After you've gathered to give thanks and devoured the turkey, trimmings and pie, ring in the holiday season in Nisswa during their City of Lights festival on Friday, Nov. 2. Just a couple minutes south of the Whitefish Chain, this event is festive fun for all ages. Among the many festivities, you'll enjoy horse drawn wagon rides, storytelling, the arrival of Santa, and holiday fireworks!
The festivities start at 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29, with the lighting of the bonfires in town along the Paul Bunyan Trail and in the Nisswa Square. Note that Main St. in Nisswa will be shut down from 2 p.m. on between Big Axe Brewery and Main Street Ale House in order to make room for food vendors and more. Horse drawn carriage rides will also be carrying passengers through town from 2:30-7 p.m.
From its start, this event hits all the hallmarks of a holiday event. You can see live reindeer on the turtle track from 4-7 p.m. Listen to the storytelling of The Polar Express in the real train caboose on Main Street at 3:30, 4, 4:30 or 5 p.m. (seating is limited for each reading). Live carolers will perform at 5 in Nisswa Square. Eat free donuts and cider at 4:45 p.m., then join the luminary walk at 5 in the Pioneer Village. See the live nativity from 5-7 in the Pioneer Village.
Among the ways that you can join the celebration is the Love Lights a Tree celebration benefiting Good Samaritan. Donate $5 and have a light on the tree dedicated to your loved one. The names of the loved ones will be read at a ceremony in the Nisswa Pioneer Village at 5:45 p.m. Donors also receive a personalized ornament.
By 5:30 p.m. the whole city will be alight with strands of twinkling bulbs and stunning decorations. Santa will make his arrival in the gazebo at 6 p.m. (he'll be in the Nisswa Square Courtyard from 4-5:45 p.m.). The grand finale of the evening is a fireworks show at 7:30 p.m. Read the full schedule here. After Thanksgiving, the Christmas season kicks off in full. Start it off right at this fun family event.