Holiday Activities in Phoenix 2013

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Holiday celebrations are upon us and there are many great parties and activities around the Valley to attend. Check out the Fab AZ list of some of the best Holiday events in the Phoenix and Scottsdale areas.

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Fantasy of Lights Parade

Come join in the celebration of lighting of holiday lights along Mill Avenue, on November 29. The Fantasy of Lights Parade is followed by the official community tree lighting ceremony, street entertainers and the arrival of Santa Claus.

Ice Skating at Desert Ridge Marketplace

Enjoy free ice skating for children 5 years and older. Skates are provided but please bring socks! Come out and skate on November 29, 30 and December 1 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Desert Ridge Marketplace in North Phoenix.

Pet Photos with Santa at Paradise Valley Mall

Guests with pets must enter and exit using the mall entrance between Dillard’s and Chompie’s Deli. Pets should be well socialized, on their best behavior and either on a leash or in a proper pet carrier while inside the mall. All pets visiting Santa will receive a special treat. Take advantage of these photos from November 25 – December 9 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

ZooLights at Phoenix Zoo

Each year the Phoenix Zoo puts up an amazing holiday display of lights, and this year is no exception! ZooLights is happening November 28 – January 12, 2014. However,  because ZooLights happens in the evening, don’t expect to see many live animals. This event is about holiday lights, music and lighted animal sculptures.

Winter Wonderland at Westgate Entertainment District

Kick-off the holiday season with Winter Wonderland at Westgate Entertainment District! There will be a holiday ice skating performance followed by the lighting of Westgate’s 33-foot holiday tree and Santa’s official arrival. At 7 p.m. it will magically snow for the first time this holiday season. Every evening through December 24 (except for Thanksgiving Day) at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. watch as Fountain Park magically turns into a living snow globe with a snow show. For more information on all the activities being offered visit: westgateaz.com/events/special-events/

Snowfall at Desert Ridge Marketplace

On Monday, November 25th, kick off the holiday season with Desert Ridge Marketplace and Radio Disney at the AMC Fountain from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Games, prizes, dancing and more. Thereafter, it will snow each night (except for Thanksgiving) at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. within The District at Desert Ridge Marketplace. Out of thin air, flakes of fluffy white show will float down from the sky, transforming the AMC Fountain and Fireplace into a living show globe. On Saturday, December 14, 2013 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. there will be more than 35 tons of man-made snow for families to come out and play (near Sandbar). Live music, cookies, giveaways will be apart of the festivities every night form November 25 – December 24.

Holiday Cookie Decorating Workshop

Children and adults are invited to The Bakery Café at El Pedregal Shops to decorate festive cookies on November 29 at 2 p.m. Cookie Decorating Kits include plain sugar cookies, sprinkles and decorative frostings. Cookie Decorating Kits $15.00 each (includes icing, frosting, and sprinkles for 4 cookies). Reservations required. elpedregal.com

Santa Social at Scottsdale Quarter

On November 30 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., come out and take free photos with Santa, kids and pets at the Santa Social at Scottsdale Quarter.  Pet Adoptions with the Arizona Animal Welfare League; Radio Disney’s Holiday Road Show with dancing, singing, and fun; holiday music; Holiday Lighting of The Quad and the tree. Scottsdale Quarter.

CityScape Holiday Ice Rink

Come out and ice-skate with the whole family at CityScape! The Ice Rink will run from November 30 – January 14, 2014. For ticket prices and hours visit cityscapephoenix.com.

Yuletide Tea in the Lobby at the Ritz

An elegant holiday get-away for those looking for a traditional tea service. Ladies and gentlemen alike will enjoy a peaceful afternoon in the beautifully holiday decorated Lobby Lounge. Reservations required by calling 602-468-0700. $38 per person plus tax and gratuity. Royal Tea is an additional $19 which includes free-flowing sparkling wine throughout the tea service. December 3 – 12 (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday), and every day from December 17 through December 30 except December 23 & 25. Seating each day at noon and at 3 p.m.

CHILL at W Scottsdale

Don your ski bunny or bikini best and take to the W Scottsdale WET deck for ice skating or swimming. WET will be dressed to chill in dazzling holiday fashion, with twinkling lights, decorated rink-side private cabanas and blend of toasty and frosty specialty cocktails. Live music performances and DJs will also be scheduled to dial up the atmosphere on select weekend evenings. The fully-customized CHILL ice skating rink will be placed over the grassy sunset lawn area of the rooftop WET pool deck. The 1,500-square-foot rink will be composed of synthetic ice crafted from a fully recyclable polymer compound that requires no electricity, creates zero emissions and feels slower than refrigerated ice, much like skating on a real mountain pond. The CHILL ice rink is open to everyone for $10 admission including on-site skate rentals and an hour of skating. Chill hours are from December 5 – 29, Monday-Thursday from 4 p.m. -10 p.m.; Friday from 4 p.m. – midnight; Saturday from noon – midnight; Sunday from noon – 10 p.m. Guests under 18 are welcome to skate until 6 pm Thursday – Saturday until 6 p.m.; Sunday – Wednesday until 10 p.m.

Ugly Sweater Run at Tempe Beach Park

Tempe Beach Park will become abuzz with runners in all sorts of ugly sweaters to participate in this fun and festive holiday 5k, on November 23. The starting line will have photo stations, holiday music, and inflatables. Run through city streets and parks, with holiday themed stations at each mile. Refuel at the hot chocolate stations along the course. Awards will also be presented after the race in the following categories: best real mustache, best fake mustache, best beard, and best and worst sweaters. This is a fun, family-friendly holiday event.
For more information and to register, visit theuglysweaterrun.com.

Festival of Trees and Montelucia Tree Lighting

Carolers, a snow machine, adult s’mores and Santa make an appearance on Tuesday, Dec. 3 at 5 p.m. at the Montelucia Tree Lighting and Festival of Trees Cocktail Reception. Thirteen of the Valley’s top interior designers have been selected to design beautifully decorated one-of-a-kind Christmas Trees for auction at the 2013 “Festival of Trees”. This event raises money for patients and families of Phoenix Children’s Hospital and its exemplary services and care that are provided to the sick and injured children. Following will be an invite only Luncheon on Wednesday December 4th at 11:30 a.m. where attendees will enjoy an afternoon of fine food and the opportunity to purchase a holiday wreath or bid on the beautiful trees. Tickets to the luncheon are $50 each and can be purchased by visiting www.pchfestivaloftrees.com. The public is welcome to view the trees during the resort’s normal hours. The trees will be located at the Castillo Lucena Great Hall off of the Central Plaza.

Holiday Tree Lighting at Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort

Join Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort on Wednesday, December 4, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m., in celebrating the season with a Holiday Tree Lighting ceremony and celebration open to the public. The resort’s mountainside holiday tree will be lit with festive glowing lights during the celebration, featuring holiday carolers, complimentary hot cocoa, a visit from Mrs. Claus, a station for letter writing to the troops, and holiday crafts for kids including ornament making. An “Angel Tree” benefiting Maricopa County Children’s Medical Center will be on display during the event, displaying items and holiday gifts needed for children at the center this holiday season. Guests are encouraged to take a tag and donate needed items and gifts.

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