2019 information listed below. 2020 coming soon!

Themed Weekends

Santa Claus is Coming to Town • Dec. 6 - 8

Sponsored By: EventSys

Tree Lighting Ceremony & Santa's Arrival

Friday, December 6 • 5 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Join us at the Gridiron at 5 p.m. for live holiday music, a letters to Santa station, roving characters, holiday photo ops, giveaways, and more.

Santa will make his grand entrance to downtown in a horse-drawn sleigh after 6 p.m. for the lighting of the Gridiron Tree and a fireworks show. Santa's House will officially open for visitors after the fireworks, approximately 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. If the line is too long on the night of the Tree Lighting, don't worry - you will have more chances to visit Santa throughout December.

FREE cookie decorating will take place in the DoubleTree atrium from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and you'll find a variety of First Fridays activities and promotions throughout downtown.

December First Fridays: Downtown for the Holidays

Friday, December 6 • 5 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Downtown businesses will be hosting activities throughout downtown, including holiday open houses, specials on food, drink, and retail, carolers, and more!

Historic Holiday Walking Tour

Sunday, December 8 • 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Free, self-guided tours of historic homes and businesses in the West Washington National Historic District. Tour brochures will be available at the event, or download a PDF of the brochure in advance by clicking here. (Note - a previous version of this brochure had a typo for the event date. The correct event date is Sunday, December 8th.) 

Dazzling Downtown • Dec. 13 - 15

Sponsored By: Visit South Bend Mishawaka

Jingle Jog - Presented by U93

Friday, December 13 • 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.

This half mile holiday jog will have you jingling as you make your way down E Jefferson Boulevard, just before the start of DTSB's Holiday Light Parade. Join us on Friday, December 13 for the inaugural Jingle Jog, benefiting Big Brothers Big Sisters of St. Joseph County. Local businesses will line the route as jingle stops, offering fun pit stop holiday activities. The first 500 registrations include an elf hat with bell, a jingle bell wristband and other goody bag items from downtown businesses. Registration is FREE and can be done online here.
Holiday Light Parade
Friday, December 13 • 7 p.m. - 8 p.m.
The 3rd Annual DTSB Holiday Light Parade will take place in a new location for 2019 - along East Jefferson Boulevard. Enjoy lighted floats and walking units as they parade down Jefferson from Notre Dame Avenue to Niles Avenue, and up Niles to Washington Street.

The parade will last approximately 30 minutes. 
Applications are still being accepted. Click here for more information.
Holiday Fitness Fest
 Beacon Health & Fitness
Saturday, December 14 • 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Balance all the holiday goodies with a morning of FREE fitness classes at Beacon Health & Fitness located in the Leighton Healthplex Building, 111 W. Jefferson Blvd. Third Floor.
Entry is free with a non-perishable food donation or $1 to the Food Bank of Northern Indiana. Their most needed items are canned soups and boxed helper meals.

Try one or many of the classes offered:

8 - 8:45 am Xcelerate Spin Class (w/Jack in Spin Studio)
8- 9 am BODYPUMP™ (w/Jessica G. in Gym)
9:15 - 10 am Pilates (w/Brittnay in Group Fitness Studio)
9:30 - 10:30 am Water in Motion (w/Brenda in Pool)
10:15 - 11:30 am Yoga (w/Lee in Group Fitness Studio)
10:15 - 11 am Cardio Dance (in Gym)

Holly Jolly Downtown • Dec. 20 - 22

Sponsored By: PNC

Roz Puppet Show

Century Center's Discovery Ballroom

Friday, December 20 • 6:30 p.m. - 7:15 p.m.

Free holiday- themed musical puppet show.

Grown-up Movie Night: "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation"

Four Winds Field

Fri., December 20 • 7 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.

DTSB and the South Bend Cubs are partnering once again to bring you the third annual, special 21+ screening of the holiday classic "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation." The film will be shown on the video board at Four Winds Field viewed from the Pepsi Stadium Club.

Doors open at 7 p.m., with an optional buffet from 7 p.m. - 9 p.m. Christmas Vacation Trivia will take place at 8 p.m. and the movie will start right after.  Feel free to wear ugly sweaters or festive attire to the event! There will be a holiday photo-op.

