While holiday festivities like Christmas and New Year's Eve are only a few weeks away, we’re now in the midst of holiday crunch time. There’s still plenty of time for fun, though! Get ready for a whirlwind weekend full of holiday activities, holiday parties, theater performances, light shows, holiday flicks and SO MUCH MORE! So get out there with friends or family, pick an event, take lots of photos/videos and have the time of your life!
The season of giving is here all weekend – so scroll down to see what all the city has in store, brought to you by Potawatomi Casino Hotel!
CANDY CANE LANE
Since 1984, Candy Cane Lane has been a beacon of neighborhood holiday lights in West Allis. Open on Friday, Nov. 24 through Christmas Day, you may expect to see “right turn only” signs as you arrive at Oklahoma Avenue from either 93rd, 94th, 95th, or 96th Street. Once you have arrived, enjoy your walk or drive through the festive display! All donations collected go toward the MACC Fund in support of research, treatment and eventual discovery of a cure for childhood cancers and related blood diseases.
TOP OF THE WORLD - A CARPENTERS CHRISTMAS SHOW
Want to feel on top of the world this weekend? Make your way to the Riverside for Top of the World - A Carpenters Christmas Show this Friday at 7:30 p.m. for a premier tribute to the ‘70s and ‘80s band, The Carpenters! Plus, special guest The Whiskeybelles will also join to bring traditional country music to Milwaukee. Purchase your tickets today!
DECK THE HALL BALL
Enjoy a winter ball this weekend at the Miller High Life Theatre! Bring your friends to Deck The Hall Ball to immerse yourself in an all-acoustic evening featuring Train, Johnny Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls and Phillip Phillips. Don’t wait – purchase your tickets today!
FESTIVE OLD FASHIONEDS AND CHOCOLATE
Spend a sweet evening at The Corners of Brookfield during Indulgence Chocolatiers’ Festive Old Fashioneds and Chocolate event this Friday at 5:30 p.m. Enjoy four pairings of old fashioneds and Indulgence chocolates – certainly a tasty way to spend your weekend! Tickets are $40 per person; click the link below to purchase your tickets!
BLACK & DIVERSE BUSINESS SHOWCASE
If you’re looking to expand your business, grow your network or need consulting, then you need to attend the Black & Diverse Business Showcase this Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Purchase your tickets to see keynote speakers Coach Latasha Brooks and Dr. George Fraser, shop the emerging market for local retail vendors, take advantage of speed coaching, meeting network experts, pitch competition, have a blast at the gala and more! Check out the full list of events here.
FRIDAY NIGHT RETRO DANCE PARTY
Have yourself a far-out flashback Friday and make your way to Mad Planet for their Friday night retro dance party with DJ Zerocool at 9 p.m. Dance your socks off to throwback pop hits all night long! You must be 21+ to enter at 9 p.m. and the cover fee is $7.
ENCHANTMENT IN THE PARK
Open nightly from Nov. 24 through Dec. 24 from 5-9 p.m., drive up to Washington County’s Regner Park for a trip through the enchanting park, glowing with a million LED and RGB lights throughout the decorations and displays. To finish, you’ll park your car in the lot and walk through the park to enjoy the other lights and displays. Enjoy live entertainment, music, special events, hot cocoa and treats every night, horse and carriage rides, toasted marshmallows by the open fire and visits with Santa, who will drop by Nov. 24- Dec. 23.
SANTA’S CHRISTMAS CAVALCADE
Wait, do you hear those sleigh bells jingling through the streets of Milwaukee? Don’t miss Santa and Mrs. Claus ring through the streets of Downtown Milwaukee this Friday at 5 p.m. Experience the Clauses making a trip through the city on their holiday route on top of a vintage fire truck, complete with singer Sarah Fierek singing holiday tunes and so much more!
COCOA WITH THE CLAUSES
Have you ever had a steaming cup of hot cocoa with Santa and Mrs. Claus? No? Well, get your chance this Saturday at Cathedral Square Park from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Parents are encouraged to snap pics of their kids with Santa, Santa’s elves and other holiday characters during photo opportunities. Don’t miss this joyous event!
MADE IN NERDWAUKEE
Who needs Comic-Con when you can make your way to Made in Nerdwaukee this weekend! Pilot Project Brewing will host Made in Nerdwaukee this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. where all things gloriously geeky will be available all day long! Shop from featured vendors like Crimson Koi Ceramics, Ds Squees, Gloss Moss and more, while enjoying a pint or two and a creative food menu with tasty bites to snack on!
MADONNA VS. LADY GAGA
Celebrate two pop icons this weekend at Mad Planet during Madonna vs. Lady Gaga! Bring your besties to dance the night away during this thrilling celebration featuring all your favorite hits from the queens of pop. You must be 21+ to enter at 9 p.m. and the cover fee is $7.
