Like it or not, the Christmas & New Year holiday season is quickly approaching! Despite all of the chaos & stress, once it arrives it’s hard to deny that Christmas in Telluride is truly magical. Once December 25 rolls around, it’s hard not to feel the warm, fuzzy glow of the festive winter season – the smell of the Christmas tree, excited kids anticipating Santa’s arrival, and spending quality time with family & friends.
There are some Christmas events in Telluride to make your holiday season extra special. If you’re visiting Telluride during the month of December, there’s sure to be a Christmas celebration going on somewhere. Below is a list of 12 signature Telluride Christmas events. Whether you’re a new Telluride resident or visiting for the holidays, these events are a fabulous chance to get your kids outside, meet new people, and revel in the Christmas spirit.
1. Family Date Night – Friday, November 30
Location: Telluride Conference Center, Mountain Village
This annual fundraiser for Mountain Munchkins childcare center in Mountain Village offers a holiday themed evening with family-friendly activities, movie, food, silent auction, a visit from Santa, and more.
2. Holiday Arts Bazaar – November 30 – December 2, 2018
Location: Telluride Elks Lodge, 472 W Pacific Avenue
From the Telluride Arts District website: One-of-a-kind, handmade goods from artists and artisans. The Telluride Holiday Arts Bazaar is a lively holiday tradition hosted by Telluride Arts that features a wide variety of fine art, crafts, and artisan foods, all made by hand. The Bazaar is a three-day event the first weekend of December, taking place at the Telluride Elks Lodge.
3. Noel Night – December 5, 2018
Location: Town of Telluride
This is a great opportunity to get some Christmas shopping done, as well as immerse yourself in Telluride’s festive holiday ambiance. Local retailers and restaurants offer treats, snack, and discounts of up to 40% off. Shop locally for your holiday gifts, and participate in the holiday cheer!
4. Old Fashioned Christmas at Schmid Ranch – Saturday, December 8
Location: Schmid Ranch (approximately 25 minutes from Telluride)
I’m ashamed to say it took me 6 years to make the pilgrimage to Schmid Ranch for their Christmas Celebration. Once our daughter was born, it was suddenly on the radar & I have to say it is my absolute favorite part of Christmas. I wouldn’t miss it for anything. The event is FREE to attend. You can cut down a beautiful, fresh Christmas tree for about $20 (a bargain compared to Telluride prices). From the Visit Telluride website:
Bring the kids and step into Christmases past. Find your Christmas tree from the Schmid Family Ranch forest, make a wreath, enjoy homemade hot cocoa and more! The Schmid Family Ranch is a Centennial farm on Wilson Mesa, about ten miles West of Telluride, Colorado. The ranch has been in operation since the family homesteaded in 1882. The family worked with the Nature Conservancy to preserve the entire ranch through a conservation easement now held by the San Miguel Conservation Foundation. Today the family’s wish is to share this unique property with the community while maintaining a way of life that honors the land. This event is FREE and open to the public. 12-4pm.
5. Christmas Ski Tree Lighting & Ullr’s Ceremonial Ski Burn – December 5, 2018
Location: Telluride Elks Park
Another Telluride classic, the huge Telluride Ski Tree is constructed by retro, once loved skis donated by the Telluride community. The tree is lit up, then ceremoniously burned to favor the old Norse god Ullr, Patron Saint of Skiers.
6. Holiday Prelude – December 15-16, 2018
Location: Mountain Village Core
Mountain Village transforms into the North Pole for the Holiday Prelude celebration which promises holiday movies, train rides, santa and his workshop, live reindeer, ice skating and holiday surprises around every corner. Children can share their Christmas list with Santa, make holiday crafts with the elves, and enjoy holiday movies with free hot chocolate and popcorn. In addition, a curling demo will be held to demonstrate how the sport is played and help folks learn to curl from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. (Saturday only), ice skating will be available from noon to 4 p.m., and sledding (Saturday only) will be held from 4:30 – 6 p.m. Train rides through Mountain Village’s twinkling lights will also delight children of all ages. Merchants around Mountain Village also extend discounts and specials to customers, along with raffles, giveaways, food and drink specials, and more. Saturday, 1-9pm. Sunday, 1-5pm. Visit townofmountainvillage.com for this year’s schedule of events.
7. Santa’s Workshop: Holiday Crafts – December 15-16, 2018
Location: Mountain Village, Heritage Plaza
Another awesome FREE holiday events. Santa’s Workshop will be open in Heritage Plaza. Help Santa’s elves make Christmas ornaments or a holiday decoration.
8. Trip to the North Pole & Visit with Santa – December 15-16, 2018
Location: Starts at gondola station in Telluride and ends in Mountain Village
The magic starts at the Oak Street gondola station where the free gondola is transformed into a Trip to the North Pole. Children of all ages will delight in the decorations and lights galore as our elves send you on your way to visit Santa in his workshop. Tell Santa what you want for Christmas and make an ornament with one of his elves!
9. Tree Lighting Ceremony with Santa – December 15, 2018
Location: Mountain Village. Heritage Plaza
Santa and some merry carolers lead the countdown the the ceremonial lighting of the Mountain Village Christmas tree. 6pm.
10. Holiday Movies in Mountain Village – December 15-16, 2018
Location: Mountain Village, Heritage Plaza
Children can share their Christmas List with Santa, make holiday crafts with the elves and enjoy holiday movies with free hot chocolate and popcorn. This year’s holiday films include “The Year Without Santa Clause,” “Polar Express” and “Elf.” A parents’ lounge and cash bar will be available for parents who want to put their feet up.
11. Holiday Pop-Up Market – December 16-17, 2018
The Holiday Pop-Up Market returns to the Opera House SHOW Bar with gift options from local retailers, artisans and more! The Market will take place Sunday, Dec. 16, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. and Monday, Dec. 17 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
12. Christmas Eve Torchlight Parade – December 24, 2018
Location: Town of Telluride
Join Telluride Ski Resort for a favorite tradition among locals and visitors alike. At 6:30pm, gather in the Town of Telluride and watch as skiers and boarders meander down Coonskin and Telluride Trail with blazing red torchlights.
I hope you find this list of events useful for the upcoming holiday season! For your Telluride lodging needs, call our team at 888-998-6471. Here at Lodging in Telluride, we have a selection of vacation rental condos that are affordable and conveniently located in the town of Telluride. Friendly and attentive service is our hallmark.