Tickets must be purchased in advance, and can be purchased here. Admission is $12 for the film and $28 for the film/buffet combo. The buffet will include pulled pork, brisket, mac & cheese, and freshly-made kettle chips. Drinks will also be available for purchase.

Holiday Movie: "Rudolph the

Red-Nosed Reindeer"

Century Center's Discovery Ballroom

 Saturday, December 21 • 1 p.m. - 2 p.m.

DTSB will be showing the beloved holiday classic "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" in Century Center's Bendix Theatre. Entry is free with a non-perishable food donation or $1 to the Food Bank of Northern Indiana. Their most needed items are canned soups and boxed helper meals.

Free Rudolph temporary tattoos will be given to the first 75 kids, and free light-up Rudolph noses will be given to the first 200 kids.

Ongoing Holiday Events
DTSB Holiday How-To-Series
Downtown businesses will be hosting a series of holiday themed classes throughout the holiday season. 
How to Create a Glass Fusion Tree
The Pigeon & The Hen Pottery
Tuesday, December 3 •  6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Learn how to create a Winter Wonderland Glass Fusion Tree. $50 cost includes supplies, instruction, champagne, and chocolate-covered strawberries. Advanced registration is required.
How to Make Holiday Jewelry
Unique Boutique International
Saturday, December 7 •  4 p.m. - 6 p.m. (earrings)
Saturday, December 14 • 4 p.m. - 6 p.m. (bracelets)
Learn how to make holiday earrings with Beautiful Beads by Robin on December 7 and a holiday bracelet with Ava's Beaded Creations on December 14. $8 cost per class includes supplies and instruction.
How to Make Holiday Cocktails
Tuesday, December 17 • 7 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Learn how to make fun and unique holiday cocktails to impress friends and family! $30 cost includes four half-sized cocktails, snacks, recipe cards, and instruction.
Visits with Santa
Sponsored By: South Bend Chocolate Company
The Gridiron
Bring your camera for free photos with Santa in his red house on the Gridiron. Each child who visits Santa will receive a special "I Believe" sticker allowing them to receive discounts and trinkets all around downtown South Bend. *in inclement weather conditions, Santa will be located inside the South Bend Chocolate Cafe.
Fridays - December 6, 13, 20 • 5 p.m. - 9 p.m.
*Santa's house will open December 6 right after the Tree Lighting Ceremony, approximately 6:30 p.m.
Saturdays - December 7, 14, 21 • 12 p.m. - 6 p.m.
Sundays - December 8, 15, 22 • 12 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Monday - December 23 • 12 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Tuesday - December 24 • 12 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Cookie Decorating, Gingerbread Village, and DTSB Merchandise
South Bend Museum of Art
Same dates and times as Visits with Santa
Visit the South Bend Museum of Art for free cookie decorating, activities, and to view the Gingerbread Village entries. Be sure to check out the galleries while you're there (free admission) and unique gift items in the Dot Shop. *Cookie decorating will take place at the DoubleTree atrium December 6.
Visits Rudolph & The Grinch
South Bend Chocolate Cafe
Same dates and times as Visits with Santa
Festival of Trees
Throughout downtown
December 6 - December 24
View holiday trees decorated by local sponsors and organizations! Vote for your favorite on DTSB's Facebook page. The winner is announced December 24 on DTSB's social media
Holiday Window Display Contest
Throughout downtown
December 6 - December 24
Take a tour of the downtown decor to view all of the contestants in this year's Holiday Window Display Contest and vote for your favorite DTSB's Facebook page. Winner is announced December 24 on DTSB's social media. Here is a list of this year's participating businesses:

Ali on the Boulevard

Brain Lair Bookstore

Cambria Boutique


Classic Image Photography

Idle Hours

Linden Grill

South Bend Civic Theatre – Foegley Plaza


Unique Boutique International

Tree & Wreath Sale
The Gridiron
December 6 - December 15
Choose from a wide variety of fresh, locally-grown trees and wreaths from J & K Tree Farm. Tree sales benefit local non-profit groups. While supplies last. Cash only.
Snowball Fights
The Gridiron
Saturdays & Sundays during Visits with Santa
Kids of all ages are invited to take part in these friendly community snowball fights using fake snowballs.
More Holiday Events

Holiday Performances at The Morris Performing Arts

Holiday Dreams "A Spectacular Holiday Cirque"

Friday, November 29  • 7 p.m.