THE COLECTIVO CLOSER: AT THE BACK ROOM
Well, the time has come: The Back Room at Colectivo is officially coming to a close. However, The Back Room isn’t going away without an epic final performance! Honor the event space during a special evening to send off the venue in style this Saturday at 8 p.m. Rock out with local bands and Pabst Theater Group employee groups like Cripes, Toadskin, Widacre, Eliza Hanson and CAW. Soak up the final moments of the event space that has shared eight years of music and memories with all of you! Tickets are FREE; however, spots are limited so make sure to RSVP today!
FESTIVUS ON BRADY
It’s time to party like it’s the ‘90s because Festivus is back! Festivus may be a made-up holiday from "Seinfeld," but it'll be very real on Brady Street on Saturday, Dec. 9. Don’t miss the Airing of Grievances, a Festivus tradition where an elf will give you a piece of paper to write down what made you the angriest this past year. The grievances will be collected and pooled together for a drawing, with the best grievance winning a prize! Then channel your energy in Feats of Strength, aka participants will gather around the Festivus pole and hold up buckets filled with bottles of Bud Light, with the person who lasts the longest claiming a prize! Participating bars and restaurants on Brady Street include Malone’s on Brady, Jack’s American Pub, The Nomad, HI Hat, The Garage, Hosed on Brady, Pete’s Pub, Club Brady, WürstBar and Jo Cats Pub.
SAMPLES & SAMPLES: A WINE-PAIRING AND MUSIC IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCE
Wine not attend a wine-pairing and music-immersive experience this Saturday from 6:30 to 9 p.m! Listen to a night full of music paired with select wines during this unique sensory experience – plus, dig into tasty selections from Twisted Plants and non-alcoholic drinks from Soul Brew Kombucha too. The doors will open at 6:30 p.m.; purchase your tickets today!
HAUNTED HOLIDAYS 2023
Are you looking for a holiday thrill? Halloween and Christmas collide at The Rave/Eagles Club with the return of the annual Haunted Holiday Tours this Saturday from 2-10 p.m. Experience a self-guided tour through The Rave/Eagles Club starting in the Penthouse Lounge, where you’ll get an exclusive view of the historic building. Walk through the spectacular Eagles Ballroom and The Rave like a celebrity, see the unique dressing rooms and even journey through the haunted pool where the walls are covered in 31 years worth of autographs. Plus, the tour will feature plenty of Halloween and Christmas decorations, photo opportunities, complimentary all-access Haunted Holidays tour laminates and a holiday beverage. Purchase your tickets today!
A CELEBRATION OF GIVING: TOY DRIVE EVENT
Gather your friends and family to experience this new personal, interactive and – best of all – free light display! Walk through this self-guided tour while this light display comes to life and spreads the joy of Christmas cheer! All guests are welcome to bring a new toy to A Celebration of Giving Toy Drive on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 3-7 p.m. The light experience can be found at the Kacmarcik Center for Human Performance through Dec. 23, so make sure you visit and enjoy!
Binge the seasonal sensation “The Nutcracker” this weekend at Uihlein Hall! Enjoy Michael Pink’s interpretation of the seasonal classic featuring unique choreography, new costumes, a whimsical set and wondrous performances from the Milwaukee Ballet! Purchase your tickets today!
HANDMADE HOLIDAY MINI MARKET
Get ready for this mighty mini-market! Running at The Gage on Sunday, Dec. 10 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., roam around this cozy intimate market while you shop from over 40 artisans, makers and creatives. Plus, grab some food, drinks and enjoy the company around you while you shop. Admission is $3 per person and kids 12 and under are free.
DONUTS WITH SANTA AT THE FIREHOUSE
Donut ya know Santa will be at the Story Hill Firehouse this weekend? Have a very merry Sunday morning visiting Santa and taking photos with him, devouring donuts, and sipping on coffee, hot cocoa and milk! Tickets are only $15 per person while children 1 year and younger are free.
HOLIDAY SWEATER PARTY
Celebrate the holidays with the Explorium Brewpub during their two festive holiday sweater parties on Sunday, Dec. 10 from 1-4 p.m. as well as Thursday, Dec. 21 from 6-10 p.m., found at both locations. Find your ugliest Christmas sweater, slip it on and you’ll be entered into the ugly sweater contest with a chance to win some prizes! Even if you don't win, there will be drink specials, beer flights, live music and, if you’re a Mug Club member, a white elephant gift exchange.
SAINT KATE’S HOLIDAY MARKETPLACE
Feel the euphoria of the seasonal spirit while you’re surrounded by the music, decorations, art and community. Step into Saint Kate’s Holiday Marketplace on Saturday, Dec. 9, and Sunday, Dec. 10 from 11 a.m. and be transported into a holiday paradise! Shop from over 80 local artists throughout the hotel, experience the holiday magic with halls decked out in holiday decor and find the perfect gift for that special someone!
