Winterfest Kicks off a Season Filled with City Wide Holiday Celebrations

(Cleveland, OH) - Family-friendly events begin with the holiday tree lighting in Public Square on Saturday, November 27th and continues with festive offerings across the city center.

Downtown Cleveland Alliance invites Clevelanders to experience Winterfest, the official start to the holiday season. 

Festivities begin at 12:00 p.m. and include entertainment, carriage rides, games and ice skating, and more free activities from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. including a visit from Santa Claus and a fireworks finale. 

Winterfest programming is made possible through the support of Bedrock Cleveland, Downtown Cleveland Alliance, Cleveland Public Power, United Rentals and a host of other sponsors. 

Following the main event and all season long, a robust schedule of activities will take place through the month of February from University Circle to Public Square. For the most up-to-date happenings, please visit

WINTERFEST 2021 HIGHLIGHTS - Saturday, November 27 (with approximate start times):


oCarriage Rides + Concessions (located at US Bank Plaza in Playhouse Square) – Advance

ticket reservations will be required 

oGames in the Slick Woody’s Family Fun Zone on US Bank Plaza 

oIce Skating on Cleveland Public Square 

oFood trucks on Cleveland Public Square 

oPhotos with Santa on the RTA Holly Jolly Trolley

oMr. Jingeling Meet and Greets at the Halle Building presented by The K&D Group  

oTake-n-Make Crafts, Ice Sculpting and more fun at the Cleveland Public Library


oLiving History Holiday Edition - Apartment Tours


oFire pits and S’Mores Kits presented by JACK Entertainment  

oWinter warm up activities with ASCEND Fitness and Spa 

oCarillon Concerts at Old Stone Church 

oSpecial appearances by Mr. Kringle, the Toy Soldier and friends 

oCAVS All for Fun Tour Trailer, photo opportunities and more! 


oWinterfest dance party with DJ Shake 

oHoliday Tree Lighting Ceremony broadcast in partnership with WKYC featuring Case in

        Point, Cleveland Ballet, Karamu House, Santa Claus, special guests and fireworks

       finale at 7:30pm


Mr. Kringle’s Suite – Hilton Cleveland Downtown  

Nov. 12th – Jan. 9th

With two sparkling Christmas trees, room decorations, and holiday-themed furniture, you can listen to merry melodies, read holiday stories, watch your favorite Christmas movies in Mr. Kringle's luxurious wonderland. Reserve your spot today.  

A Garden Holiday at the Cleveland Botanical Garden

Nov. 20th – Jan. 2nd

Visitors will be surrounded by beautiful holiday plants and trees from evergreen conifers to poinsettias at A Garden Holiday. On Dec. 12th – 19th, be sure to enjoy breakfast with Santa at the Botanical Garden. 

Cleveland Foundation Skating Rink in Cleveland Public Square

Nov. 26th- Jan. 17th

Bring the entire family to the Square to ice skate in Downtown Cleveland’s premier outdoor space. Pre-purchased timed tickets are available. 

Winter RiverFest at Merwin's Wharf

Nov. 26th – Jan. 2nd

Visit Rivergate Park and Merwin’s Wharf to see festive light displays, a beer garden, retail shops and an ice rink. Guests can also reserve a private igloo for a meal on the patio of Merwin’s Wharf. 

Mrs. Kringle’s Suite at Hotel Indigo

Nov. 12th – Jan 10th

Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown debuts the Mrs. Kringle Suite for guests to book - lavishly furnished with festive Christmas decor, a letter from Mrs. Kringle, cookies and milk, holiday movies, and specialty robes.  

Holiday Events at The Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland

Gingerbread House Village: Nov. 26th – Jan. 1st

Teddy Bear Tea: Dec. 21st – Dec. 22nd

Christmas Eve Dinner: Dec. 24th

Holiday Tea: Dec. 28th – Dec. 29th

For event information and availability, please contact the hotel at (216) 623-1300 or visit

Holidays at the Higbee

Nov. 27th – Jan. 1st

JACK Cleveland Casino decks the halls of the historic Higbee building with fun and festive decor. 

