Holiday Dining

Note: Please call each restaurant to verify information below before you head there.

Liberty Taproom & Grill in the Vista

(803) 461-4677  |  828 Gervais St, Columbia, SC 29201

Liberty means many things to many different people. It is a celebration of the great American farmer and the rich bounty he puts on our tables. It is a celebration of America’s melting pot of rich ethnic cooking styles. It is a celebration of the resurgence of the “hancrafted-brewing” style of the pre-prohibition small American brewery. It is a celebration of life, family and the pursuit of happiness. So bring us your hungry, your thirsty and fun-loving, we’ll send you home refreshed and fulfilled. Ring in the New Year at Liberty!

Liberty Vista NYE Dinner Event
Christmas Eve: 10 AM – 4 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.

Ruth's Chris

Ruth’s Chris Steak House

803.212.6666 | 924-A Senate Street at the Hilton Columbia Center

We’ve said time and time again that nothing says special occasion quite like Ruth’s Chris Steak House does. Open over the holidays, so you can celebrate with them all season long with delicious dishes that will set your taste buds ablaze.

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Christmas Day: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Celebration Surf & Turf

Let yourself be a little “shellfish” this holiday season with mouthwatering steak and lobster specials at Ruth’s Chris Steak House.  Available now through January 3rd. Visit for additional information!

Celebrate the holidays with the perfect surf and turf combination:
our signature 8 oz. petite filet paired with a crabmeat-stuffed cold water lobster tail.

A second celebratory entree duo that is sure to please: our 16 oz. USDA Prime well-marbled ribeye paired with a crabmeat-stuffed cold water lobster tail.

holiday cheer from Ruths CThis New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day dine with Ruth’s Chris and start out the new year right! Don’t let this celebration go by without something special…and steak from Ruth’s Chris is something extra special.  Available December 30th – January 3rd. Click here for additional information.

New Year’s Eve: 11:00 AM – 12:00 Midnight
New Year’s Day: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM

New Year’s Prix Fixe Menu, $65.95 per person before tax and gratuity | wine pairing available for $23 supplement

Enjoy a festive meal with your choice of starter, entree and personal side, served alongside our featured dessert duo.

Gervais & Vine

803.799.VINE (8463) | 620-A Gervais St. Columbia, SC 29201

Gervais and Vine selection with white wine.jpg
Need a break from all the shopping and hub-bub?  Why not break at G&V, where you can relax on Wednesdays for their drop-in wine tastings? From 5:30pm – 7pm, you can enjoy 4 wine-tastings and a nice little cheese plate for just 8 bucks!

Crêpes et Croissants

(803) 462-4779 | 1465 Sumter St, Columbia, SC 29201

DSC_0267Their menu is amazing from their Chicken Salad Croissant Sandwich to various crepes such as Paris, Turkey, and Wales. Laurent, owner of Crêpes et Croissants, came from his native France to bring his Master Crêpe Maker’s “Savoir Faire” to the South, so don’t miss out this special, holiday season. You deserve the best pastries, croissants, and crepes that they have to offer, as you step into the New Year.

Christmas Eve: 7:00 AM – 2:30 PM
New Years Eve: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Ariana’s Restaurant

(803) 796-4430  |  1720 Sunset Blvd. West Columbia, SC

DSC_0345.JPGSpend lunch or dinner this holiday season eating the delicious offerings from Moe’s kitchen at Ariana’s in West Columbia. Call for reservations! Definitely going to be opened for lunch on Christmas Eve, so stop in and have some Ariana’s to finish out the year of 2015 on a good tasting note.

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.

Old Mill Brewpub

(803) 785-2337  |  711 E Main St, Lexington, SC 29072

DSC_0776.JPGSavor these December days – don’t let them slip through your fingers at Old Mill Brewpub in Lexington, as they offer inside and outside seating! Lunch, dinner, or just drinks — they’ve got you covered! Gather your people close to you and head on over to the best restaurant in Lexington as you intentionally strive to cherish these special days.

