Guide to Denver Holiday Parades, Events, & Shows

The metro area activity calendars are full this time of year with tons of holiday parades, holiday events, and special holiday shows. We have a list of our favorites! Let us know if we’re missing something!


9News Parade of Lights – Denver

December 1st at 8pm & December 2nd | 6pm

The Downtown Denver Partnership invites you to join us for the 9NEWS Parade of Lights, presented by American Furniture Warehouse. The FREE parade features marching bands, ornate floats, and of course a special appearance by Major Waddles and Santa! Grab your hot chocolate and ear-muffs, this year is going to be better than ever! This year the parade will run on December 1st at 8pm and December 2nd at 6pm. You can view the parade anywhere along the route for free or purchase grandstand tickets.

Olde Golden Holiday Parade – Golden 

December 2nd, 9th, & 16th | 10:30am

Saturdays in December, authentic and historic downtown Golden becomes a festive holiday center with traditional decorations and fun family events. The free Olde Golden Christmas Parade starts at 10:30 a.m. with cowboys on horses, floats, marching bands, old cars, elves on unicycles, the Grinch in his corvette, and of course, Santa Claus.  The parade winds down Washington Avenue with lots of activities before and after including snappy barbershop quartets, hot cider, Victorian carolers, and antique fire trucks. Presented by the Golden Chamber of Commerce.  *Rain, snow, or shine*

Lights of December Parade – Boulder

December 2nd | 6pm

In its 30th year, spectators will enjoy floats created and decorated by local businesses, churches and civic groups. Crowds will enjoy marching bands, lit fire engines, holiday carolers and much more. The grand finale includes an appearance by the jolly old man himself – Santa Claus!

Catch the Glow Parade – Estes Park

November 24th

The 29th Annual “Catch the Glow” Parade will brighten downtown Estes Park the day after Thanksgiving – Friday, November 24, 2017.
Each year as many as 20,000 people line Elkhorn Avenue to “Catch the Glow” of this whimsical holiday parade, as well as spend the afternoon visiting Santa and strolling through downtown Estes Park. The parade features more than 40 units, including hand crafted floats from the Town of Estes Park and nonprofits, marching bands, fire trucks and other specialty vehicles.

Greeley Lights the Night Parade – Greeley

November 25th | 5pm

A don’t miss this holiday season the city of Greeley’s Lights the Night holiday parade! There are over fifty lighted floats that make their way through Downtown Greeley.

Longmont Lights – Longmont

December 8th and 9th | 5pm

From ancient time, light has been both a source of mystery and magic, providing necessary warmth and guidance. Enjoy the mystery and magic of millions of sparkling lights and the sights and sounds of winter holiday celebrations as Longmont Lights continues with special activities in Roosevelt Park Dec. 8 and 9. There will be fireworks following the parade on Friday. 

2017 Christmas Carriage Parade – Parker 

December 9th | 12pm

The Parker Christmas Carriage Parade is a valued tradition held annually in downtown Parker in celebration of the holiday season. The Town of Parker and the Colorado Driving Society present this exciting event on the second Saturday of December each year and the parade is free to attend. Come and experience that holiday feeling in the air and enjoy this all-equestrian parade made up of dozens of horse-drawn carriages, wagons, surreys and stagecoaches from across Colorado, all dressed up for the occasion. Event-goers also enjoy a holiday farmer’s market, a petting zoo and pony rides, ice sculpting and visiting time and pictures with Mr. and Mrs. Claus! Ice Sculpting, the petting zoo and pony rides will begin at 10:30am.


Denver Pavilions Holiday Carousel 

December 15 – January 2nd | 11am – 9pm 

Get into the holiday spirit by taking a ride on Downtown’s 1st & only Holiday Carousel. Due to popular demand, the carousel has been extended through the new year, with NEW YEAR’S EVE RIDES! So rekindle some of that childhood magic at Denver Pavilions. $3 per ride or FREE w/ a voucher from any Denver Pavilions merchant.
A portion of proceeds goes to Food Bank for the Rockies.

Holiday’s Evening at the Littleton Museum – Littleton 

December 10 | 5:30pm

Join the Friends of the Littleton Library and Museum family for the most festive time of the year. Take delight in the smell of warm apple cider, cinnamon, cookies, and evergreens, while twinkling luminaries brighten the crisp December night air. Take a hay ride through the fields for a fresh perspective of the farms, while you snuggle with your favorite rosy-cheeked buddy.

Highlands Ranch Holiday Celebration 

December 2nd | 10am – 3pm

Celebrate at the Highlands Ranch Mansion with entertainment, games, performances, hay rides, vendors, and a special visit from Santa Claus.

Olde Golden Christmas

 December 3 – December 31

Historic downtown Golden will feature Victorian carolers, performances, visits with Santa, Newfoundland cart rides, parades, breakfast and photos with Santa, and holiday lights along the downtown area. Don’t miss Golden’s awe-inspiring Candlelight Walk!


Denver Center of Performing Arts

Denver Center of Performing Arts has a number of seasonal shows throughout November and December that make for a great family holiday outing. Here are some of the upcoming holiday shows:

A Christmas Carol – November 24th – December 24th
The SantaLand Diaries – November 24th – December 24th
Elf the Musical  – December 13th – 17th

The Nutcracker

November 25th – December 24th 

Don’t miss this amazing classic holiday show, presented by the Colorado Ballet! The Nutcracker is sure to make Christmas magic come alive! 

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