Living History: Holiday Edition

Nov. 27th: 3:00PM

Guided tours will lead you down Euclid Avenue to view four luxurious apartments in four iconic properties; Residences at HalleThe Residences at 668The May, and the new The Terminal Tower Residences, while enjoying a guided historic Cleveland tour. The last stop features the Observation Deck in Terminal Tower overlooking Public Square where you will enjoy dessert, cocktails and cocoa! 

RTA Holly Jolly Trolley and Holiday Trains

Nov. 27th: 12:00PM – 8:00PM

Don’t miss the RTA Holly Jolly Trolley featuring Santa on board for an immersive holiday experience. Follow the red, green, and blue line holiday trains around town as they travel throughout Cleveland all season long.

Meet Mr. Jingeling at the Halle Building

Nov. 27th and Dec 4th: 12:00PM – 6:00PM

Usher in the holiday season with a bit of Cleveland magic as The K&D Group brings Mr. Jingeling for meet-and-greets in the Halle Building. A cultural icon that has been unlocking imaginations since 1956, Mr. Jingeling bestows magical keys to all he meets.

Winter Warmers at the Key Bank Pavilion

Nov. 27th: 10:00AM – 9:00PM

Head to the Key Tower pavilion on Mall A to warm up around firepits while enjoying a hot cocoa station and cash bar. Fire pits will be on all day with a cocoa and cash bar opening at 3:00 p.m. 

Winterfest at the Library – Cleveland Main Library

Nov. 27th

Visit Cleveland Public Library for free family Winterfest activities! 

              12:00 - 3:00 PM - Reindeer Farm 

2:00 - 4:00 PM - Winter Ice Sculpting 

3:30 - 4:30 PM - Take-n-Make Crafts

Toy Soldier Show - Cleveland Public Library- Main Branch (Louis Stokes Wing) 

                 Nov. 27th: 5:00-5:30 PM and 6:00–6:30 PM

The Toy Soldier is a Cleveland treasure who has touched the hearts of thousands of families. Join him this Winterfest at the Cleveland Public Library and be a part of this cherished event. 

Light it Up! at Allen Theatre, Playhouse Square

Nov. 27th – Dec. 22nd

Light It Up! the musical, features original pop, rock, gospel, and jazz holiday tunes and new arrangements of Christmas favorites by Tony Award winning composer Jason Michael Webb. For tickets, please visit here.  

Carillon Concerts and Christmas Eve Services at Old Stone Church

Nov. 27th: 4:00PM – 8:00PM

Dec. 24th: 4:00PM – 10:00PM

Usher in the holiday downtown at Old Stone Church’s Christmas Eve Services at 4:00 p.m., 6:00 p.m., or 9:00 p.m.

Downtown CLE Christmas Walking Tours

Nov.28th – Dec. 26th: 4:00PM – 7:00PM

See Cleveland Christmas historical delights like Higbee's Twigbee Shop, Halle Bros. Mr. Jingeling and the Sterling-Lindner Christmas tree! Tickets are $20, and reservations are available at   

Langston Hughes Black Nativity at Karamu House

Dec. 2nd – Dec. 23rd

Karamu Players offers “the Gospel Song-Play” known as the Black Nativity. Designed for you to add the music of your choice (from spirituals to traditional carols or your original compositions) and dance, this thrilling holiday piece will have your audiences on their feet!  

Cleveland Ballet's The Nutcracker at Playhouse Square

Dec. 3rd – Dec. 5th

Not to be missed - the Cleveland Ballet’s magical production of The Nutcracker returns to Playhouse Square's Connor Palace with 5 performances.  

Ice Skating and Circle Fest at University Circle

Dec. 3rd – Feb. 21st

Skate on the circle at the University Circle Ice Rink from December 3 through President’s Day weekend. Circle Fest will also feature music, carriage rides, art and free museum admission on December 5, 2021.  

Santa Paws at Haymarket Pet Company

Dec. 4th: 12:00PM – 3:00PM

Snap a photo of your leashed furry friends with Santa! Santa Paws will be at Haymarket Pet Company in Suite 36 of the 5th Street Arcades.  

Cleveland Carolers

Dec. 4th – Dec. 11th: 1:00PM – 3:00PM

Enjoy carolers from this local favorite on the Cleveland Public Square ice rink. 

