With the holiday season just around the corner, Westerville, Ohio, is getting ready to turn into a magical winter wonderland. From charming boutiques to sparkling light displays, there's something for everyone to enjoy. In this blog post, we'll take you on a tour of the festive holiday fun that makes Westerville a perfect destination for celebrating the most wonderful time of the year.
Shop 'Til You Drop
For the shopping enthusiast, Westerville is a dream come true, especially during the holiday season. Stroll through the historic brick streets of Uptown Westerville, where you'll discover a treasure trove of boutique shops, unique finds, local Ohio gear, antique stores, and delicious treats. Whether you're searching for big gifts or stocking stuffers, Uptown Westerville has you covered. You might even find something to add to your own wish list! Don't miss the Ugly Sweater Snack & Stroll event on December 10 from 12-4 p.m. Enjoy free treats while finishing up your last minute shopping. Of course, a DORA holiday cocktail always adds an extra bit of fun to your experience! Additionally, be on the lookout for Santa and Mrs. Claus this day, as they will be strolling through Uptown spreading holiday cheer!
Uptown Westerville Sparkles
Starting from November 24 and throughout the holiday season, Uptown Westerville will come alive with the enchanting glow of Frasier Fir trees, adorned with lights and red bows. Take a leisurely stroll through the historic streets from dusk till dark and witness these beautiful trees casting a warm, sparkling light over the area. It's a scene right out of a holiday postcard.
Annual Tree Lighting & Holiday Celebration
Join in the festivities on Dec 1st as Westerville celebrates the season with the annual tree lighting at City Hall at 7 p.m. A short parade (with Santa!) will take place prior at 6:30 p.m. The parade will start at Home St. and end in front of City Hall. Uptown Westerville merchants will stay open late for holiday shopping and visitors can grab a seasonal beverage to sip on while they shop from one of Uptown Westerville’s many participating DORA (Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area) establishments. You can also enjoy hot chocolate, popcorn and holiday tunes while you shop. Be sure to stop by Birdie Books for their Holiday Bazaar from 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. or grab tickets to the Westerville Symphony’s Sounds of the Season concert happening at 8 p.m. at Otterbein University’s Fritsche Theatre. A live tree lot with fresh cut trees and wreaths will be located on E. Main St. and visitors may even spot Santa and his reindeer walking around Uptown!
Ice Sculpture Tour
On December 15th, the Westerville Uptown Merchants Association will host their 10th Annual Ice Sculpture Tour. Gather the family and meander through the Uptown streets to enjoy this mesmerizing event. The sculptures are an absolute delight and add a touch of winter wonder to the holiday season. But remember, these icy masterpieces won't last forever, so don't wait too long to witness their frozen beauty! All ice sculptures will be displayed starting at 5 p.m. and will remain until they melt.
Progressive Christmas Concert
Organized by the Westerville Habitat Partnership, this annual walking event stops for concerts at each of the three Uptown Westerville churches - Church of the Master, Church of the Messiah, and First Presbyterian Church - all within a block of each other. Participants are led by costumed guides with lanterns to each church to enjoy a short concert. It's the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. Learn more and purchase tickets.
Letters to Santa
Starting just after Thanksgiving and continuing through Christmas, head to Rotary Mini Park in Uptown Westerville (located at the corner of N. State & Home St.) for a festive family experience. Capture the perfect holiday photo in a beautifully illuminated setting and then write and send your letters to Santa, ensuring they arrive just in time for Christmas. It's a tradition that will warm your heart.
Outdoor Adventures in Winter
Winter in Westerville isn't just about shopping and holiday lights. Embrace the chilly weather and explore the city's parks and trails:
- Go for a winter hike or bike ride.
- Birdwatch and appreciate the beauty of wildlife.
- Take in the scenic views of the Hoover Reservoir, which is even more enchanting when draped in snow.
- For the little adventurers, the sledding hills at Alum Creek Park North & South promise endless thrills as children dash down the slopes.
Discover the beauty of Westerville's outdoor spaces illuminated in all their holiday glory:
- At Inniswood Metro Gardens, starting in December, witness the enchanting "Inniswood Illuminated" as the gardens come alive with light displays after dark.
- Everal Barn & Homestead at Heritage Park offers a stunning backdrop for beautiful scenery and holiday lights that will leave you spellbound.
- Stroll through the picturesque campus of Otterbein University to see stunning oak trees amidst historic brick buildings, making it a scenic winter wonderland.
"It's a Wonderful Westerville" is more than just a catchy phrase; it's a promise that Westerville, Ohio, delivers on during the holiday season. From shopping in charming boutiques to enjoying sparkling light displays and taking part in heartwarming traditions, Westerville offers a festive escape for all. So, plan your visit to this enchanting city and immerse yourself in the magic of the season. Westerville welcomes you with open arms and twinkling lights!