Christmas 2020: Socially distant celebrations in St. Louis

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From socially distant storytimes with Santa to light displays, here are some ways to celebrate the season amid the pandemic

ST. LOUIS — Like most things this year, the Christmas season may look a little different due to the coronavirus pandemic.

St. Louisans may be looking for ways to celebrate the season at a distance to keep loved ones safe.

During Halloween, a few counties in the area released tips on how to celebrate safely and several events adapted to being socially distant and mask mandated.

Many Christmas events in the St. Louis area will also be adapting to those changes.

Here are some ways you can celebrate the season safely.

Saint Louis Zoo ‘Wild Lights’

The “Wild Lights” experience at the Saint Louis Zoo is back for the holiday season.

The event will be a little different this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Guests must register for a time slot when purchasing tickets.

The event will be held from 5-8:30 p.m. Nov. 27-Jan. 2. Select nights include: Nov. 27-29, Dec. 2-6, Dec. 9-23 and Dec. 26-Jan 2.

Two admission time slots will be available for each evening of lights. Guests must choose between the 5-6:30 p.m. and 6:30-8 p.m. slots.

Click here for information on pricing.

Winter Wonderland at Tilles Park

Winter Wonderland at Tilles Park is still happening this year, but with a few changes.

Guests will not be able to walk through the lights due to the rise in COVID-19 cases in the St. Louis area.

“We know this will come as an enormous disappointment, but we support the decision of our public health experts,” St. Louis County Parks wrote on Facebook.

If you had tickets for the walk through, MetroTix will contact you to issue full refunds.

Winter Wonderland will still be open to cars and carriage rides.

Click here for more details on the event.

Garden Glow

Garden Glow at the Missouri Botanical Garden will return this year with some changes due to COVID-19.

Guests will need to make reservations and capacity will be limited and social distancing safety protocols will be in place. Face masks will also be required for everyone age 9 or older.

“All interactive and high-touch points are being modified to reduce the amount of physical interaction,” a spokesperson told 5 On Your Side.

Garden Glow will be held from Nov. 11 – Jan. 2. Member preview nights are scheduled for Nov. 8-10. The gardens will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Click here for more information.

Wonderlight’s Christmas

Wonderlight’s Christmas, the largest synchronized holiday light show in the St. Louis area, will debut at World Wide Technology Raceway this month.

The show will run from Nov. 20 through Jan. 3. It will be open nightly, rain or shine, from dusk (around 5 p.m.) until 10 p.m. 

The show will be open on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Tickets for the show are $7 per person and a carload pass is available for $30 and includes up to seven passengers. Group pricing is also available.

Click here for more information.

Lot of Lights

The Family Arena is transforming into a ‘Lot of Lights’ this holiday season.

The drive-thru event will feature lasers, holograms, projection mapping and millions of lights.

The holiday show will be featured at the Family Arena from Nov. 27 through Jan. 2. Hours for the show are 5:30-10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 5:30-11 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Tickets for the show are $25 per car and will go on sale on Oct. 2.

Click here for more information.

‘A Christmas Carol’ virtual reading

Several St. Louis celebrities are coming together next month for a virtual reading of “A Christmas Carol.”

Metro Theater Company is offering the virtual event to help keep the community connected during a holiday season that has been “transformed by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

More than 25 “outstanding St. Louisans” will serve as the readers for the broadcast, each contributing excerpts on camera.

So far, the lineup includes:

  • Ellie Kemper, Emmy-nominated actress
  • Paul Goldschmidt, St. Louis Cardinals player
  • Judith Ivey, Tony Award-winning actress
  • John Mozeliak, St. Louis Cardinals president of baseball operations
  • Christine Brewer, Grammy Award-winning soprano
  • Ken Page, film, stage and voice actor
  • Aisha Sultan, columnist and St. Louis Post-Dispatch editor
  • Jamie Rahn, St. Louis-based American Ninja Warrior
  • Julius B. Anthony, president of the St. Louis Black Authors of Children’s Literature
  • Mark Levine, medical director for the St. Louis Fire Department

The virtual reading will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 10 and 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 13. The public can register for the event for free or make a donation.

Click here for more information.

Grant’s Farm

Grant’s Farm is hosting a drive-thru holiday event for the season.

Earlier this year, Grant’s Farm hosted a Halloween drive-thru event and organizers said it was a huge success.

“We wanted to continue the seasonal excitement for guests from St. Louis and the surrounding region by inviting them to experience the magic of Grant’s Farm during the holidays,” said Jeff Knapper, Director of Heritage at Anheuser-Busch.

The event will be held from Nov. 27 through Dec. 31. It will cost $40 per car.

Click here for details about the event.

Six Flags

Santa will be landing his sleigh at Six Flags St. Louis this season. 

Holiday in the Park is back this year with exclusive entertainment and tasty treats visitors can’t get any other time of the year.

“We’re decking the halls with twinkling lights, thrilling holiday rides and experiences even Scrooge will love.”

Holiday in the Park includes:

  • More than a million glowing lights
  • Gingerbread Village Snaps
  • Story time on the North Pole Train
  • Socially distanced photos with Santa

Holiday in the Park begins Nov. 21. Click here to make a reservation.

Holiday Magic

The Magic House will be hosting the “Holiday Magic” experience this year.

Families will be able to enjoy expanded hours, festive decorations, outdoor experiences and the opportunity to visit with Santa in his sleigh.

The experience will be held from Dec. 1-31. Reservations will be required for the event and there will be reduced capacity to ensure social distancing.

  • A life-size gingerbread village where kids will make pretend cookies, decorate gingerbread men and play gingerbread games
  • Snowball carnival where families will visit the museum’s front play garden where they can enjoy a variety of snowball-themed carnival games.

The experience will be extended into the evening with “Magical Nights,” a private time to enjoy a light display, storytime with Mrs. Claus, cookies and milk and photos with Santa in his “socially-distanced sleigh.” 

Magical Nights will take place from 5-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday nights in December.

Click here for more information.

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Editor is WebTech Group (WTG). WTG is a web hosting, design, SEO, press release distribution company and news agency located in St. Louis, Missouri. Site is owned and operate multiple news sites in the region. Our objective with is to offer readers a one-stop news site for Missouri news. We aggregate news from news media across the state. We do not aggregate news from all sources. We pick from those that offer RSS feeds and pick the best with eliminating those that might produce the same news stories, written differently.
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