IEI’s hometown of Nashville knows how to celebrate! This holiday season, check out some of the many opportunities to experience American holiday traditions, from Christmas and Hanukkah to Winter Solstice and Kwanzaa. And in Music City, New Year’s Eve wouldn’t be complete without an all-star concert and fireworks! Read on and find your own ways to enjoy the season.
- Through January 1 – A Country Christmas – Walk through the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and admire its famous Christmas decorations, with over 2 million lights inside and outside. Ice slides, snow tubing, and many rides, games, and musical show are also on the resort grounds. Gaylord Opryland Resort. Free to see decorations; ticket prices vary for other activities.
- Through January 1 – Holiday LIGHTS at Cheekwood – Enjoy over a millions lights decorating Nashville’s historic Cheekwood botanical garden, and meet a couple of Santa’s reindeer! Cheekwood. Adults $20; ages 3-17 $15; ages 2 and under free; parking $5.
- Through January 1 – The Dancing Lights of Christmas is Middle Tennessee’s largest drive-through Christmas light and music show. 5:00-10:00 p.m. Sun.-Thur. & 5:00-1-:00 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Jellystone Park campground. $25 per vehicle.
- Various dates through December 23 – Nashville’s Nutcracker is Nashville Ballet’s annual production of this famous holiday ballet. Tennessee Performing Arts Center. $34-98; buy tickets in advance.
- December 10 – Music City Winterfest offers local artisans selling handmade holiday gifts, food trucks, a beer garden, local musicians, and kids’ activities. Centennial Park. 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Free.
- December 18 – Hanukkah Festival 2016 is a local celebration of the Jewish holiday with a kosher dinner of delicious traditional foods and music. Gordon Jewish Community Center. 4:30-7:00 p.m. $10, $30 maximum per family.
- December 21 – The Winter Solstice Hike (registration required) is followed by a Winter Solstice celebration (1:30-3:30 p.m.) with crafts, story-telling, and s’mores. Winter Solstice in the shortest day of the year.12:30-1:30 p.m., Shelby Bottoms Nature Center. Free.
- December 26 – The Kwanzaa Nashville Umoja Concert features performances from the Sankofa African Drum and Dance Company of Tennessee. The concert kicks off Kwanzaa , a seven-day a celebration of African-American heritage and community principles. 7:00-10:00 p.m., Nashville School of the Arts. $10.
- December 31 – Come to Jack Daniel’s Music City Midnight: New Year’s Eve in Nashville for a huge free concert featuring Keith Urban and Styx, plus a “Music Note Drop” and fireworks at midnight. Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. Free.