Holiday Dreams is a holiday show unlike any other. The story centers around two characters: one who is going to tell a wonderful Christmas story and the other, a Grinch-like heckler from the audience who is at the "wrong show."

Celtic Woman "The Best of Christmas" with the South Bend Symphony Orchestra

Tuesday, December 3 • 7:30 p.m.


Its eighth annual "Symphony Tour." Celtic Woman performing timeless holiday songs accompanied by the South Bend Symphony Orchestra. The show will feature music from the all-female ensemble's much loved holiday releases.

The Nutcracker presented by Southold Dance Theater

Friday, December 13 • 7 p.m.

Saturday, December 14 • 2 p.m. & 7 p.m.

Sunday, December 15 • 2 p.m.

The Studebaker family home is at the heart of the story, and their daughter, Marie, is its heroine. The exquisite dances and glittering costumes in this well-loved classical ballet are set against stunning scenery depicting historic South Bend landmarks.

Home for the Holidays

Saturday, December 21 • 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, December 22 • 2:30 p.m.

Celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with South Bend Symphony Orchestra's annual holiday spectacular! A sparkling of mix of popular tunes, traditional carols, and classical favorites.

Holiday Performances at the South Bend Civic Theatre


Friday, November 29 - Sunday, December 22

This family musical brings the 2003 movie to a new level with cheerful, Christmas-infused songs. Buddy always believed he was like every other elf in Santa's workshop, despite his enormous size and poor toy-making abilities. When Buddy discovers he is actually a human, he decides to make a change. As he travels to New York City in search of his long-lost dad and his true identity, Buddy will discover many new things and save Christmas in the process.

"The Santaland Diaries"

Friday, December 6 - Saturday, December 21

Based on the personal experiences of David Sedaris, this adult comdey puts a satirical twist on the commercialism of Christmas. Crumpet, the Macy's elf-gone-bad, is here to tell all about elfin life. Surly parents, greedy children, bad Santa's, and others are about to be exposed. Packed with plenty of witty, dry insights, The Santaland Diaries is a welcome antidote to the schmaltz of the holiday season.

Holiday Events at Ironhand Wine Bar

Brunch with Santa

Sunday, December 1 • 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Buffet Style brunch with Santa; mimosa bar will also be available.

Holiday Bazaar

Wednesday, December 4 • 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

An evening of shopping with local vendors and wine.

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party

Friday, December 13 • 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Wear an ugly Christmas sweater and receive 15% off a bottle of wine. Featuring live music by StarHeart from 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Yoga & Brunch: Holiday Destress

Saturday, December 14 • 10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Local yoga instructor Steve Krojniewski will be leading an hour long Kripalu yoga practice. Following the practice, a delicious brunch will be served.

Holiday Events at Fiddler's Hearth

Holiday Carvery Brunch Buffet

Sunday, December 8 • 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Buffet features roast beef & Yorkshire pudding, turkey with chestnut stuffing, figgy pudding, and much more. $20 ($15 kids 12 & under)

Yule Cheer Night

Monday, December 23 • 5 p.m.

With rare brews on tap, beer flights specials, and beer pairing snacks.

St. Stephen's Day Celebration

Thursday, December 26 • 7 p.m.

With an Irish Music Session around the fireplace and traditional holiday dinner specials.

New Year's Events

Scottish New Year's Eve

Fiddler's Hearth

Tuesday, December 31 • 6 p.m.

Scottish New Year's Eve complete with bagpipes, Scottish folk music, and First Foot Celebration as the new year arrives in Scotland ( 7 p.m. Hoosier Time). $60 per person includes four course menu  and choice of champagne or scotch for the "midnight" toast. Reservations required 574-232-2853

Totally 80s New Year's Eve

Century Center

Tuesday, December 31 • 8 p.m. - 1 a.m.

Totally rad 80s New Year's Eve party with U93 and The 1985. All tickets include 80s party favors and champagne toast. Must be 21+ to attend.

Motown New Year's Eve Party

Ironhand Vineyard

Tuesday, December 31 • 8:30 p.m. - 1 a.m.

Ring in the New Year Ironhand style with bubbly, oysters, and live music by The Motown Machine!

Other Downtown Events

Christmas at Classic Image Photography

Sunday, November 24  • 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. 

