Christmas Traditions in St. Charles

No one in the St. Louis area does Christmas quite the same as St. Charles. Christmas Traditions is in it’s 49th year and has come a long way from it’s humble beginnings back in the 1970s. There is so much to experience even the busiest schedules are sure to be able to fit something joyous in. 

Attractions and events include carolers and music entertainment, Opening Day Ceremony, Tree Lighting Ceremony, The Santa Parade, Santa’s Cottage, Photos with Victorian Santa Claus, Oh Christmas Tree : Evolution of an Icon, Krampus Karnival, A Christmas Carol Stroll, Holiday Food Hall of Fame, Old-fashioned Hot Roasted Chestnuts, Twas The Night Before Christmas Reading, Twas the night before Christmas Bicentennial Celebration, The Great Christmas Traditions Quest, Covent Garden (victorian marketplace), Piccadilly Peddlers (merchandise), Candlelight Procession, Gingerbread Village and Santa Send Off. 

This year new attractions include, Sound of the Season : A celebration of Caroling History, Battle for the Land of the Sweets, and 8 Maids Wassail Tavern. Visit Discover St. Charles website to get a full description and schedule for each.

Although there is much to be adored from a traditional Christmas standpoint the event has also embraced modern stories. The Santa Parade showcases all of the event’s characters. Newer characters include Judah Maccabee, who defended his country preserving Jewish religion, Mtoa Hadithi teaches the symbols of Kwanzza and La Befana, an Italian Christmas Witch. Many regions in Italy don’t exchange their “big” presents on Christmas but wait until January 5th when La Befana visits. The Santa parade is concluded by international ambassadors representing their country,  flag hoisted. 

There is also a sensory-friendly experience. Christmas Traditions can be busy and loud and sometimes just too much to process. They have created a private mini-experience with lighting and sound considered. You can request this special time online.

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