Temperatures are dropping, leaves are changing, and the holiday season is coming sooner than you think! It’s almost that wonderful time of the year when we gather with friends and family to cherish everything we’re thankful for. Out of town relatives come to visit, kids are off school, and you’re looking for ways to get everyone out of the house! Making new memories with your loved ones will create funny and noteworthy stories that will last a lifetime. Whether it’s running a 5k race or riding a magical train, there are plenty of fun (mostly) outdoor events near Briargate that the whole family will love!

Vintage Market Days – November 16-18

Ready to shop til you drop? Vintage Market Days is calling your name! Get ready for an upscale, vintage-inspired market, similar to a flea market but SO much better. Artistic vendors gather outdoors and indoors to display their original artwork, antiques, clothing, jewelry, decor, baked goods, plants, and so much more! Come out and support local artists and find one-of-a-kind Christmas presents while you’re at it. General admission is $5, children under 12 are free.

Santa Express Train – November 16 – December 30

All aboard! Come and experience the magical train that takes you straight to the North Pole to meet the big guy himself…Santa Claus! Children of all ages are welcomed to wear their coziest pajamas and relax with their family and friends as they ride through a winter wonderland. Along the way, there will be plenty of entertainment, Christmas songs, locally sourced entrees (for an extra fee), hot cocoa, and cookies. As the train reaches the North Pole, elves come around to pass out a special holiday bell, just like the one in the movie! The Santa Express Train will be a memory your kids will treasure forever, and it just may become your new family tradition.

Tickets sell out quickly, so be sure to book your trip in advance! Find out more information and ticket prices here.

Skate in the Park – November 17

Downtown Colorado Springs and the City Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Services is pleased to announce they’re back for their 5th year this holiday season! The rink will stay open from November 14 – January 15. Drive on down to Acadia Park for their Grand Opening Event on November 17 featuring FREE ice skating from 5 – 10 pm. Regular admission is $10, kids under 4 are free with paid adult.

Check out their full schedule for the season here as they have some fun activities planned for 2018-2019 including skating with members of the U.S. Figure Skating Team!

Winter Lights – November 17

This famous Winter Lights tradition began in 1947 at Seven Falls, when the staff simply tried to promote the canyon more by placing colored and white lights around the water. Locals and worldwide visitors went absolutely crazy for them! The Winter Lights holiday tradition continues today at Seven Falls as they celebrate their 4th annual Winter Lights event. You can see over 100,000 lights leading to the falls, and colored lights highlighting the faces of the Pillars of Hercules. It’s a super festive atmosphere and it makes for incredible family photo ops! Make sure to arrive early and dress in layers as the canyons are often 5-10 degrees chillier.

It’s a fun-filled family-friendly event that lasts the entire day. Between the hours of 10 am – 6 pm there will be an Elf Scavenger Hunt, letter writing station to Santa, a meet and greet with Santa, Mrs. Clause, and 2 reindeer, free hot chocolate, snacks, and a holiday-themed “selfie-station” complete with Gingerbread Men and Lollipops. Prices for admission are $14.50 for adults and $9 for children. (If you can’t make it on this day, the lights stay illuminated through February 24th.)

Holiday Alpaca Extravaganza – November 17-18

They’re fluffy, they’re cute, they’re gentle…they’re alpacas! These cute and unique animals make great pets or livestock, and you can come to see first hand why on November 17 and 18th. The 13th annual Holiday Alpaca Extravaganza at the Black Forest Community Club is a FREE event where you can learn, shop, and engage. Feel the warmth and comfort of alpaca fleece in the form of clothes and accessories for sale. Alpacas, of course, will also be on site so you can experience their gentle nature and soft fur. It’s a great event the whole family will love!

Gobble Til You Wobble 5k & 10k – November 22

Before you stuff your face with delicious Thanksgiving foods and pumpkin pie, why not burn some serious calories? The Gobble Til You Wobble 5k & 10k is a virtual race, meaning you can do it anywhere you choose. Gather your family and hit the road, or head to the gym solo to crush it. You simply time yourself (so you can go at your own pace), send in your finishing time, and they ship your medal to you! Price is only $18 which includes your medal, bib, and shipping costs. Plus, 15% of every entry will be donated to Feeding America. Lace up those running shoes and show your love for turkey day!

Thanksgiving Brunch – November 22

Don’t feel like cooking a huge Thanksgiving feast this year? No problem. Thanks to the Academy Hotel of Colorado Springs, they have you covered. Known for their popular Holiday Buffets, the hotel delivers excellent food, service, and top-notch atmosphere complete with waterfalls and a fireside lounge. Menu items include turkey and all the favorite Thanksgiving fixings and desserts. Adult beverages will be available as well. Pricing, times, and a complete menu can be found here. Although this event isn’t outdoors, it’s a terrific alternative if you’re feeling overwhelmed with cooking duties this year!

Victorian Christmas – November 23-25

Enjoy a unique and exhilarating Victorian holiday experience at the breathtaking Miramont Castle. The castle will be decorated extravagantly head to toe, there will be homemade refreshments available, and lavish entertainment. The event takes place from 10 am – 4 pm. Prices of admissions are $12 for adults, $11 for seniors, and $7 for children. (No reservations are necessary). Leave the kids at grandma’s and enjoy a romantic day-long getaway at the castle with your partner. Explore the beautiful outdoor grounds hand in hand. While you’re here you can take advantage of the gift shop on the 4th floor. They have Victorian decorations that make excellent Christmas gifts!

Festival of Lights Parade – December 1

Shortly after you’ve stuffed your bellies with the final Thanksgiving leftovers, it’s time to get into the Christmas spirit! What better way to kick off December 1st than to bundle up and watch dozens of decorated lighted floats and cheerful bands marching down the streets. The Festival of Lights Parade is celebrating its 34th year. Best of all, it’s free!

Electric Safari – December 7 – January 1

Get in the Christmas spirit at Electric Safari, located in the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. Be prepared to be in awe of nearly one million sparkling lights throughout the zoo. Select indoor animal exhibits will be open for the event, and as America’s only mountain zoo, this incredible light and animal experience is very rare! Fires are available throughout the zoo to help keep you and your family nice and warm. Kids can even stop in to see Santa through December 23!

Thanksgiving is the perfect season to spend with family and friends making lasting memories and finding new activities. If you have any other exciting and fun events coming up that you think we should know about, head on over to our Facebook group and chime in! For even more news on what’s happening in and around Briargate contact us today.