With the holidays upon us, now is the time to make your plans to celebrate the season in style. Across South Jersey, there are a number of festive events sure to put a smile on your face. Check out this guide to what’s going on in our local communities.
Now through Dec. 23
Christmas Fantasy with Lights
Come and experience holiday magic right before your eyes! Be there by 5 p.m., when Santa Claus appears in his chimney, waves his magic wand and lights up the park with more than one million lights for the holiday season!
Storybook Land, 5 p.m., free, Egg Harbor Township, StoryBookLand.com
Christmas Light Show
Reservations are required for this Christmas musical light show and hayride.
Johnson’s Corner Farm, 5-9 p.m., free, Medford, JohnsonsFarm.com
Now through Dec. 24
Scuba Santa will be back to explore the holiday magic underwater among 15,000 incredible animals—and the world’s tallest underwater Christmas tree! Admission included with your daily ticket.
Camden Adventure Aquarium, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., ticket required, Camden, AdventureAquarium.com
Now through Dec. 31
South Jersey Holiday Light Show
Featuring dozens of dazzling, larger-than-life holiday displays to delight the entire family.
Bridgeport Speedway, 20-25 minutes, $25, Swedesboro, HolidayLightShow.com
Wildwoods’ Family Holiday Celebration
A five-weekend celebration of the winter season, including bonfires, parades, light shows, craft fairs, tree lightings, visits with Mr. and Mrs. Claus, and more!
Downtown Wildwood, varying weekend times and events, free, Wildwood, WildwoodHoliday.com
Now through Jan. 1
Holiday Light Show
Come enjoy the drive-thru holiday lights and displays!
Diggerland, 5:30-9:30 p.m., $35, West Berlin, Store.DiggerlandUSA.com
An Old-Fashioned Christmas in Cape May
America's oldest seaside resort is transformed into a bustling Dickensian village for the holidays with a variety of fun tours and events, as well as extended shopping hours.
Cape May, times vary, free, Cape May, CapeMayMAC.org
Now through Jan. 6
Smithville Holiday Light Show on the Lake
Over 120 Christmas trees made from more than 50,000 Christmas lights magically float on Lake Meone in the center of Historic Smithville.
Historic Smithville, weekdays 5:30-8:30 p.m., free, Smithville, HistoricSmithvilleNJ.com
Now through Jan. 7
Lights on Olmsted Lane
A free light show with a synchronized radio station that benefits the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Food Bank of South Jersey.
5 Olmsted Lane, 5-10:30 p.m. Sun.-Thur.; 5-11 p.m. Fri. & Sat., free, Cinnaminson, LightsOnOlmstedLane.com
Come to the mall dressed as Santa, in holiday attire or an ugly sweater and join the party!
Pick up a goody bag with surprises and a free drink ticket redeemable at Maggiano’s Italian Restaurant. There will be gift card giveaways, a DJ, a strolling magician, a caricature artist and more.
Cherry Hill Mall, 6-8 p.m., Cherry Hill, CherryHillMall.com
Sing Along with Santa at the Alpaca Farmette
Spend some time with Santa, Jollie the Elf and the alpacas of Morning Glori Farmette. Take adorable family photos, make crafts and sing along with Jollie!
Morning Glori Farmette, 2-5 p.m., $35, Marlton, MorningGloriFarmette.com
Dec. 1 through Dec. 23
DiDonato’s Magical Holiday Express
Take a train ride through millions of Christmas lights, photo-ops, the walkthrough Holiday Village, Toy Market, and more! Holiday snacks will be available.
DiDonato’s Family Fun Center, 4:45-8 p.m., $19.95+, Hammonton, DidonatoFunCenter.com
Washington Township Annual Christmas Tree Lighting and Winter Village
Join Washington Township for photos with Santa, cookies and hot chocolate, Christmas carols, holiday shopping and lighting the giant tree!
Washington Lake Park, 6 p.m., free, Sewell, TWP.Washington.NJ.US
Woodstown by Candlelight Tour
Come by to enjoy the historic home tours, horse-drawn carriage rides, photos with Santa, open-air holiday market, live musical performances and a live nativity scene with a camel.
South Main Street, 4-9 p.m., $15 for adults, $10 for kids, Woodstown, WoodstownByCandlelight.org
Hereford Inlet Lighthouse Christmas Tree Lighting
The Christmas tree lighting event includes music, refreshments, a free tour of the lighthouse and a visit with Santa Claus.
Hereford Inlet Lighthouse Courtyard, 4:30 p.m., free, North Wildwood, WildwoodsNJ.com
Boro in Lights
Join Glassboro as the township lights a 32-foot LED tree with more than 19,000 lights. There will be horse and carriage rides, a Santa village train set, free hot cocoa, a live nativity, live performances, a petting zoo, a winter ice bar and much more!
Glassboro Town Square, 6-9 p.m., free, Glassboro, Glassboro.org
Dec. 2 through Dec. 4
Whitall House Candlelight Tours
Red Bank Battlefield will host candlelight tours of the Whitall House. Come and enjoy the sights and sounds of Christmas in the Colonial era.