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.

Blue Marlin

(803) 799-3838 | 1200 Lincoln Street, Columbia, SC 29201

DSC_1321.JPGChristmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM, 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.


(803) 931-0700 | 807 Gervais St #103, Columbia, SC 29201

sakitumi sushi

Need a low key place to hang out on New Years Eve? Enjoy delicious food with great discounts and enjoy watching the ball drop on one of their 4 large, flat screen televisions. They are sure to have an excellent champagne special and don’t forget about their awesome Thursday night supper special. 50 cent Sushi Pieces & $3 Pints! Enjoy your sushi “by the piece” for only 50¢ each. Choose from Cali, Philly or Spicy Salmon and wash them down with any one of their 12 import/craft brew pints.

New Years Eve: 5:00 PM – Ball Drop {Though the kitchen will close around 10:30 PM}

Liberty on the Lake

(803) 667-9715  |  1602 Marina Rd, Irmo, SC 29063

Located just 30 minutes from downtown Columbia on the sunny shores of Lake Murray in Irmo, SC Liberty Tap Room is an upscale casual dining restaurant serving traditional American cuisine with a twist in a fun, modern atmosphere. Enjoy our elevated outdoor seating for killer views of the lake, just in time for boating season!

With 48 beers on tap, including our own line of microbrews, we have a brew to satisfy even the pickiest of beer snobs.

Liberty Tap Room specializes in all-American food made from the freshest ingredients, like our Certified Angus Beef® burgers, juicy steaks, and fresh-baked pizzas. Stop by with the whole family for dinner!

DSC_3837.JPGChristmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.

Pearlz Oyster Bar

(803) 661-7741  |  936 Gervais St, Columbia, SC 29201

Pearlz Oyster Bar features an assorted mix of raw shellfish, local seafood, Lowcountry recipes and regional favorites. Their raw bar offers a variety of oysters and fresh seasonal shellfish.

pearlz oystersChristmas Eve: 4:00 PM – 9:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.

Kaminsky’s Dessert Cafe

(803) 550-9979| 930 Gervais Street, Columbia, SC 29201

DSC_1072For your special occasion this year visit Kaminsky’s and enjoy the dreamiest and most delicious desserts Columbia ever did see. If it were up to us we would direct Santa to stop here for the best cookies in Columbia, but he tends to be pretty busy this time of year. We know it’s a busy time of year with the hustle and the bustle of the season right at your heels, but slow down and savor each bite that you try at Kaminsky’s one delicious moment at a time. Good coffee, great cakes (for your holiday party?), yummy pies, amazing cookies, even more amazing holiday martinis and wonderful ‘adult’ milkshakes.

Rioz Brazilian Steakhouse

(803) 708-3151 | 410 Columbiana Dr, Columbia, SC 29212

Best of RiozRioz is the perfect place for family and friend gatherings this holiday season. Deliciousness is an understatement when it comes to all of the mouthwatering meat options that Brazilian cowboys bring around to the tables for your taste buds satisfaction. An authentic Brazilian steakhouse that you don’t want to miss this holiday season.

Christmas Eve: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
*Taking reservations until 9:00 PM
New Years Day Celebration: $20.16 Dinner Buffet (opening at 4:00 PM)

After Christmas Day Special - Rioz

Cellar on Greene

(803) 343-3303 | 2001 Greene St, Columbia, SC 29205


Closed December 24 – December 27. You know something really great about Cellar on Greene? They don’t take reservations! So, if you are flexible and want to arrive with your party simply when you do — then this is the place for you as they cater to the ones who make last minute plans.

Their December Giant Wine Sale & Tasting’s will actually be held EVERY single Saturday in December, leading up to Christmas in anticipation. Saturday, December 5, December 12, and December 19 from 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM don’t miss tasting over 30 new wines with them! The cost is $5 per person, waived with a 2 bottle purchase.

