Ho-Ho-Holiday Happenings in the DMV

Ready to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year? Whether your perfect day of holiday cheer involves latkes, yuletide carols, dazzling light displays or dances with Sugar Plum Fairies, there are a ton of ways to enjoy the magic of the season around the DMV. So grab your family, your friends and your best holiday sweater and head out to one of these top local spots for holiday fun!


Frederick Festival of Lights

Dec. 14, 7 p.m.; City Hall Courtyard, Downtown

Frederick, MD

Enjoy holiday greetings, carols and inspirational messages that highlight the true meaning of the holiday season. Attendees also get to join in for a moving candle lighting ceremony.

Winter Lights Festival

Through Dec. 31, Sunday-Thursday: 6-9 p.m.; Friday-Saturday: 6-10 p.m.

Seneca State Park, Gaithersburg, MD

Winter Lights features more than 450 illuminated displays and enchantingly-lit trees in a 3.5-mile drive through beautiful Seneca Creek State Park.

ZooLights at the Zoo

Through Jan. 1, 5-9 p.m.; National Zoo, Washington, D.C.

Head out to ZooLights for a night of live music performances, delicious treats, a dazzling light show and tons of holiday shopping. More than 500,000 captivating lights transform the Zoo into a winter wonderland!

Bull Run Festival of Lights

Through Jan. 6; Bull Run Regional Park, Centreville, VA

Experience the magical 2.5 miles of holiday light displays. After viewing the lights, head to the holiday village to enjoy rides, refreshments and photos with Santa Claus.

Georgetown GLOW

Through Jan. 6, 5-10 p.m.

Georgetown’s Commercial District, Washington, D.C.

Experience the magic of the season with Georgetown GLOW. This outdoor public light art exhibition is one-of-a-kind. With D.C.’s oldest neighborhood as its background, it’s one of the most unique exhibits in the D.C. area.

Bender JCC Chanukah Party

Dec. 3, 5:30 p.m.; Bender JCC, 6125 Montrose Rd., Rockville, MD

Celebrate the second night of Chanukah with a candle lighting ceremony, Chanukah storytime, latkes, arts and crafts, open gym and more!

2018 Annual Hanukkah Party

Dec. 6, 6:30 p.m.

National Museum of American Jewish Military, Washington, D.C.

Join in for an evening of latkes, jelly doughnuts, gelt and song! Explore the museum, grab some sweet treats, play games, sing and learn about all the ways Jews in the American military have continued the tradition of the Maccabees. Don’t forget to bring your own menorah for a group lighting!

Village at Leesburg Hanukkah Celebration

Dec. 9, 4-5 p.m.

Come take a look at the marvelous Menorah in the Village Plaza and celebrate the upcoming miracle of Hanukkah with Rabbi David Greenspoon of Congregation Sha’are Shalom in Leesburg.

Waterskiing Santa

Dec. 24, 1 p.m.; Old Town Alexandria, VA Waterfront

A Christmas tradition since 1986, watch Santa waterski along the Potomac River between Old Town Alexandria and D.C. Enjoy this unusual event completed with flying elves, Frosty the Snowman and Christmas music!

Christmas at Mount Vernon

Through Dec. 31, 9 a.m.- 4 p.m.; Mount Vernon, VA

Visit George Washington’s estate during the Christmas season and see sparkling holiday decorations, tour the Mansion, learn about Virginia’s holiday traditions in the 18th century and watch historic chocolate-making demonstrations.

Holiday Fun at Reston Town Center

Through Dec. 31.; Reston Town Center, Reston, VA

Looking for multiple activities to do this holiday season? Reston Town Center is the perfect spot. Between ice-skating, gift shopping and carriage rides, Reston Town Center is a great place for a fun night out. Check out restontowncenter.com for specific events. 

Let your kids experience a little Christmas magic by spending the morning enjoying a tasty breakfast with Santa! Check the list below for a Santa Breakfast near you.


  • Dec. 8, Maggiano’s Little Italy Chevy Chase-DC, 8:45-11 a.m.
  • Dec. 8, Hard Rock Café, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.


  • Dec. 8, Greenbelt Volunteer Fire Department & Rescue Squad Greenbelt, MD, 8:30 a.m.-Noon
  • Dec. 15, Adventure Park USA, Monrovia, MD, 8-10 a.m.
  • Dec. 15, Roger W “Pip” Moyer Community Recreation Center Annapolis, MD, 9 a.m.-Noon
  • Dec. 16, Mt. Airy Volunteer Fire Company Reception Hall Mount Airy, MD, 7:30-11 a.m.


  • Dec. 1, Fairfax Volunteer Fire Department, Fairfax, VA 8-11 a.m.
  • Dec. 1, West Belmont Place, Leesburg, VA, 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Dec. 1,8,15 & 22, Salamander Resort & Spa, Middleburg, VA, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Dec. 1, The Carlyle Club, Alexandria, VA, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Dec. 2, Tysons Corner Center, McLean, VA, 8 a.m.-10 a.m.
  • Dec. 2, 1757 Golf Club, Dulles, VA, 10 a.m.
  • Dec. 2, Restoration Church, Reston, VA, 9 a.m.-11 p.m.

About WF Staff

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