It’s the most wonderful time of the year! That’s what Andy Williams proclaimed when this classic holiday jingle premiered in 1963. Well, we have to say that we agree with him. Christmas in South Bend is a wonderful time to visit. The whole town gets into the holiday spirit during December! Enjoy Christmas-themed shows at the Morris Performing Arts Center, ice skate under twinkling lights at Howard Park, and attend a variety of other holiday events in Downtown South Bend. When you’re not attending a local Christmas event, simply enjoy the scent of freshly cut pine trees and crisp winter air!
Read on to find out our favorite ways to spend the Christmas season in South Bend. Then, request a copy of our complimentary Vacation Guide! This resource is filled with recommendations on how to spend each season in South Bend like a local.
Top 3 Ways to Celebrate Christmas in South Bend
1. Catch a Holiday Show at the Morris Performing Arts Center
The Morris Performing Arts Center is the pinnacle of live entertainment in South Bend. Year-round, this venue hosts a variety of symphonies, concerts, and Broadway shows. However, seats fill up faster than ever during the Christmas season!
During December, you can expect a couple of Christmas favorites. This year, there are four chances to attend the classic ballet performance, The Nutcracker put on by the Southold Dance Theater. Or, attend South Bend’s dearly-held Christmas symphony extravaganza, Home for the Holidays. Tickets for these shows sell out quickly, so be sure to secure your tickets!
2. Get to Downtown South Bend for the Holidays
Each year, Downtown South Bend puts on Downtown for the Holidays. This month-long celebration features visits from Santa, a holiday parade, and more Christmas-themed events. Downtown for the Holidays makes the entire month of December feel like Christmas morning!
This year, Downtown for the Holidays commences on Dec. 6, 2019, and concludes on Christmas Eve. The first day of Downtown for the Holidays boasts a free concert by Laura Whidden and specials at local restaurants and shops. The full 2019 Downtown for the Holidays schedule has yet to be announced, but you can certainly expect staple events like the Gingerbread Village Contest, the Festival of Trees, and the Tree Lighting Ceremony & Santa’s Arrival.
3. Experience Howard Park’s First Holiday Season
This year, Howard Park’s grand opening is perhaps the most anticipated event of the holiday season! Howard Park is set to open Friday, Nov. 29, 2019, just in time for the Christmas season in South Bend. Here, guests can enjoy 16,000 square-feet of ice skating! Skate along the ice trail loop for a more challenging experience, or simply get your bearings on the ice pond. Enjoy ice skating seven days per week during the holiday season, including on Christmas Eve! Once you’re good and tired from ice skating, swing by the Chocolate Cafe Express for a piping hot cup of hot chocolate and a sweet treat.
Jingle All the Way to The Oliver Inn
Hang your stockings atop a different fireplace when you spend Christmas in South Bend. The Oliver Inn is the perfect spot to cozy up and enjoy the holiday season! Consider The Clem Studebaker guest room for your Christmas getaway. This large suite has a premium mattress fitted with luxury linens, a private bathroom with a clawfoot soaking tub, a jetted spa shower, a heated towel bar, and a gas fireplace. Enjoy hot, delicious breakfast each morning of your stay, too!