Featuring photos with Santa! Contact the studio at 574-855-1435 or for your chance to visit and have your photo taken with Santa. Afterward, enjoy cookies and hot chocolate, then pick out your favorite images from your sessions. $39 fee includes a complimentary 5x7 print, with specially priced packages and holiday cards also available. Refer a friend and receive a free 5x7!

Howard Park Grand Opening

Friday, November 29 • 4 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.


Celebrate the grand opening of South Bend's very first park! Ceremonial ribbon cutting at 6 p.m. with activities and ice skating to follow.

Holm for the Holidays

The History Museum

Friday, November 29 - Tuesday, December 31

Over 10 Christmas trees add to the holiday decorations of the 38 room Oliver Mansion this season. Guided tours are offered at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2 p.m. Monday - Saturday, and 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday. Ticket prices range from $6 - $15. Tours daily, except Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Small Business Saturday

Saturday, November 30

Find the perfect gift in downtown on November 30, and throughout the entire holiday shopping season!

Brunch with Santa

Tippecanoe Place

Sunday, December 1, 8, 15, 22 • 10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Celebrate a Tippecanoe Place Tradition with added Yuletide trimmings and a visit from Santa Claus! Please, make reservations at 574-234-9077. Adults are $26 and $16 Children (5-12).

Gingerbread Village Competition

South Bend Museum of Art

Entry deadline is Monday, December 2. Visit website for registration and details.

Holiday Sip & Shop

Wednesday, December 4 • 5 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Shop at downtown boutiques as you sip on some wine and other libations.

Christmas at Copshaholm

The History Museum

Friday, December 6 • 5:30 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Celebrate the wonder of the season at Christmas at Copshaholm. Take self-guided, twilight tour of the 38-room Oliver Mansion and enjoy "The Twelve Days of Christmas" performances throughout the historic home. Lighting of the Gardens, Santa Claus, live music, and holiday activities for young ones add to the festivities. Reservations are strongly recommended and can be purchased online at or by calling 574-235-9664. $15/adults; $12/member; $10/youth (6 - 17).

TMV Holiday Benefit Concert

The Music Village

Friday, December 6 • 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Featuring harp guitarist Muriel Anderson.

Saint Nick Six

St. Joseph Catholic Church

Saturday, December 7 

6K run, 3K run & 3K walk.

Holiday Extravaganza

Four Winds Field

Saturday, December 7 • 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, plus free hot cocoa, 12 Days of Christmas scavenger hunt, crafts with Stu & Swopp, and more!

Sugar Plum Fairy Tea

The History Museum

Saturday, December 7 • 12 p.m.

Thursday, December 12 • 6 p.m.

Celebrate the wonder of sugar plum fairies and tin soldiers at this magical holiday tea. You will be seated at tables of eight in the Leighton Gallery, aglow with Yuletide decorations. THis one-of-a-kind experience offers a catered menu of savories, sweets, and classic teas. Tickets to the tea include tours of the 38-room Oliver Mansion, festooned for the holidays. $25/general; $20/members; $20/youth 17 & under. Reservations are required and can be made online at

Pizza with Santa

Yellow Cat Cafe

Sunday, December 8 • 4 p.m. - 6 p.m.

Enjoy a fun activity filled afternoon with Santa while eating pizza from Bruno's downtown. Goodie bags for each child. reservations are required, call 574-233-2233. $15 per person, children under 3 free.

VPA Holiday Celebration

Howard Park

Sunday, December 8 • 4 p.m. - 6 p.m.

Holiday Fundraiser for the Humane Society

The Drop Comedy Club

Thursday, December 12 • 8 p.m. - 10 p.m.

The Drop Comedy Club's Annual Holiday Fundraiser with a showcase of comics; $10 admission with proceeds going to the Humane Society of St. Joseph County.

TMV Student Showcase

The Music Village

Saturday, December 14 • 3 p.m.

With potluck.

Holiday Kick-off Party


Saturday, December 21 • 9 p.m. - 1 a.m.

With dancing, drinks specials, the option to wear an ugly sweater or other holiday-themed attire, and all of the holiday fun!

Community Menorah Lighting

Jon R. Hunt Plaza

Sunday, December 22 • 6 p.m.

The public is invited to attend the second annual Community Menorah Lighting on the first night of Chanukah