Aren’t you glad the spirit of Christmas doesn’t just permeate December 25, but builds throughout the month? My family and I have checked out some of the season’s best here in Atlanta, performances and attractions sure to enhance your December. Here are three events you won’t want to miss!

A Christmas Carol at the Alliance Theatre

A Christmas Carol

If you’ve never seen A Christmas Carol at the Alliance, make this your year. After 20 years in the production—2 as Bob Cratchit, 2 as Jacob Marley, and 16 as Ebenezer Scrooge—Chris Kayser steps down after this season.

We saw A Christmas Carol Saturday night at the Alliance; it was my third season and I appreciate it more each time. I wish I could watch all of the characters at once because I love how they react to each other, especially Scrooge’s response to the visions shown by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future. Whether it’s pain, pleasure, shame, or dread, we experience it all with him.

I teared up all through it, especially during the songs, and by the end I was crying in that I-don’t-think-I’m-going-to-be-able-to-stop, runny nosed sort of way. If the commercialism of the season saddens you, let this production warm your heart and remind you what Christmas is all about.

Ticket Information (show runs until December 29)

Garden Lights, Holiday Nights at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens

Atlanta Botanical Gardens

Not only was this our first Garden Lights, Holiday Nights experience, but my first visit to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens in years. My three youngest and I had the best time wandering paths lit by a million lights.

We loved strolling themed displays, discovering carolers under a bridge, making s’mores, and sipping hot chocolate and spiced cider. I asked my kids their favorite things and got these answers:

Atlanta Botanical Gardens snake“I liked the circle thingies that lit up with the music.” – 10-year-old daughter, referring to the Orchestral Orbs, a topiary light show choreographed to holiday music.

“Holding the map (he was our official guide), the hot chocolate, the bulbs that change to the music.” – 12-year-old son, also referring to the Orchestral Orbs.

“The snake.” – 8-year-old daughter, referring to a large snake topiary/light creation, pictured here.

Rates and Ticket Information (tickets are limited each evening and advance purchase is recommended)

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer at the Center for Puppetry Arts

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

If you hold warm childhood memories of this classic Christmas special, take your kids to see Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer at the Center for Puppetry Arts. You’ll be amazed at how close it is to the beloved TV classic, something I wouldn’t have thought possible in a play.

The puppets look just like the puppets used in the animated TV show and the set is designed in a way that looks like you’re viewing a screen. I promise you’ll enjoy it as much as your kids.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Be sure to check out the Create-A-Puppet-Workshop upstairs after the show and make an Abominable Snowman hand puppet!

Show Times and Ticket Information

Disclosure: Tickets were provided for my family to review these events.

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