Christmas events in the Heartland

Christmas events

You don’t have to go very far to have a bit of Falala and Christmas events these days. My grandkids determined Christmas spirit by the decorations a person had outside their house. We just have lighted wreaths, so I think they would probably find us lacking, but we sure have seen some fine display of holiday finesse around. Here is where we have found a bit of fun in the Midwest these past few weeks!

One way to celebrate Christmas events is find the decor downtown.

Downtown Christmas events!

Petula Clark’s song Downtown in particular, the lines, “The lights are much brighter there
You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares” were true when we hit downtown Springfield with friends Mark and Kelli for a tour of the lights and decorations. The downtown Christmas tree offered a great place to take pictures!

christmas events
Photo ops downtown Springfield.

With Festival of Trees reworked this year, when my friend Linda was in town for Thanksgiving, we took a quick gander at the Gingerbread houses in the windows of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum to get a look at them. Both views of downtown were fun, the Old State Capital was a favorite, it didn’t seem quite as festive as in the past, but we really enjoyed dining at the old Norb Andy’s that is now Anchor’s Away with Mark and Kelli. The food, heavy on the seafood, was good and great service!

Prelude to Christmas

Do you like to travel for the holidays? Sometimes a short trip can really put you in the Holiday mood! Most years will find us in Amana Colonies for the Prelude to Christmas. The Colonies historic buildings and fun activities set the mood for relaxing fun. My husband Keith and his brother Wayne in particular love this area. Keith loves the food and the antiques. We stay each year at Zubers Homestead, a historic hotel in Homestead, Iowa. The lovely guest rooms are homey and they have a wonderful breakfast each morning. The event happens the first weekend in December. We went this year and did a bit of shopping and brought back wonderful Amana meat as well.

My favorite event of the trip, besides spending time with family, was stopping at the Festhall barn that was filled with Christmas trees all decorated. In the background a band was playing music. This turn of the century barn was the perfect background to fill us with the Spirit of Christmas!

Christmas events
Our big find outside of Swedesburg, Iowa!

It was also wonderful to stop in a new church to celebrate the birth of Jesus. And of course I love finding new places to find on the way home. Our big find this year was the straw goat and Dala horse in Swedesburg, IA!

Girl’s Night Out Christmas Party

Do you have a group of friends you gather with? If so, seeing those friends and wishing them all a Merry Christmas just helps make the season bright!

Christmas events
Bobbi at her home!

Many years I don’t make this event put on by my mom’s friend Bobbi. She plans monthly get togethers for ladies and at the end of the year has a party at her beautifully decorated home. She swears this is the last year, we will see.

Local Christmas Decor

It doesn’t cost a dime besides a bit of gas to drive around and enjoy the local lights! I have been enjoying the local towns decorations. Whether you are talking the lights on the light poles, the nativity scenes or the lights on houses, this year they seem to be particularly festive.

The festive Carlinville, Illinois square

Yesterday, Keith and I headed out and visited some of the local town squares. Stopping for breakfast in Girard, Ilinois at the Redbird Cafe, I was delighted to find the Girard History Museum was open. This is a room off the Community Building and the museum was open because they were having breakfast with Santa. A sucker for St. Nickolas when I went to take his picture, he said to sit down, and I did! Who doesn’t want their picture taken with Santa?

Christmas eventes
Santa in Girard!

The museum is quite nice, if you have a local history museum, take the time to visit, it is always surprising what you will find. The Girard History Museum is open during local events.

Christmas Lights

It’s just not Christmas without taking a drive to see Christmas lights! This is something we typically do with the grandkids. This year we went to Taylorville, Illinois to see the light display in Manner’s Park, it was wonderful! We were amazed by the amount of exhibits they came up with! After the display we dined at Nesty’s a great burger stops, on the Taylorville square!

Christmas events
Lights in Taylorville.

These are just a few Christmas events to do in the Midwest, typical I know, but holiday fun to spread around! Let me know what you find to do in your neck of the woods!

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  1. Virginia Walker

    These all sound like wonderful places to visit and I know you would really enjoy the “Painting with Lights” in downtown Oskaloosa, IA

    1. Cindy

      With all the wonderful art places I saw last summer I am sure this would be an amazing event as well, thanks for bringing it to my radar! Of course when visiting I would want to book a stay at the beautiful Stone Mansion while I was there!