Silver Dollar City theme park in Branson, Mo., takes “merry and bright” to the next level with its annual An Old Time Christmas event, featuring festive shows, 6.5 million dazzling lights, a stunning 8-foot tall animated tree, and entertainment galore.
Voted the “Best Theme Park Holiday Event” by USA Today’s 10Best Reader’s Choice poll—four times!—An Old Time Christmas returns to Silver Dollar City with more yuletide joy than ever before, and it all starts with Joy on Town Square’s 8-foot tall tree, custom designed and animated by video-motion.
The park is decked out in millions of twinkling lights that cast a festive glow over the streets, buildings, walkways and trees, the highlight of which is the 1.5 million-light Christmas in Midtown expansion. Stroll through dazzling light tunnels and view festive wreath portals, flying angels, running reindeer, a moving train, stars, snowflakes, and a giant turning globe. Some displays tower up to nine stories high!
This year brings more shows than in past years, with 30 in total, running each day and evening in multiple venues. Be inspired by The Living Nativity; laugh at the hilarity of The Saloon Frontier Fa-La-La Follies; and sing along with the new Cool Yule holiday stage spectacular. Gospel singers, Holiday Hearthside Harmonies with the Homestead Pickers, and other musical groups round out the offerings. Performances take place on outdoor stages in recognition of current health considerations.
Actors in Silver Dollar City’s shows that formerly took place indoors now add to the yuletide atmosphere as strolling Carolers, and a 20-minute trip on the Frisco Sing-Along Steam Train is always a big hit, while Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer acts as Grand Marshall for Rudolph’s Holly Jolly Christmas Light Parade. This joyous cavalcade of nine lighted floats and 45 costumed characters makes its way along the park’s streets in a one-of-a-kind procession families will adore. The parade takes place twice nightly.
Shopping is a big part of the experience, and Christmas Hollow is the place for all your holiday gift-giving ideas, holiday décor, collectables, Christmas stockings and seasonal merchandise, while artisans also demonstrate their unique crafts as they create heirloom works of art.
Festive foods have not been forgotten, and there are several concessions offering tastes of the season, from a warming mug of cinnamon-spiced wassail and hot cocoa to delicious sweet treats. Can’t do without that perennial Christmas confection? Eva & Delilah’s Holiday Fruitcakes has it covered with their fruitcake recipe that has been handed down from generation to generation.
New this year is the Rivertown district, featuring Clara Belle’s Cinnamon Bread bakery and Rivertown Smokehouse, where fresh-smoked meats and luscious desserts tempt passers-by. The Smokehouse’s deck is covered and heated for the comfort of visitors who prefer to dine outside, and it offers a gorgeous view over the Mystic River.
Visitors can also indulge in a full Holiday Dinner with selections that include smoked turkey, ham, prime rib, and all the trimmings, plus potato leek soup and Silver Dollar City’s ever-popular Miner’s Beef Stew. End the festive feast with samplings of homemade apple dumplings with ice cream, fried pies, holiday funnel cakes, and more.
All in all, there are more than 1,000 lighted trees, 600 wreaths, and over three miles of garland and ribbon adorning the park, and no holiday event would be complete without the “jolly old elf” himself. Children can share their Christmas wish list with Santa Claus at Santa’s Cottage, in an appropriately physically distanced setting.
An Old Time Christmas takes place on select dates from Nov. 7 – Dec. 30 and, weather permitting, some of the park’s attractions will be open.
Visitors can also ring in the New Year at Silver Dollar City’s New Year’s Eve Celebration, which runs from Dec. 31, 2020 – Jan. 2, 2021.
In keeping with CDC guidelines, face masks are required for all visitors ages 3 and up, temperature screenings take place before entry, hand sanitizing stations are available throughout the park, and physical distancing measures are in place. Park capacity will be limited, and date-specific tickets should be purchased in advance.
For more information about An Old Time Christmas at Silver Dollar City and to purchase tickets, visit SilverDollarCity.com.