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5 Holiday Happenings in the Mountains

A guide to spending the most wonderful time of the year in the high country



Photo courtesy of Visit Estes Park

For a quintessential snowy holiday season, what better place to get festive than the charming towns of the Mountain West? Snow is almost a guarantee and it's the perfect time of year to gather your loved ones and get ready to welcome a new year. 

From lighting the Christmas tree in Jackson Hole to strolling though Whitefish decked out for the holidays, here are 5 high country events to get you into the festive spirit. 

Jackson Hole Tree Lighting 

Friday November 22, 2019
Jackson, Wyoming


Photo courtesy of Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce

This favorite holiday event features music and holiday carols, the lighting of the Town Square and the arrival of Santa Claus into Jackson Hole. Thousands of LED bulbs will be wrapped around the famous elk antler arches and strung around the stately trees. The lighting of the Town Square is a breathtaking moment as the bulbs sparkle to life. 

Estes Park Christmas Parade

November 29, 2019
Estes Park, Colorado


Photo courtesy of Visit Estes Park

Walk off the turkey dinner from last night during the Catch the Glow Christmas Parade & Celebration in the Colorado town. With holiday music broadcast outdoors throughout the town helping set the scene, stroll around downtown and visit with Santa Claus at his workshop near Bond Park. The lighted Christmas parade begins at 5:30 pm and runs the length of Elkhorn Ave.

Whitefish Christmas Stroll

December 6, 2019
Whitefish, Montana


Photo by Peter Siudara Photographic

There really will be chestnuts roasting on an open fire in Whitefish this holiday season. Stop by The Village Shop to grab those tasty delights and then get in line to enjoy a wagon ride by Bar W Guest Ranch. Stroll along Central Ave and stop at any number of fire pits to warm up after checking out the festive window displays throughout town. Arts and crafts abound and local food vendors will be selling grub to warm your belly. 

Sun Valley Winter Wonderland

December 8 – 31, 2019
Sun Valley, Idaho

Throughout the month of December, Sun Valley will transform into a winter wonderland with festive activities galore. On Saturday, December 15, don't miss the Tree Lighting Ceremony in the Village starting at 5:30 pm, featuring Santa, live holiday music, ice carving demo, free cookies & hot cocoa and no-host outdoor bar. Before the tree glows, meander thought the Open-Air Holiday Market with everything from traditional wreaths to roasted nuts. 

Breckenridge New Year's Eve Fireworks

December 31, 2019 @ 9:00 pm
Breckenridge, Colorado


Photo by Arthur Balluff

Breckenridge is one of the coolest places to be in the Colorado Rockies on New Year’s Eve. Known for being laid-back and friendly, that holds true on one of the country’s biggest holidays. Whether you're looking for a stellar fireworks show, want to dance and have a romantic dinner or kiss that special someone at midnight, Breck is the spot to be to bring in the new year. 

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