A CHRISTMAS CAROL
Experience the timeless Charles Dickens classic at the Milwaukee Rep from now until Christmas Eve. Purchase your tickets today to see “A Christmas Carol” come to life and watch the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future guide Ebenezer Scrooge’s journey to discover that it’s not too late to change his horrible ways and to see the good. It’s a Milwaukee tradition for a good reason!
Enjoy a night out this Sunday! Grab some friends and head to Cribbage Night at Indeed Brewing Company this Sunday from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Bring your board to get $2 off your first beer and play the night away; weekly prizes are awarded to first and second-place winners!
LATE-NIGHT HAPPY HOUR
Make the most of your Sunday Funday! Head over to Potawatomi Casino Hotel to play some games and enjoy a late-night happy hour at Dream Dance Steakhouse Wednesday through Sunday from 8 p.m. to close! Enjoy fine cocktails and wine and a delicious late-night menu while you savor the last few moments of the weekend before it’s time to get back to work on Monday!
ALL WEEKEND LONG
Black Arts MKE invites you to see “Black Nativity” by Langston Hughes this weekend! For one weekend only, enjoy this retelling of Hughes’ iconic 1961 play, which tells the story of the Nativity from the African-American perspective unfolding in Bethlehem as well as present-day Milwaukee. Purchase your tickets today to see Black Nativity at the Wilson Theater on Thursday, Dec. 7 through Sunday, Dec. 10.
HOLIDAYS AT THE TIMES
Spend the holidays at The Times Cinema this weekend! Enjoy holiday classics like “Holiday Inn” and “Frozen” this weekend – plus, many more throughout the month! Purchase your tickets to binge-watch your favorite holiday flicks and check out the full movie schedule today.
CHEERS TO THE SEASON: 12 MERRY HOLIDAY POP-UP BARS IN MILWAUKEE
In the spirit of the season, a dozen local bars have turned into holiday-themed pop-ups that’ll make your spirits merry and bright this season. Enjoy seasonal sippers, holiday decor, Christmas-y characters like Santa and Buddy the Elf, holiday photo opps, events and more. Experience the magic of the holiday season at these delightful dozen from now until the end of the year – check out the full guide today.
Immerse yourself in the sweet sound of the Milwaukee Symphony Chorus this weekend! Purchase your tickets to Handel’s Messiah to see and hear the splendid sounds of the chorus led by Music Director Ken-David Masur as they sing the composer’s iconic music all night long.
Get lost in the World’s Largest Christmas Maze this holiday season! Enchant Christmas is open now through Dec. 31 at the Franklin Field Ballpark Commons. Make new holiday memories this year by walking through the massive maze of dazzling lights, visiting the Christmas village, skating on the ice rink, visiting Santa, theme nights and so much more! It’s a true winter wonderland – so purchase your tickets today.
LATE NIGHT BITES
Picture this: You’re enjoying a night out or wandering around the city with your friends, hungry and wondering where you could grab a late-night snack. Well, hunger no more: Check out dining editor Lori Fredrich’s guide to late-night bites around the city to help sate your hunger this weekend, no matter how late or early your stomach starts rumbling. Click the link below:
HOLIDAY LIGHTS, DISPLAYS, EVENTS AND MORE
'Tis the season to be merry in Milwaukee! Countdown the days to Christmas by visiting the most spectacular and mind-blowing area light displays, holiday events and gleaming trees that will make it impossi-bell not to feel s-mitten! (What? It is the most pun-derful time of the year after all!) Find the glowing Christmas spirit by driving through these gleaming light tunnels, viewing colossal Christmas trees or treating your loved ones to a holiday event. Here’s a full guide today.
MILWAUKEE’S BEST WINTER DATE SPOTS
Don’t settle for the same tired old date night suggestions this holiday season! Picture this: It’s date night, and you have no idea where you want to go with your partner. You head to Google and look up "places to go on a winter date in Milwaukee," but you get the same old repetitive spots everyone else recommends. That ends right here: Check out this guide that provides a collection of engaging spots that transform your next date night options from average to picture-perfect.
Courtney Bondar is an adventurous Multimedia Journalist at OnMilwaukee, covering all things Milwaukee. Born and raised in Greendale, WI, Courtney has a deep-rooted connection to her hometown and a strong desire to explore and showcase the vibrant city of Milwaukee.
You can often find Courtney all over Milwaukee, attending exciting events - documenting her experiences on her Instagram stories. Her genuine enthusiasm for her work shines through in her posts - as she strives to capture the beauty of the city and shares it with her followers.
Courtney's passion for writing is evident in her engaging and heartfelt articles. While she covers a wide range of topics, she particularly enjoys delving into the intricacies of dating culture and the art of mixology. Her insightful and thought-provoking pieces offer a unique perspective on these subjects, captivating readers with her authenticity and wit.
After dedicating herself as an intern at OnMilwaukee, Courtney's hard work and dedication paid off when she earned her well-deserved diploma. Now, as OnMilwaukee's first full-time multimedia journalist, she is fully committed to continuing her journey - bringing her distinctive voice and storytelling skills to the forefront.