If you’re planning a weekend get-away, afternoons with visiting relatives, celebrations with life-long friends, or the creation of new family traditions, you’ll find something for everyone this year in Knoxville.

Market Square Downtown

The festivities kick off on Friday, November 29 with the opening of Holidays on Ice presented by Home Federal Bank. Adults and children can skate day and night, seven days a week, at the open-air ice rink nestled under twinkling lights in the middle of Market Square. You’ll find music, 160,000 pounds of ice, and great people watching through January 5. Admission includes skate rental. Special appearances by Peppermint Panda, the ice-rink mascot, will add to the skating and photo fun. Visit knoxvillesholidaysonice.com for weather updates.

Rick Terry Jewelry Designs
Rick Terry Jewelry Designs photo credit Inside of Knoxville

Grab a hot chocolate and stroll around downtown to enjoy windows, doors, and patios dripping in lights and decorated for the holidays, including over 100,000+ lights and garlands draped throughout trees and parks.

Peppermint Cocoa

Adding to the peppermint fun, make some stops on the Peppermint Trail from November 29 through January 5. Downtown restaurants, bakeries, coffee shops, bars, and boutiques will be featuring peppermint specials throughout the season. So get ready for peppermint coffees, peppermint brownies, peppermint cocktails, peppermint, peppermint, peppermint. How many you ask? Too many to count! Help others navigate the trail by posting your favorites at #knoxpeppermint. 

Elf on Shelf tree

And we’re just getting started with the season-long fun! Beginning November 29, over two dozen downtown businesses will be adopting Scout Elves for The Elf on the Shelf® Adventure. Children of all ages can be a part of this community-wide Elf on the Shelf scavenger hunt as Santa’s helpers land each day in Downtown Knoxville. Scout Elves will return to the North Pole for the season on January 5. 

In addition to these season-long activities mark your calendars for these additional holiday events:

Regal Celebration of Lights

Regal Celebration of Lights, November 29, 6pm-9pm  Downtown Knoxville

Lighting of the 42' tree in Krutch Park Ext. Music, carolers, train rides, pictures with Santa, face painting, marshmallow roasting and more. Market Street will have children’s craft activities, Home Depot's Little Elves Workshop, and the opportunity to make cards to send to soldiers with ‘Cards for Heros’ by the American Red Cross. Kids can enjoy a ride on a miniature train down Gay St. Come enjoy it all, there’s too much to list! Live music begins at 5:30pm, tree ceremony begins at 6pm.

WDVX Holiday Ho-Ho-Hoedown

WDVX Holiday Ho-Ho-Hoedown, November 29, 6:30pm-9pm  Downtown Knoxville, Market Square

Musical celebration to help kick off the holiday season.

Christmas at Chilhowee

Christmas at Chilhowee Featuring the Capitol Christmas Tree, November 22, 6pm-9pm  Chilhowee Park

Lighting of the tree on the Chilhowee Park Bandstand. Live music and many free activities. This year we are one of the "Whistle Stops" for the Capitol Christmas Tree and will be featured during Christmas at Chilhowee. Come see the 60ft Christmas tree that will be traveling from New Mexico to the Capitol Building. Train rides for all ages, pictures with Santa Claus, marshmallow roasting, hot cocoa face painting, balloon animals, and more. The Muse Knoxville will have special activities.

WIVK Christmas Parade

WIVK Christmas Parade, December 6, 7pm  Downtown Knoxville

Bands, dancers, floats, characters, and Santa Claus parade down Gay Street bringing fun holiday spirit to all!

Tour de Lights

Tour de Lights, December 14, 5:30pm  Starts under the Jackson Avenue Bridge in the Old City and ends in Market Square.

 The community is invited to participate in the Tour de Lights presented by Visit Knoxville and Bike Walk Knoxville; a fun, free, family-friendly bike ride through downtown and North Knoxville. Participants are encouraged to get in the holiday spirit by decorating themselves and their bikes, while trying to win coveted awards. The event engages neighborhoods and businesses, along with others who come out to view the festivities. Sponsors include Downtown Knoxville Alliance.

It’s a Wonderful Life

“It’s a Wonderful Life” presented by Knoxville TVA Employees Credit Union December 15, 2pm and 6pm at Tennessee Theatre

Two free showings of a Christmas classic at the classic Tennessee Theatre.

New Year’s on the Square

New Year’s on the Square, December 31, 10:00pm  Downtown Knoxville, Market Square

Ring in 2020 with friends and family. Ball drop at Midnight.

This jam-packed, season-long holiday schedule is organized by the City of Knoxville, Visit Knoxville, and the Downtown Knoxville Alliance with significant support from a variety of corporate sponsors. Details about what’s happening city-wide can be found at visitknoxville.com/events/christmas. Downtown Knoxville merrymaking can be found at downtownknox.org/holiday.