It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and your local Salt Lake holiday favorites are back! With Thanksgiving a little less than a week away, the holiday season is about to kick off in full swing. Salt Lake City has something to offer everyone, from live music and holiday-themed displays to performing arts and a winter solstice celebration. With snow in next week’s forecast, Salt Lake City will once again turn into a magical winter scene surrounded by snow-capped mountains — the perfect setting for enjoying your favorite holiday events.

Here are a few local favorites that are returning for 2019 — and it all begins this weekend!

2019 Bells on Temple Square Holiday Concert

Kick off the holidays this weekend with the Bells on Temple Square! Part of The Tabernacle Choir organization, the hand bell ensemble includes 35 volunteer musicians living within a 100-mile radius of Temple Square. The bells will be ringing Friday and Saturday, November 22-23 at 7:30 pm in the Salt Lake Tabernacle on Temple Square. Patrons are encouraged to come for standby seating which is nearly always available. Temple Square lights are turned on November 29th, the day after Thanksgiving, and will be on until New Year’s Eve.

Holiday Window Stroll at Grand America

Get into the holiday spirit by walking through one of Salt Lake’s most elegant hotels. The Grand Christmas Hotel Holiday Window Stroll showcases “14 hand-crafted, whimsical displays that capture the imagination and joy of the holidays. Sip on hot chocolate while exploring taking a journey through this year’s theme of the Night Before Christmas. The Window Stroll unveiling is Tuesday, November 26 at 4 pm and runs through December 31.

Christkindlmarkt at This is The Place Heritage Park

Admission is free to this annual Christmas market in Salt Lake’s Foothill District. The historic park transforms for the season with costumes, decorations, treats, sweets, and arts and crafts of all kind. The market is open from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm from December 4-7th as locals and visitors alike get into the spirit of the holiday season. Kid-friendly activities include daily parades, a live nativity, a gnome festival, and more.

Festival of Trees

Charity and holiday tradition unite at the Festival of Trees. This fundraising event for Primary Children’s Hospital is the perfect way to kick off the holiday season. Each year, the Festival of Trees transforms Mountain America Expo Center into a wonderland of uniquely decorated Christmas trees, wreaths, playhouses, crafts, quilts and freshly baked goods. This year’s festival will take place over a 4 day period, December 4-7 from 10 am to 9 pm. For ticket purchase and info, visit here.

Breakfast with Santa at Gardner Village

Treat your family to a magical morning in a charming setting as the Mill Plaza at Gardner Village presents Breakfast with Santa. Children will enjoy a visit with St. Nick, a yummy buffet breakfast, music, an activity, plus a special surprise visitor! This year’s Breakfast with Santa will be held November 30, December 6, 7, 13, 14, 20 & 21 with 8:30 am and 10:30 am seatings. Make sure to bring your camera to capture the fun!

Winter Solstice Celebration at Red Butte Gardens

A kid-friendly celebration of winter and nature, this annual event commemorates the shortest day of the year with crafts and explorations. This ticketed event is $5 for Garden members, Garden admission + $5 to the general public and free for kids 2 and under. The celebration is held in the orangerie on December 21st from 9 am to noon and includes admission to the rest of the gardens.

Hanukkah Candle Lighting at Snowbird Resort

Each year during the 8 nights of Hanukkah, candles are lit in a traditional ceremony every evening at sundown. Guests should meet at The Cliff Lodge Front Desk Lobby from 5 – 5:15 pm, Dec. 22-29th and are welcome to bring their menorahs. Make it a stay-cation and book a room at this newly-remodeled ski lodge and enjoy ski-in/ski-out convenience, on-site ski rental, and a year-round heated pool to enjoy after a day on the slopes.

Ballet West’s The Nutcracker

Visitors and locals alike flock to this annual performance of William Christensen’s The Nutcracker at Capitol Theatre in Salt Lake City, which highlights the incredible full-length choreography of this classic children’s story. Performances are held throughout the month of December, with special matinee performances every weekend at discounted prices. Visit here for more info on tickets and schedule.

Like it or not, the holidays are upon us! Bundle up, get outside and explore all the city has to offer. What’s your favorite holiday event in Salt Lake City?