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How-To Holiday with Ridge: Christmas Traditions

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Christmas markets, festive events, holiday concerts, and more… In the list below, we share our favorite Christmas traditions, the things we do every year to make the season bright.

Trimming the Tree: Having you gotten your Christmas tree yet? Do you need a recommendation for a local farm to trim your tree? Take a look at Church’s Tree Farm near us (stop by for a visit afterward) or Vormittag Tree Farm in Wyoming. Both offer an excellent selection… and a magical Christmas experience.

Parades: Communities throughout the greater Grand Rapids area host Christmas or holiday-themed parades or tree lighting ceremonies beginning in late November. One of our favorites is in Holland. It ends at the “Kerstmarkt,” a European open-air Christmas market near the Holland Civic Center.

Frederik Meijer Gardens Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World: This annual exhibit is a celebration of holiday traditions around the world… as the name suggests. It features more than 400,000 lights and 40 international trees. There is also an intricate horticulture display — the Railway Garden — complete with model train, trolleys, and tiny buildings. This is a big hit with littles.  

Ice Skating: One of the our favorite locations to don our skates and pretend we’re Kristi Yamaguchi? In the heart of Downtown Grand Rapids at Rosa Parks Circle. Skate beneath the lights of the city and then swing by one of the many surrounding coffee shops to warm your hands with some hot cocoa. Ice skating is only $3 for adults and $1 for children. It includes ice skate rentals.

The Nutcracker: In collaboration with the Grand Rapids Symphony, the Grand Rapids Ballet puts on this amazing holiday spectacle for young and old alike. Experience the magic of Christmas thanks to the vision of former Grand Rapids author Chris Van Allsburg, who also wrote The Polar Express (another Christmas classic).

Head to the Lakeshore: The lakeshore is not just a summer destination and Grand Haven, in particular, has a lot to offer during the winter season. Skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, and shopping… shall we call it the “Four S’s of Seasonal Fun”? Put Grand Haven on your list. It’s a “haven” for anyone looking for fun, winter activities.

What are your favorite Christmas traditions? Have we missed one that should be on this list? Whatever they are, make sure you include us. Our new Orange Cranberry hard cider is now available in stores.