal for tickets! I have a Cyber Monday deal for 50% off general admission tickets in my affiliate store – they are regularly $21.99 each but today only you can get them for $10.99 each!
· Handmade Holidays: November 23 through January 2, fill this season with color and create gifts from the heart during Crayola Experience’s Handmade Holidays! Create an ornament, color a handmade gift box and craft a Model Magic snowman. Seasonal treats and colorful photo ops also available! These holiday adventures are all in addition to 24 creative, hands-on activities.
· Crayons for Cancer Event: At Crayola Experience on November 29-30 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Crayons for Cancer will give guests an inside peek into their extraordinary story and efforts, an opportunity to participate in the unwrapping process needed to turn Crayola crayons into Crayons for Cancer creations, and a chance to see how they too can make a difference. Admission required.
Visit the Crayola Experience website for info about the attraction.
(Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links that help support this site at no cost to you. All opinions are 100% mine.)
It’s that time of year, Holiday Bonus Gift Card Offers! Many Restaurants (and some retailers) will offer bonus deals when you buy gift cards. Use the bonus for yourself or pass it on as a gift too. Either way, now is the time to stock up! Most are available till the end of the year, unless otherwise noted.
Thanks to Mission to Save for many of these listings!
Tips for maximizing your gift card savings!
First, FIND THE DEALS!
Then, STRETCH THE DEALS FURTHER!
Keep your gift cards safe!
Having grown up in Duluth, and having family and friends to visit there, our family has visited Bentleyville since it began in November 2009. We love how it’s grown and has become truly a destination for visitors throughout the region and beyond.
Bentleyville is located in Bayfront Park in Duluth and it’s open now, November 23rd through December 28th! It’s right near the highway as you drive into the city. Admission is FREE and always has been, which makes it even more popular and loved. If you park in their lot though you can expect to pay $5, which goes to the nonprofit attraction.
This is a huge walk-through light display with scenes including Disney movies, kids’ cartoons and other familiar stories. There are over 5 million lights in a 20-acre park right by Lake Superior.
You can get free hot chocolate, free cookies, free popcorn and roasted marshmallows that you can roast yourself. Santa and other characters are there for photo opportunities.
And some of our favorite destinations are nearby:
Be sure to enter my Spirit Mountain GIVEAWAY for a day of family fun, ending Sunday, November 24th!
Also, check out my guide, Ten Ways to Enjoy Duluth for Less!
More about Bentleyville here.