Looking to get into the festive spirit? Pay a visit to Niagara Falls USA this holiday season and you’ll find a Christmas calendar brimming with activities to get you and the whole family in the mood. From meeting The Man himself to sparkling holiday lights, there’s a tinsel-topped event happening every day in the county. You’ll soon discover Niagara Falls USA is the Christmas gift that keeps on giving! Events may be canceled or postponed at any time.
1. Each year, from the Saturday before Thanksgiving to the eve of the Epiphany, the Our Lady of Fatima Shrine goes aglow for the Fatima Shrine Festival of Lights. The event features some 75 twinkling displays to wander through, with the highlight being the shrine itself, decorated with a life-size nativity scene and festooned in Christmas foliage. (November 18, 2021 through January 6, 2022)
2. Want to check if you’re on the Nice List? Santa Claus will be parking his virtual sleigh at the magical Herschell Carrousel Factory Museum in North Tonawanda this season. Expect fun activities like ornament crafts — and carousel rides, of course! Santa will be joining via Zoom. Pre-registration is required. (November 28, December 19, 2021)
3. Lewiston brings a vintage flavor to the holiday calendar with the Village of Lewiston Christmas Walk complete with holiday shopportunities and scheduled meet-and-greets with Santa Claus. (December 4 and 5, 2021)
4. Winter bites — and no, we're not referring to the weather — but fishing! Niagara Falls USA offers year-round angling opportunities, and winter is prime time for catching steelhead, brown trout and lake trout. Unsure where to begin? Hire a local charter captain for an epic on-the-water fishing adventure.
5. We all know Santa's favorite treat is cookies! And there's no shortage of confections at The Village Bake Shoppe in Lewiston, NY. This holiday season, purchase a do-it-yourself cookie decorating kit, complete with a dozen sugar cookies, icing and sprinkles. Also on the menu, the TikTok famous, hot chocolate bombs!
6. Explore the magic of Christmas at the Santa Claus Christmas Cottage in Lockport. Visit Santa and the head Elf, drop off a letter in the North Pole mailbox, and witness the many classic holiday decorations. Bring your camera and take as many photos as you like, this experience is totally free! (Open every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday in December — beginning December 2, 2021.)
7. This winter, celebrate the holiday season and participate in a variety of Jingle Falls USA activities in downtown Niagara Falls, NY, both indoors and out. The festivities kick off on Small Business Saturday, November 27, at the LiveNF Makers Market, held at The Conference & Event Center Niagara Falls.
8. Enjoy live in-person entertainment, a gingerbread competition, and seasonal dining events at the Niagara Falls Culinary Institute this December. All guests are required to wear a mask in the building. See a full list of activities here. (December 4, 5, 11, 12, 2021)
9. Cold as ice — literally! Lewiston's Family Ice Rink returns to Academy Park, November 19, 2021 to January 3, 2022. Open ice skating is available almost daily, with special events scheduled including Skate with Santa, and a kid-friendly New Years Eve celebration. Rental skates are available in the warming house, as well as hot chocolate, coffee, and snacks for purchase.
10. Sip and savor the festive season along the Niagara Wine Trail, USA during the annual Holiday Happening event. Each two-day pass includes three tastings at each of the participating wineries once, as well as one spiral-bound wine journal to log all of your wines you'll taste during the event. Ticket prices start at $40.
11. Walk in a winter wonderland at this year's Lumber City Winter Walk on Saturday, December 4, 2021. Explore Webster and Oliver Streets in North Tonawanda and take advantage of holiday shopping specials, photo opportunities with Santa, a free petting zoo, and much more. Bundle up, and shop small!
12. Santa magic is back at the Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls USA beginning December 3 until December 24, 2021. Reserve your time to meet Santa, and choose your experience — socially-distant, or sit with the Big Guy! A visit with Santa is always free and photo packages are available for purchase. And while you're there, why not tackle some of that holiday shopping, too?
Click here for a full list of festivities and events.