RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and there is no shortage of things to do around the area. From Christmas light displays and ghost tours to holiday movie screenings and karaoke, you and your family are sure to find something to do between decking the halls and caroling.
Here are 8News’ top picks for this weekend:
THROUGH JAN. 2: ILLUMINATE LIGHT SHOW
Pack the family into your car and head over to Meadow Events Park for this drive-through lights show. Nearly a million lights will be synchronized to music for a festive, fun time!
From 5:30 to 10 p.m. nightly at Meadow Event Park on 1311 Dawn Blvd, Doswell. $30 for a family vehicle with up to 9 people, $60 for a minibus or limo and $150 for large commercial vehicles, buses and motor homes. No trailers are permitted. You can buy tickets and find more information online here.
THROUGH JAN. 9: DOMINION ENERGY GARDENFEST OF LIGHTS
Stroll through the gardens at Lewis Ginter as they are illuminated with millions of lights. You’ll also find model trains, a spiderweb maze, a library with a reading room and gas fireplace, food and more.
From 4 to 10 p.m. nightly at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden at 1800 Lakeside Ave. Tickets are $5 to $17 for members and $8 to $24 for non-members. You can find more information and buy tickets online here.
THURSDAY, DEC. 23 TO SUNDAY, DEC. 26: IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE AT THE BYRD THEATRE
Watch the Christmas Classic “It’s A Wonderful Life” at the historic Byrd Theatre. Doors open 30 minutes before the showing.
From 7 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday and a showing from 10 to 11:45 on Friday at the Byrd Theatre on 2908 W. Cary St. Tickets are $8. You can find more information and buy tickets online here.
THURSDAY DEC. 23 & SUNDAY, DEC. 26: GHOSTS OF CHRISTMAS PAST
While the holiday season is mostly known for bright lights and cheer, a darker history lurks in the shadows. Learn about some of Ashland’s haunted history on this hour-long walking tour. Your chilling walk will be led by a guide wearing Victorian clothing.
Tours are from 7 to 9 p.m. Groups will meet at 108 Robinson St., Ashland. Tickets are $15 for people 10-years-old and up, and free for children 9 and under. You can find more information and purchase tickets online here.
FRIDAY, DEC. 24: CHRISTMAS EVE MARKET
Desperate to get some last-minute gift shopping done? Head on over to this market where you can find a variety of items from local vendors. There will also be a free toy giveaway.
From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 11700 Chester Village Dr. Free. You can find more details on Facebook.
FRIDAY, DEC. 24: CHRISTMAS EVE BRUNCH
Start your day off right with a festive holiday brunch. Industrial Taphouse will be serving their full brunch menu, including all of their best cocktails.
From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Industrial Taphouse on 10392 Leadbetter Road. You can find more information on Facebook.
FRIDAY, DEC. 24: TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS KARAOKE
While it may be the night before Christmas, this event will be far from a silent night. Whether you want to express your joy to the world through song, or just vent some holiday stress, come out to Karaoke with DJ King Richard for a night of singing and fun.
From 8 p.m. until “last call” at I Don’t Know Sports Grille on 1920 W Hundred Road, Chester. Free.
SUNDAY, DEC. 26: MAKING SPIRITS BRIGHT: BARTENDING POP-UP PARTY
This holiday party will keep the fun going even after Christmas is technically over. There will be themed drinks, a DJ and maybe a drag queen or two.
All of the night’s tips, as well as a percentage of bar sales, will be donated to Virginia Pride and Pride RVA, both nonprofits that help LGBTQ+ communities across Virginia.
From 6 p.m. to midnight at Thiersty’s RVA on 3516 Forest Hill Ave. Free.