5 Festive Events in Tuscaloosa this Holiday Season

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in the city of champions! The holiday season is the most wonderful time of year in Tuscaloosa (other than football season, of course). We love any cause for a city-wide celebration, especially when it fills our streets with holly jolly cheer. And because we never do anything halfway, we channel our legendary spirit into celebrating the holiday season with festive events and local traditions that turn our town merry and bright. If you’ll be treating yourself to a stay at WestGate this season, check out our favorite holiday happenings (they’re not far from your front door)!

The Tuscaloosa Tinsel Trail

This beloved holiday tradition fills the heart of Tuscaloosa with twinkling lights and Christmas cheer as more than 200 festive trees take over Government Plaza. The trees are sponsored and decorated by local businesses, organizations, and individuals, and awards are given to the most popular designs. Don’t miss the grand opening on Monday, November 20th, when Santa himself stops by to take in the trees and a holiday flourish of music, refreshments, activities and more! The 2023 Tinsel Trail will deck the halls through the New Year and is free to attend for all ages. Proceeds benefit Tuscaloosa’s One Place, a local family resource center. 

Holidays on the Plaza

We may not get snow, but we do have ice! Strap on a pair of skates and glide your heart out at Holidays on the Plaza, Tuscaloosa’s own ice-skating rink and winter wonderland. The event opens on November 24th, 2023 and slides right through the season until January 15th, 2024. Tickets are $15 per person and include your skate rental and full rink access during operating hours. Take the whole family on Tuesdays in December to score discounted tickets!

West Alabama Christmas Parade

The 47th Annual West Alabama Christmas Parade will roll down Greensboro Avenue at 6:30pm on Monday, December 4. This historic parade is one of the biggest in the state and fills our downtown streets with decorated floats, marching bands, holiday characters and more. This year’s theme is “A Hometown Christmas,” so expect to feel right at home among our holiday festivities. 

Dickens Downtown

On December 5, head to nearby Northport for a family celebration full of Christmas cheer. Based on A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, the annual event includes live Christmas carols, snow machines, artist demonstrations, and a visit from Father Christmas himself. The festival is held on Main Avenue in Historic Downtown Northport and lasts until 8 p.m.. Admission is free.


Home for the Holidays – The Sounds of Triumph

Can’t pass up a good Christmas carol? Take holiday music to new heights at TSO’s annual holiday concert on December 11th at 7pm. Located in Moody Concert Hall, this festive celebration is one of West Alabama’s favorite holiday traditions and will include highlights from Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker,” as well as Maestro Flatt’s famous holiday sing-a-long and more familiar tunes to get you in the spirit of the season. 

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