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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.

Telluride Victorian home decorated with Christmas Lights

Christmas lights adorn this cute Victorian house on Colorado Avenue in Telluride.




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. 

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1. Telluride Fire Festival – December 2-4, 2022

Location: Telluride and  Mountain Village

Expect over-the-top fiery art that shoots flames high into the night sky. The goal, bringing  a little piece of Burning Man to the mountains of Telluride.  Come see, interact with, and watch as artists from all over the world create visual magic. For more information contact: Rocky Mountain Arts : 970-708-1059

2. Holiday Arts Bazaar – December 2, 2022 – 4-7 pm

Location: Aha Haa School for Arts, 155 W. Pacific Ave.

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.

3. Noel Night – December 7, 2022 5-9 pm

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!


Sleigh Ride during Telluride holiday event at Schmid Ranch

Make the drive out to Schmid Ranch for the annual Christmas Celebration.


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4. Old Fashioned Christmas at Schmid Ranch 

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.

Telluride Colorado Christmas Ski Tree

The Ski Tree lighting & burning in Elks Park is a truly unique Telluride Christmas event.








5. Christmas Ski Tree Lighting – December 7th, 2022

Location: Town of Telluride, Elks Park @ 5 pm

This special event marks the beginning of the holiday season which also coincides with a fun local tradition, Noel Night. The festivities kick off at Elks Park with the traditional lighting of the ski tree, sponsored by the Telluride Ski & Snowboard Club.  The Telluride Ski Tree is a 17-foot tall holiday tree made out of old community skis.  The evening would not be complete without a bonfire — typically fueled by skis in an attempt to appease Ullr so he blesses us with a white winter — and hot chocolate, which is for everyone.


6. Mountain Village Holiday Prelude – December 10-11, 2022

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,  ice skating and holiday surprises around every corner. Children can share a Christmas list with Santa, make holiday crafts with the elves, and enjoy holiday movies with free hot chocolate and popcorn. In addition, free ice skating will be available from noon to 4 on both days. 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, 1-4pm. Visit townofmountainvillage.com for this year’s schedule of events.

7. Santa’s Workshop: Holiday Crafts -December 11-12,  2022

Location: Mountain Village, Heritage Plaza

Another awesome FREE holiday event. 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 11-12, 2022

Location: Starts at gondola station @ Oak in Telluride and ends in Mountain Village (1-4 pm)

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 11, 2022 6-6:15 pm

Location: Mountain Village. Heritage Plaza

Santa and some merry carolers lead the countdown the the ceremonial lighting of the Mountain Village Christmas tree. 

10. Holiday Movies in Mountain Village – December 11-12, 2022

Location: Mountain Village, Heritage Plaza (During Holiday Prelude)

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.

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11. Telluride Sleighs and Wagons – all winter long

Telluride Sleighs and Wagons offers a trip back to a simpler time with horse-drawn sleigh ride dinners at the historic Aldasoro Ranch. The great grandchildren of pioneering sheep rancher Joaquin Aldasoro serve Farm to Table style cuisine with Basque family recipes. Set in a canvas-sided tent deep in the heart of a spectacular 740-acre family ranch that is otherwise off-limits to the general public. See more detailed information at Telluride Sleighs and Wagons


12. Christmas Eve Torchlight Parade – December 24, 2022

Location: Town of Telluride

Join Telluride Ski Resort for a favorite tradition among locals and visitors alike. At 6:30 pm, gather in the Town of Telluride and watch as skiers and boarders meander down Coonskin and Telluride Trail with blazing red torchlights. Can only be seen from the town of Telluride.

Telluride Christmas Letters to Santa

Pssst! Santa’s post box is located at the Telluride Post Office. Be sure that letter gets to the North Pole in time.

I hope you find this list of events useful for the upcoming holiday season! For additional information on events in the Telluride area please click on Visit Telluride.  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.