Home for the holidays? You’re in luck. There are several ways to celebrate the season in the Longmont area, from nostalgic winter fun like chopping down a Christmas tree in the forest (permits are required!) to community traditions like the holiday lights being switched on at Civic Center Plaza.
Of course, traditions can vary greatly from one family to another, and these are just some of the options. Whether you go on a self-guided driving tour to enjoy the holiday lights, volunteer or participate in community events, or simply enjoy spending time close to home with your loved ones, the season is all about creating lasting memories.
Ahead, are 10 festive ways to celebrate the season.
Go Ice Skating at the Longmont Ice Pavilion
Enjoy the crisp winter air while gliding across the ice in a pair of skates at the Longmont Ice Pavilion, 725 8th Ave. in Roosevelt Park. The ice rink is scheduled to open for the season on Nov. 17, and if you’re new to the sport, the pavilion offers skating lessons.
St. Vrain Christmas Walk
Instead of driving around to “ooh” and “ahh” at holiday lights, take in the sights during the St. Vrain Christmas Walk in the St. Vrain Ranch neighborhood. The holiday walk happens between Sage and Saddleback avenues and it’s scheduled for Dec. 8, 9, 15 and 16 this year. Santa cameos and warming stations with hot cocoa and cider are part of the fun.
Come December, Roosevelt Park in Longmont will sparkle with millions of holiday lights. While details are still being firmed up as of press time, the 2023 Longmont Lights celebration will take place on Dec. 8 and 9. In past years, the city has hosted a Friday festival with hot cocoa carts, fire pits, a Santa visit and holiday music along with a parade on Saturday.
Chanukah on Ice
Skate with family and friends to the tunes of Chanukah music, and stay for the lighting of the Menorah. Chanukah on Ice will be from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Dec. 12 at WinterSkate, 824 Front St. in Louisville. Treats include jelly donuts and hot chocolate. The event at WinterSkate in Louisville is co-sponsored by the Boulder County Center for Judaism.
Cut Down a Christmas Tree
Venturing into the forest to saw down a Christmas tree just feels like a scene out of a Hallmark holiday movie. Before you head into the Arapaho Roosevelt forest, though, secure a permit. Or, for a similarly charming experience, head to a local tree lot farm like Longmont’s Blue Ribbon Farm, which opens to the public after Thanksgiving and sells trees ranging from 2 feet to 20 feet tall.
Rocks & Rails Mineral, Gem and Model Train Show
Looking for a unique gift? Vendors display collections of gems, plus handcrafted jewelry and model trains at the annual show. This year’s event is from Dec. 8 to Dec. 10 at the Boulder County Fairgrounds.
Longmont Artisan Market
Shop gifts and stocking stuffers at the Longmont Artisan Market, set for Dec. 9 and 10 at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. Locally made gifts range from woven baskets to ceramics, prints, candles and sweet treats.
Christmas Tree Festival Fundraiser
The TLC Learning Center’s annual Christmas Tree Festival fundraiser will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Dec. 10 at the Longmont Museum. The event will feature dozens of themed trees that are decorated with ornaments and gifts, ready to be raffled away. Tickets to the event are $85 and go on sale Nov. 6. Each ticket comes with food from Jules Gourmet Catering, a complimentary beverage and a book of six raffle tickets. Proceeds are used to provide educational and therapeutic services to kids in Boulder County.
Holiday Plaza Lighting
Longmont will light up on Nov. 18. Join in on the fun at the Library and Civic Center Plaza at 350 Kimbark St. Crafts and other family-friendly activities will be from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The lighting ceremony will take place from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. The event includes holiday music, cultural programming, hot drinks and treats and a visit from Santa.
Celebrate at a Christmas Bar
For a fun date night, make a reservation for Miracle on Main Street in Louisville, which is so festive it looks like the kind of place you’d run into Buddy the Elf. Cocktails match the decor, with drinks like egg nog and gingerbread old fashioneds. The Christmas bar pop-up also is hosting Gingerbread House Decorating days for “little elves” with tickets sold on Eventbrite.
Play in the Snow
Colorado is about to turn into a winter wonderland. Enjoy a day in the snow at Heil Valley Ranch or Rabbit Mountain Open Space, where you can go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing.
By Brittany Anas, Longmont Magazine