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Published: December 2, 2019

It’s a wonderful life in and around Oberlin this time of year. The area is packed with holiday light displays, concerts and other festivities, both indoors and out. Make plans before your calendar fills up - add a few of the events below to your list.

Holiday Music and More in Oberlin 


Santa has to eat, too, so join him for breakfast on Saturday, Dec. 7, at 9 a.m. at the Hotel at Oberlin. There will be a special children's à la carte menu, along with carolers, crafts and hot chocolate. Call 440-775-7001 for reservations. 

On Friday, Dec. 13, the annual “Empty Mugs Holiday Brass and Organ Concert” will be held at the First Church in Oberlin. The concert is free, but there will be an auction and pottery sale benefitting Oberlin Community Services. The concert begins at 7 p.m.

On Saturday, Dec. 14, head downtown to shop and sing along with our very own Kendal Karolers. The carolers will be out and about during the noon hour. 

Later that day, at 7:30 p.m., the Oberlin Choristers will host their annual “Songs for the Season” in Finney Chapel. The group is a community-based choral program for children in kindergarten through high school. 

Enjoy traditional tunes and new favorites by una voce musica, Bella Musica, and Cantate Musica. The concert will close with the traditional “Night of Silence.” Tickets are $9 to $11. 

The following night, head back to Finney Chapel for the annual Handel’s Messiah Sing-Along at 7 p.m. The Dec. 15 concert is presented by Credo Music, Oberlin Conservatory and the Oberlin Office of Religious and Spiritual Life. The concert is free with donations to benefit the Haven Center homeless shelter in Lorain. 


Metro Parks Make Merry


Lorain County Metro Parks goes all-out for the holidays with events scheduled at a number of parks. Enjoy visits from Santa, gingerbread house and nature ornament workshops, a ½-mile paved loop of holiday lights with entertainment, and more. For more details, check out the park’s bi-monthly newsletter, “Arrowhead.” 

Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” will be performed at French Creek Theatre on various dates between Dec. 6-22. 

An Old-Fashioned Holiday will be held Dec. 7 and Dec. 8 at the Vermilion River Reservation. Enjoy an 1860s reenactment in the Benjamin Bacon House with over 20 costumed actors throughout the home. Tickets are free but must be picked up a free ticket from the Carriage Barn front desk. Groups of eight or more may call 440-967-7310 to pre-register for tickets. The event includes horse-drawn carriage rides, hearthside cooking demonstrations and live holiday music. 

Finally, the Stocker Arts Center at Lorain County Community College features a number of holiday events: chorale concerts, “A Christmas Cabaret,” and “Home for the Holidays, a Big Band Christmas.” For times, dates and prices visit the website or call 440-366-4040.


Cleveland is Decked Out, Too


Lolly the Trolley is ready for the season with tours of two holiday attractions. 

The first is a tour to the Christmas Story House, museum and gift shop.

“Filmed partially in Cleveland and released in 1983, the story of Ralphie Parker and his Red Ryder 200-shot Carbine Action Air Rifle comes to life on this nostalgic tour. The tour includes admission to the Christmas Story House (lovingly renovated and furnished to match the movie) and the separate museum and gift shop,” according to the trolley website.

The other tour is “Silver Bells,” which includes a drive by the famous house and views of Tremont and downtown. 

For tour dates and costs, visit the Lolly the Trolley website or call 800-848-0173.

Enjoy the downtown lights and other seasonal attractions on foot, or rather on skates. The Cleveland Foundation Skating Rink is open in Public Square through Feb. 29, 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. Tickets are $7 per skater plus $3 for skate rental and can be ordered online.

The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo has been transformed into Wild Winter Lights, featuring more than 1 million lights and a dozen diverse and interactive zones, including the zoo’s version of the Northern Lights. 

The evening extravaganza runs through Jan. 5. Visit the zoo’s website or call 216-661-6500 for more information. 


Check Out All that Oberlin Has to Offer

From dining and cultural attractions to architecture and beautiful green spaces, you’ll find it all in Oberlin. 

Download your free copy of our guide to the best of Oberlin and discover local restaurants, shopping, and other gems to explore.


Oberlin, a Great Place to Call Home

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Molly-KIn the past, Molly Kavanaugh frequently wrote about Kendal at Oberlin for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, where she was a reporter for 16 years. Now we are happy to have her writing for the Kendal at Oberlin Community.