If you’re ready for a little fa la la la boost of holiday spirit, the events celebrating Christmas in Hendersonville, NC should do the trick. The Hendersonville, NC Christmas parade is one of the most festive we’ve been to, and the rest of the town’s holiday events are loaded with fun and cheer.
Our list includes some of the very best Christmas Hendersonville, NC events and our all-time favorites. Most of these events and things to do are actually totally free, so they’ll be easy on your budget. Here’s your guide to celebrating Christmas in Hendersonville, NC.
The Big Events: Christmas, Hendersonville, NC
Hendersonville really turns up the Christmas charm every year. This year, their season is Home for the Holidays and they are loaded up on free, family fun, beautiful downtown decorations, and lots of lights. Christmas is gorgeous up here, and these events are 100% worth the drive for locals and visitors alike.
Hendersonville Christmas Tree Lighting
Hendersonville Courthouse: November 24th, 2023, 5 to 8 pm
Kicking things off, it’s the Christmas Tree Lighting on November 24th, 2023 from 5 to 8 pm. Santa will arrive with Mrs. Claus to light the tree at about 6 pm. Kids will get to visit with Santa for free after he’s lit the tree, and there will also be free carriage rides. Downtown Hendersonville is beautiful at Christmas, and we can’t think of a more festive way to say hello to the Christmas season.
December 8th Holds a BIG Holiday Celebration in Hendersonville
Downtown Hendersonville, North Carolina
Old Fashioned Christmas has been postponed to December 8th, 2023 (from December 1st)
What comes to mind when you think of a holiday Christmas small-town celebration? Whatever just popped into your head, it’s probably happening in Hendersonville. There are several simultaneous events and happenings occurring all along Main Street and most of it will be free. From an Old Fashioned Christmas with songs and shopping, to visits with Santa, cookies, cocoa, and carriage rides, you’ll find it all in Downtown Hendersonville.
- Santa Claus in the Square: Bring your camera and take a free photo with Santa. You’ll also get to enjoy hot cocoa, games, and crafts. You’ll find Santa in front of the courthouse from 5 pm to 8 pm
- Live holiday performances, carolers, and festive music spread throughout Downtown Hendersonville
- Holiday Shopping: Tonight the shops are open late, so feel free to wander amongst the twinkling lights and holiday music while you find the perfect gifts for everyone on your list
- Free Carriage rides: Enjoy an Old Fashioned Christmas favorite and take a ride in a horse-drawn carriage down the beautifully lit and decorated Main Street. Rides begin at Historic Courthouse Plaza
The Hendersonville, NC Christmas Parade Might Be My Favorite Ever
Downtown Hendersonville, NC
December 2nd, 2023, 6 pm
If you are in need of Christmas cheer and you can only go to one event all season, the Downtown Hendersonville Christmas Parade should probably be that one event. Everyone from high school marching bands, to the fire department, the local plumber, and the llama farm come out to celebrate the season together with a giant parade, full of lights, floats, music, and more. You’ll get Christmas spirit thrown at you no matter where you look, in the best possible way. Of course, the parade ends with the final float carrying Santa straight from the North Pole.
Parent Tips for the Hendersonville, NC Christmas Parade
- Check the weather and dress warm if needed. We were pretty chilly last year. Especially if you’re coming from a town in nearby Upstate, SC, don’t forget that it’s colder in Hendersonville.
- Arrive early for a good seat along Main Street. Pick up something delicious to eat and enjoy while you’re sitting out along the street waiting for the parade to start. Black Bear Coffee and Mike’s on Main are two good places to grab a bite to eat to go.
- Of course you could also bring a picnic dinner and a thermos full of cocoa to enjoy while you wait!
- Bring a bag for candy passed out during the parade.
Linda’s Plants and Shrubs
We were visiting Linda’s and saw them setting up their 2023 Christmas Haybale maze! Check back soon for dates and details. In the meantime, you can read all about last year’s holiday maze at Linda’s Plants and Shrubs.
Awesome & Free Things to Do for Christmas: Hendersonville, NC
One of the things I absolutely love about Hendersonville is all the free things to do any time of the year. But at Christmas time, they really take the cake. We’ve already covered the free opportunities to see Santa and carriage rides, but there’s so much more!
December 2nd, 2023 Free pictures with Santa at Ace Hardware. We LOVE free pictures with Santa and this time he’ll be at Carolina Ace Hardware with Paula Roberts Photography for FREE photos, plus cookies, cider and candy canes. Visit Santa between 11 am and 2 pm.
December 2nd and 3rd, 2023, Go skating for free! And that includes the skate rentals. It’s an iceless rink that allows for skating no matter the weather. Find it at 85 Howard Gap Road in Fletcher. The rink will be open from 3 to 6 pm on the 2nd and from 1 to 4 pm on the 3rd. December 2nd will also have a festival event including vendors, live music, and inflatables.
December 16th, 2023, Mountain Fresh Orchards is bringing their Apple Express Train downtown for free Holly Jolly Train Rides down Main Street. In addition to the holiday train rides, the orchard will also have their delicious baked goods available for sale. Hop aboard the train at the Courthouse Square in Downtown Hendersonville.
December 22nd, 2023, Christmas Sing Along at The Buzz. The Apple Country String Band will be at The Buzz playing all your favorite Christmas songs and everyone is invited to sing along. If you’ve never visited The Buzz, this sober bar and coffee shop offers unique mocktails and lots of delicious coffee beverages in an alcohol-free environment. They’re on our list of favorite coffee shops in Hendersonville, NC.
November 24th through December 31st, 2023, Visit Marked Tree Vineyards for free holiday lights and decorations. You can hike or drive through the lights at the vineyard for free. You can also enjoy their Wine with Winter Wonder series of live holiday music on Saturday nights. Reservations are recommended for the live music events. Visit the Marked Tree Vineyards website for information closer to December.
623 Deep Gap Road, Flat Rock
All holiday season: Find the Peppermint Bears in Downtown Hendersonville. Visit the Hendersonville Welcome Center to pick up a brochure and then get hunting through Henersonville’s downtown businesses. Once you find at least 12 bears, you can bring your brochure back to the visitors center and drop it in the mailbox to win a prize.
November 24th, 2023- January 7th, 2024: E.L.F’s Holiday Light Show offers a free family holiday light show annually. This year they are taking donations for the Blue Ridge Humane Society. This family has been running these light shows in Hendersonville since 2019 and is bringing new lights and props to the show in 2023.
Worth the Drive: More Christmas Fun Near Hendersonville
Winter Lights – This popular light show at the NC Arboretum in Asheville is a walk-through light experience unlike any other! The show runs from November 17, 2023 – December 31, 2023 nightly from 6 pm – 10:30 pm.
2023 Festival of Trees Greenville, SC: Come see the holiday trees on display from November 17th through December 25th, 2023 at the Hyatt Regency Downtown, the Courtyard Greenville Downtown, and the Hampton Inn & Suites River Place.