Merry & Bright Weekend hosts a number of festive events to put you in the holiday mood! From holiday stories to magically lit wonderland strolls, beautifully decorated windows, holiday shopping and last-minute wish lists we’ve got you covered. Celebrate the holiday season here in Michigan’s Great Southwest!


Getting into the holiday spirit is easy when you visit downtown St. Joe. During Window Wonderland attendees will enjoy strolling through downtown to view the dozens of storefronts that have decorated their windows for the holiday season. Vote for your favorite window at! Voting will be open starting at 7:00p on Friday, December 3 until 11:59p on Sunday, December 5. Sponsored by Perennial Accents.

INSIDER TIP: Southwest Michigan businesses and restaurants host a Countdown to New Year, a daily
giveaway event December 1-31! Shoppers earn one entry per $25 purchase (one time or cumulative)
at a St. Jospeh Today (SJT) member business. Qualifying purchases must be made between
November 19 and December 17. Receipts for purchases must be presented to an SJT
staff member at the Welcome Center by December 17.

Enjoy the Community Tree Lighting ceremony on Friday, December 3. The St. Joseph High School Choir begins Christmas carols near the tree located at the corner of Broad and Lake Boulevard at 6p with the ceremony taking place at 6:30p. Light up the Bluff will transform Lake Bluff Park into a winter wonderland (featuring 1 million holiday lights) December 3 - February 15. The lights will remain on through Valentine’s Day in Michigan’s Most Romantic City. This display is sponsored by the St. Joseph Improvement Association in partnership with the City of St. Joseph. For more information, call (269) 983 5541.

The Livery hosts December Darkness all weekend long! Attendees will enjoy a celebration of dark and barrel-aged beers, specialty firkins, a bottle release and live music.

The Krasl Art Center kicks off their 2021 Member’s Exhibition: Resilience Redux Preview Event. Catch music in the galleries at 5:30p followed by the preview party from 6:00p-8:00p!

ARS Gallery hosts an Opening Reception for “Works by Laurie Schirmer Carpenter” from 6:00p-8:00p. View this exhibit through January 28, 2022!


The Fanny Mae Memorial Reindog Parade returns to downtown St. Joseph at 3:00p! This event features dressed up pets and their owners in a variety of holiday garb. Be prepared to see all kinds of costumes from “Santa Bernards” to “Reindeer Rottweilers” – definitely a must-see event! Day of registration is available from 12:00p-2:45p at the Welcome Center (301 State Street). Sponsored by Honor Credit Union, Ed Todd and FuzzyButz.

INSIDER TIP: Saturday also marks the arrival of Santa in downtown
St. Joseph. After the parade, children can share their wish lists
with Santa at Santa’s House from 4:30p-7:00p.

The social district in downtown St. Joseph, known as the Downtown District, is your next winter destination. The Downtown District provides common areas in the downtown in which alcoholic beverages from participating establishments can be carried and consumed. Come join us!

‘Tis the season for Christmas Minature Train Rides at Eden Springs Park! Enjoy rides from 4:00p-8:00p December 4, 5, 11, 12, 18 and 19. Tickets are $4, cash only.

Sister Lakes Brewing Co. hosts a Holiday Maker’s Market from 2:00p-5:00p! Enjoy a delicious pint while you shop local artisans and makers.

Make your own Vintage Silverware Christmas Ornaments with Eclectic Peearl Crafting at Urban Garage Market from 12:00p-2:00p. Limited space available; $40/person includes two ornaments!


Santa’s House is moved from the North Pole each year to the corner of State & Pleasant Streets in downtown St. Joe! Santa will be available for wish list conversations and holiday photo ops weekends in December. Don’t forget to bring a camera to capture this magical visit! Sponsored by The Herald-Palladium.

INSIDER TIP: Don’t miss out on Letters to Santa and Storytime with
Mrs. Claus, all part of the Santa Series this December!

Catch the latest Twin City Players production Elf - “a modern-day classic about the importance of identity, different meanings of the word family and the magical charm of the holiday season”! Showtimes run Friday/Saturday at 7:30p and Saturday/Sunday at 2:00p, December 3-19.

Plank’s hosts a Brunch with Santa from 10:00a-1:00p! Bring your wish lists and get ready to enjoy an a la carte menu. Reservations recommended!

Stroll through the LIGHTS holiday display at Fernwood Botanical Gardens! Open Thursday-Sunday from 5:00p-9:00p through January 2, 2022. Advanced tickets are recommended.


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