As the holiday season nears, Cleveland, Ohio offers unique experiences for people of all ages to enjoy. Seniors and their loved ones can keep busy during the cold winter months and celebrate the merriest time of year with activities ranging from symphonies and musicals to tree lightning ceremonies, all without traveling too far.
Continue reading for a list of nine noteworthy activities for seniors, grandkids and family members of all ages in the Cleveland region this holiday season. Listed in order of event date.
1. Glow: Cleveland
Delight at the decorative trees or marvel at the whimsical gingerbread houses at Cleveland Botanical Garden’s winter spectacular, Glow. With full access to the gardens, take a train ride on the Garden Express or take a break and listen to live holiday music with a cup of cocoa in hand. No matter the activity, this is sure to become a favorite holiday tradition.
Entry Price: $16.00 Adults; $12.00 Children (Ages 3-12); Free (Ages 2 and under)
Event Details: November 24 – December 31. Times vary. Located at the Cleveland Botanical Gardens, 11030 East Boulevard, Cleveland, Ohio.
2. ChurchLights: Middleburg Heights
Discover the ChurchLights experience at Pleasant Hills in Middleburg Heights this holiday season. Seniors are invited to attend a minimized strobe light display on Thursday, December 7 from 1-3 p.m. The indoor event will feature a more accessible display for members of the community.
In addition, families and more mobile seniors are welcome to visit ChurchLights on the Lawn every evening from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day. The two-and-half-hour experience is said to be “one of three must-see Christmas light displays in the Cleveland area.” Visitors are welcome to come and go throughout the show. For a complete list of special events, click here.
Entry Price: Free
Event Details: December 7, 1 – 3 p.m. Located at 13200 East Bagley Road, Middleburg Heights, Ohio.
3. Jolly Storytime Trolley: Cleveland
Take the grandkids on Lolly the Trolley for a special holiday story time tour around town. Hosted by the Cleveland Public Library, seniors and their grandkids can listen to The Polar Express while ringing bells and sipping hot cocoa. Seniors can enjoy the sights of the city from the comfort of the trolley.
Entry Price: Free
Event Details: December 7, 4:00 – 4:30 p.m. Located at 4421 West 140 Street, Cleveland, Ohio.
4. A Christmas Celebration: Elyria
Ring in the holidays with a musical event by the 90-member Patriots Symphonic Band. From Greensleeves to Sleigh Ride, listen to all your favorite holiday carols and concert pieces. And, a discounted ticket price is available for seniors ages 65 and older (see below).
Entry Price: $12.00 Adults; $10.00 Seniors; $6.00 Students; Free Children (Ages 12 and under)
Event Details: December 9, 7:30 p.m. Located at Hoke Theater, 1005 North Abbe Road, Elyria, Ohio.
5. Falala Christmas Village: Avon, Fairview Park, North Royalton and Twinsburg
Make memories at Falala Christmas Village this year. With seven interactive story cabins, a petting zoo and pictures with Santa, this event is a great way for seniors to experience the holiday season with grandkids. Young and old visitors will experience the true magic of the holidays as they walk through a wintery village. From puppets to a cast of singers and storytellers, seniors are able to enjoy hot chocolate and cookies during performances while children play.
Entry Price: Free
Event Details: December 10-22. Locations and times vary.
6. Nutcracker Suite: Cleveland
Celebrate the holidays with the popular ballet, the Nutcracker Suite. This event is suitable for audiences of all ages and handicap accessible seating is available. Join the Cleveland Ballet at Playhouse Square as it transports you on an adventure through the imagination of a young girl’s journey around the world.
Entry Price: $25.00 - $45.00
Event Details: December 15-16, various times. Located at Playhouse Square, 1501 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio.
7. Pancakes and Pictures with Santa: Westlake
Grab the grandkids and spend your morning at the first annual Pancakes and Pictures with Santa. Enjoy a delicious pancake breakfast, followed by pictures with Santa. This indoor event is handicap and wheelchair accessible.
Entry Price: $10.00 Adults; $5.00 Children (ages three and under are free)
Event Details: December 17, 9 a.m. – noon. Located at Holiday Inn Express & Suites, 30500 Clemens Road, Westlake, Ohio.
8. A Celtic Christmas: Parma Heights
Enjoy an afternoon of traditional Irish music, dance, song and story with the cast of Tomaseen Foley’s A Celtic Christmas and the Parma Symphony. Whether with family or friends, celebrate the season with the ones you love.
Entry Price: $10.00 - $20.00
Event Details: December 17, 3 – 4 p.m. Located at Valley Forge High School Auditorium, 9999 Independence Boulevard, Parma Heights, Ohio.
9. Painting With a Twist: Avon
Create lasting memories with friends and family at Painting With a Twist, a casual painting studio. Designed for all ages and skills levels, Painting With a Twist is a great place to discover your inner artist and create hand-painted gifts for your loved ones this holiday. Plus, the studio offers a number of upcoming holiday events.
Entry Price: $35.00
Event Details: Times vary. Located at 36840 Detroit Road, Avon, Ohio.
Get Access to Even More Holiday Ideas
Cleveland, Ohio offers a variety of opportunities for seniors to stay active this holiday season. And, as you continue to celebrate the season with your loved ones, remember to engage in meaningful conversation. Download our free resource, “Busch’s Essential Guide to Meaningful Conversation” for 20+ conversation-starting questions to ask your loved ones this holiday season.
Note: This post was originally published in December 2015, and has been updated for 2017.
Image credit: Pixabay