Cleveland Public Library Storytime and Hot Chocolate with Santa

(Saturdays) Dec. 4th – Dec. 18th: 2:00PM – 4:00PM

Cozy up on Public Square to hear a holiday story from the Cleveland Public Library. Meet Santa and enjoy hot chocolate on December 4, 11 and 18, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. 

Santa in the Square

(Saturdays) Dec. 4th – Dec. 18th: 2:00PM – 4:00PM

Visit Santa Claus in Public Square on Saturdays and Sundays! Santa will be waiting to hear your winter wishes near the Moses Cleveland Statue.  

Cuyahoga Valley Church Choir

Dec. 4th: 7:00PM – 9:00PM

Enjoy music from this local group at the skating rink in Cleveland Public Square. 

Wicked at Playhouse Square

Dec. 8th – Jan. 2nd

The untold true story of the Witches of Oz—transfixes audiences with its wildly inventive musical that will make you laugh, cry, and think.  

Cleveland Opera Theatre Performance at Playhouse Square

Dec. 10th – Dec. 17th

Experience live performances from the Cleveland Opera Theater near Public Square.  

Bright Lights, Reading Nights at Cleveland Public Library

Dec. 10th: 6:00PM – 8:30PM

Take in stories, hot cocoa, mochas, and popcorn with special guest hosts and more in the Eastman Reading Garden. 

Rock of Ages Church Choir

Dec. 11th: 4:00PM – 5:00PM

The Rock of Ages Church Choir will be performing their greatest hits in Public Square. Get ready to rock out, Cleveland! 

Christian Heritage Assembly of God Choir

Dec. 11th: 6:00PM – 7:00PM

Enjoy music from this local group near the ice rink in Public Square. 

Meet Scuba Claus

Dec. 18th – Dec. 22nd: 8:30AM – 7:00PM

See Scuba Claus during special meet and greet days at the Greater Cleveland Aquarium.  

#WinterfestCLE at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Dec. 18th: 10:00AM – 10:00PM

The Rock Hall is hosting a fun holiday-themed event with live music from Ohio City Singers, festive food & beverage options, fun photo opportunities, merch specials for last-minute holiday gift shopping and more! 

Cleveland Institute of Music Choir

Dec. 18th: 3:00PM – 4:00PM

Listen to music from this local group near the skating rink in Cleveland Public Square.  

Cleveland Browns vs. Las Vegas Raiders

Dec. 19th

Kick off your holiday week with a win at First Energy Stadium! Dog Pound Drive will have holiday themed music, games and more!  

Heinen’s Rotunda Performance

Dec. 22nd: 12:00PM – 1:00PM

The Singing Angels will perform holiday music during lunch in the historic rotunda. Come eat lunch and get into the holiday spirit!  

Trans-Siberian Orchestra at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse

Dec. 30th: 3:00PM + 8:00PM

The Winter Tour is back for 2021! A portion of every ticket sold benefits St. Augustine Hunger Center compliments of 98.5 WNCX, Minute Men HR, Live Nation and Trans-Siberian Orchestra.  

Winter Reading Challenge: Read for a Better World! 

January 1 - February 28, 2022  

Join our Winter Reading Challenge, "Read for a Better World!" for a chance to win cool prizes!Sponsored by Lerner Publishing Group. For more information on all our holiday offerings, visit

Ice Fest at North Coast Harbor

Jan. 17th: 11:00AM – 5:00PM

Commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with more than 40 ice sculptures, live carving demos, a family craft zone, and free hot cocoa. This year’s Fest will feature a Harry Potter Ice Sculpture village and other exciting ice sculptures. 

The Taste of Black Cleveland – The Real Black Friday at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse

Feb. 12th 

Visit and support a variety of Black-owned and operated eateries for a special event at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse 

The Real Black Friday at Tower City Center

Feb 19th

Visit and support 100 Black-owned businesses from northeast Ohio.  

Brite Winter

Feb. 26th

Discover music, art, fire and fun at Brite Winter in Downtown Cleveland. 

For the most up-to-date information regarding Winterfest in Downtown Cleveland including holiday experiences, dining, and retail opportunities, please visit

(Copyright, iHeartMedia, 2021)

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