DOWNTOWN CLEVELAND – Downtown Cleveland is the place to be when Winterfest, presented by Huntington, kicks off the holiday season on Saturday, November 28, under the chandelier in Playhouse Square.
Winterfest is a free, family event for Clevelanders of all ages to experience the holiday magic of the season. Downtown will be bustling with activities for families throughout the day, beginning at 10 a.m., including free horse-drawn carriage rides, a variety of live entertainment, time-honored traditions, tasty treats and more. Activities in Winterfest Village in Playhouse Square start at 1 p.m.
Evening festivities commence with the much-anticipated ceremonial lighting of Downtown, which starts at 5 p.m. in Playhouse Square. The lighting of the tree will feature lively musical performances, fireworks and, of course, an appearance from Santa.
“There is no place that shines quite like Downtown Cleveland during Winterfest – it’s the perfect event that offers something for every member of your family,” said Joe Marinucci, president and CEO of Downtown Cleveland Alliance. “This annual celebration brings family and friends together to experience the growth and vibrancy of Downtown Cleveland, while embracing the history and holiday traditions that are unique to our city.”
Holiday festivities will begin in Playhouse Square, but visitors can follow the holiday lights down Euclid Avenue to take in everything Downtown has to offer during Winterfest:
- Winterfest Village in Playhouse Square will be bustling with holiday entertainment starting at 1 p.m. Take a walk across the street to the Allen Theatre to admire the Festival of Trees in the lobby.
- Again this year, Winterfest shares the day with Small Business Saturday. Start holiday shopping at the Holiday Pop-Up Shop in Playhouse Square, and make your way to shop local retailers with the Cleveland Bazaar at the 5th Street Arcades.
- Stop by East 4th Street to enjoy music, holiday bowling, delicious foods and warm holiday drinks for all ages.
- As you continue to make your way down Euclid Avenue, don’t miss the one-of-a-kind Gingerbread House Display at the Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland. Stay for seasonal drinks and enjoy dinner in the MUSE restaurant.
- In Tower City, visitors can warm up while getting a head start on their holiday shopping. Children can enjoy Holiday Express Train Rides, Kringel’s Inventionasium, Bruce the Talking Spruce, the Toy Solider and Fairy Godmother holiday show, and listen to performances by Old Stone Church Choir.
- The Cleveland Public Library will be starting off the season with toy trains in the lobby and will also host a holiday-themed family music program and children’s activities throughout the day.
- Outside the library, take a free ride on a horse-drawn carriage for a unique view of Downtown Cleveland’s historic architecture.
Plus, Downtown Cleveland’s walkability and access to public transit like the RTA make it easy for families to enjoy all the sights and sounds during Winterfest. And later in the evening, adults can enjoy wine, beer and cuisine from downtown restaurants at the 6th annual Winter Wine & Ale Fest 925 Euclid. Tickets are $65 and include parking.
Downtown Cleveland Alliance (DCA) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to building a dynamic downtown. By working with property owners and neighborhood based partners, DCA is able to provide economic development opportunities, business attraction and retention efforts, the Clean & Safe Ambassador Program as well as strategic marketing initiatives for Downtown Cleveland. In June 2014, DCA unveiled Step Up Downtown, a vision and tactical plan that sets the course for the future of Downtown Cleveland. The five-year strategy is available to read here.