Red Bank Battlefield, times vary, free, National Park, GloucesterCountyNJ.gov
Annual Dickens Festival
A holiday event for all ages featuring holiday carolers, great food, hot chocolate, magic, comedy, juggling and more!
Main Street, 4:30-9 p.m., free, Medford, MedfordBusiness.org
Pitman Winter Village
Find unique gifts both in the uptown stores and from more than 40 vendors selling their hand-crafted creations on Ballard Avenue.
Uptown Pitman, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., free, Pitman, UptownPitman.com
Chanukah Village Walk & Menorah Lighting
Community leaders invite the community to join them in lighting the giant menorah. Afterwards, walk to Chabad in Medford and enjoy latkes, donuts and more holiday fun.
Tomlinson Park, 6 p.m., free, Medford, MedfordTownship.com
Gettin’ Merry Like Christmas: A Holiday Workshop
Join Camden FireWorks in its annual workshop for the holidays. Participants will learn how to make their own ornaments under the guidance of Terina Nicole, renowned artist.
Camden FireWorks, 2-4 p.m., Free, Camden, CamdenFireWorks.org
Dec. 4, Dec. 11 and Dec. 18
Santa’s Magic Toy Shoppe Show & Breakfast
This family-friendly breakfast buffet includes a Santa meet and greet where kids will get to tell him their secret Christmas wishes. Invite your children to visit with the jolly old elf, his helpers and the reindeer!
Braddock’s Tavern, 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., $39+ for adults, $25+ for kids, Medford, Braddocks.com
Dec. 9, Dec. 10, Dec. 16 and Dec. 17
Elf the Musical
This musical adaptation is filled with all the warmth and whimsy of the 2003 holiday film it’s based on.
Cherokee High School, 7 p.m., $15, Marlton, CherokeeDrama.org
Dec. 9 through Dec. 18
A Christmas Story: The Musical
Filled with quirky and lovable characters, this zany, heartfelt and nostalgic musical is as delightful as the biggest, shiniest present under the tree on Christmas morning.
Broadway Theatre, times vary, $30, Pitman, TheBroadwayTheatre.org
Mount Holly Holiday House Tour
The house tour is a fun and festive way to celebrate the holiday season, featuring homes throughout the historic downtown area that are decorated in all styles of Christmas.
Vincent’s Ice Cream Shop, 3-8 p.m., $15-20, Mount Holly, MainStreetMountHolly.org
Santa Visits the Farmette
Come visit Santa and the alpacas of Morning Glori Farmette!
Morning Glori Farmette, 10 a.m.-noon, $50, Marlton, MorningGloriFarmette.com
A celebration of all things winter, including a Victorian Village in the Smithville Mansion, carolers, holiday activities for all ages, live entertainment, a holiday marketplace, art exhibits, Santa and more.
Historic Smithville Park, 1-7 p.m., free, Eastampton Township, Co.Burlington.NJ.US/1988/Winterfest
Winter in the Pines
Get in the holiday spirit at Batsto Village!
Batsto Village, noon-3 p.m., free, Hammonton, BatstoVillage.org
MJA Hanukkah Party
Join the Moorestown Jewish Association and enjoy Hanukkah food and music, arts and crafts, a storybook reading for kids and more.
Community House of Moorestown, 4-6 p.m., $10, Moorestown, MoorestownJewishAssociation.org
Dec. 16 through Dec. 18
Santa’s Workshop Vendor Event
Shop for unique gifts from a variety of small and local businesses right inside the mall.
Moorestown Mall, 10 a.m.-7 p.m., free, Moorestown, Moorestown-Mall.com
Dec. 17 and 18
The Nutcracker Ballet presented by Vineland Regional Dance Company
This classic Christmas story is a fairytale ballet in two acts centered on a family’s Christmas Eve celebration. The VRDC performs this magical, memorable tale of Clara, the magical Nutcracker Prince, the evil Mouse King, the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Cavalier.
Frank Guaracini Jr. Fine & Performing Arts Center, Dec.17: 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.; Dec. 18: 2 p.m., $20+, Vineland, VRDC.org
Family Holiday Beach Bonfire
North Wildwood Volunteer Fire Company #1 will host this event, which features a bonfire, music and photos with Santa and other winter wonderland characters. Food will be available for purchase.
The beach at Second and Surf, 5-9 p.m., $10 for adults, $2 for kids, Wildwood, WildwoodHoliday.com
Community Menorah Lighting
All are welcome to connect with the community and enjoy an evening of fun for the whole family with music, latkes, donuts, dreidels and choco-gelt! Sponsored by Chabad of Camden and Burlington Counties.
Lumberyard Garden, 5-9 p.m., free, Collingswood, Collingswood.com
Motown Christmas Celebration
Join Past Masters for a night of family fun and sing along to the greatest hits by artists such as Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, The Temptations and many more. All are performed live and with a Christmas twist.
The Vault at Victor Records, 8 p.m., $26-29, Camden, VictorRecords.com