Over the next few days, the holidays kick off in proper fashion with tree lightings, parades, performances and other DARTable events. Get in the spirit, get on DART and get to these festive happenings.
Thursday, Dec. 5
Christmas on the Square kicks off today at the Downtown Garland Square with a tree lighting from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Enjoy carolers, hot chocolate and a visit with Santa. – plus thousands of lights festooning the quaint neighborhood. The family fun is about a 4-minute walk from the Blue Line’s Downtown Garland Station. The lights and other festive touches will be there through the end of the month.
The Wizard of Oz: The Holiday Family Concert opens tonight at The Firehouse Theatre in Farmers Branch. You know the story: Dorothy dreams of escaping her mundane life in rural Kansas. Along comes a twister to transport her and her little dog Toto to the land of Oz. There, she encounters plentiful perils and a familiar cast of characters. The play/concert runs through Dec. 22. The venue is right across the street from Farmers Branch Station on the Green Line.
Cirque Holidays is another enchanting entertainment that opens tonight. Through a blend of theater and circus, the unique performance celebrates holidays around the world. You’ll see death-defying stunts, amazing feats, entertaining clowns and lots more. The performance by Lone Star Circus plays through Dec. 22 at the WaterTower Theatre – that’s around the corner from Addison Transit Center.
Friday, Dec. 6
Stuff a Bus is happening all day at SMU/Mockingbird Station. DART’s annual event benefits North Texans in need. The event compliments two separate DART employee-sponsored drives – Santa Cops and Comforting of the Souls. Each year, DART Police and operators ask the public to help them fill a bus full of donations. Stop by from 6 a.m.-5 p.m. with donations of new adult socks, blankets, canned foods and unwrapped toys.
The socks and blankets go to area nursing homes, while toys and food help families in need. Just look for the 40-foot long DART Stuff-a-Bus in the parking lot of SMU/Mockingbird Station. KKDA K104 and KRNB Smooth R&B 105.7 are DART’s partners in the event, and both will broadcast their morning shows live. DART employees will be there all day, too. The Red, Blue and Orange lines, as well as numerous bus routes, serve SMU/Mockingbird Station. The station also offers available parking. Find the station at 5465 E. Mockingbird Lane, just east of the intersection with North Central Expressway.
Dickens in Historic Downtown Plano is like stepping into a Christmas card. The neighborhood becomes a wonderland with carolers, a visit from Santa and a tree lighting in Haggard Park. This trip back in time takes place at Haggard Park, right next to Downtown Plano Station.
Saturday, Dec. 7
Toyota Dallas Holiday Parade returns to downtown Dallas! Rumored to be in attendance: marching bands, costumed characters, clowns, dancers, Mrs. Claus, floats and giant balloons. The parade starts at 10 a.m. at Commerce and Houston streets and finishes at Dallas City Hall Plaza. The parade is free; guaranteed bleacher seats are available for purchase. Take any DART Rail line to St. Paul, Akard or West End stations, and walk three blocks south.
Free First Saturdays at the Nasher Sculpture Center is here for another month, with kid-friendly programming from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and free admission for all until 5 p.m. Create, discover and make memories. You can even head on over to the museum after the Toyota Dallas Holiday Parade! The Nasher is about a 4-minute walk from St. Paul Station on all four DART Rail lines.
Klyde Warren Park Holiday Show & Tree Lighting is an annual tradition featuring photos with Santa, face painting, crafts, games, live holiday entertainment and other family-friendly activities. The holiday extravaganza is even more spectacular with downtown Dallas as a backdrop. The celebration happens from 2-6 p.m. The park is about a 9-minute walk from St. Paul Station or you can catch the M-Line Trolley there.
Sunday, Dec. 8
The Nutcracker closes after today’s performance by Texas Ballet Theatre. Clara and her Nutcracker Prince battle an army of mice led by the evil Rat King, and travel through a winter wonderland to the Sugar Plum Fairy's Kingdom of Sweets. It’s a holiday tradition like no other at the Winspear Opera House, about a 6-minute walk from Pearl/Arts District Station -- all four lines serve the station.