Solstice Kitchen

(803) 788-6966 | 841 Sparkleberry Ln #4, Columbia, SC 29229

Best Vertical SolsticeClosed December 24 – December 27. Solstice Kitchen does take reservations, so be sure to make yours now and plan ahead for a great night.

Mr. Friendly’s

(803) 254-7828 | 2001 Greene St, Columbia, SC 29205
DSC_3699Closed December 24 – December 27. Mr. Friendly’s does not take reservations, as it caters to those who make the last minute, smart decision to eat out and forget about the dishes! Mr. Friendly’s will feature a special New Years Eve Menu too.

M Kitchen

(803) 764-0558 | 340 Columbiana Drive, Columbia, SC 29212

imagejpeg_0M Kitchen is now open on Columbiana Drive, just in time for the holidays! Relax in this peaceful oasis, surreally located directly in the middle of all the hustle and bustle of Harbison.  Cool greens and warm woods are inviting… take a break from your holiday errands and shopping, and treat yourself to a fabulous lunch or dinner, prepared under the loving direction of chef Michelle Wang.   M Kitchen is her 10th restaurant (part of the Miyo’s group) and here she has put to work all she has learned during her amazing culinary career   Destined to become the favorite of discerning guests, M Kitchen is not stuffy or formal… your children will enjoy it as much as you! Fresh. Asian. Modern.

Operating Hours:

Sunday – Thursday: 11:30am – 10pm
Friday & Saturday: 11:30am – 10:30pm

Sato Japanese Steak & Sushi House

(803) 782-1064  |  1999 N Beltline Blvd, Columbia, SC 29204

Sato Sushi Bar

Are you tired of having the same old boring dinner? This December are you looking to mix things up a bit? Why not try SATO’s fully stocked sushi bar! Their sushi bar displays a wide selection of delicious options. They say whether you are new to sushi or you’re a sushi expert, you will love their sushi bar — see if they’re right. For beginners, their sushi bar offers a large selection of sushi, so you can try different kinds to discover your favorites. They have the most popular sushi as well as unique sushi you will only find here. Between their extensive menu (for you non-sushi folks too!) and their amiable, professional staff, they will be sure to make your experience as enjoyable as possible this holiday season.

They use fresh ingredients, mixed with delectable sauces and seasonings that create a one of a kind meal that is sure to please. Yes please! For your next holiday event or holiday get together, keep their banquet room in mind also. No matter the size of the group, they can help. Call (803) 782-1064 for availability. 

Christmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM & 5:00 PM – 9:30 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.

Tombo Grille

4517 Forest Drive, Columbia, SC 29206 | 803.782.9665

Christmas Eve: 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM. Reservations are recommended because who doesn’t love this neighborhood restaurant in Columbia? They serve only the freshest of foods and are sure to set your taste buds ablaze this December. They will have a special menu for Christmas Eve, so don’t miss it.

New_Years_Eve_DinnerNew Year’s Eve Dinner at Tombo Grille

Enjoy Tombo Grille’s special New Year’s Eve Dinner Menu that is sure to start your New Year off on a good foot. Reservations recommended for the night of December 31st as everyone in town knows how amazing the food that comes out of their kitchen is. Start the New Year off right and enjoy Tombo Grille one bite at a time.

Mediterranean Cafe


(803) 356-6294 | 327 West Main Street, Lexington, SC

What do you hope for when you try a restaurant for the first time?  High quality food… excellent service… decent pricing?  You’ll find all three here and you need all three during this special, busy time of year. This friendly little cafe in the heart of Lexington is one of the town’s best restaurants and would be a great place to add some spice to your holiday plans. Azmi Jebali, owner and chef, has been cooking up excellence here for the past 12 years. Their menu offers a fusion of foods from around the Mediterranean – an eclectic mix of what is best from the region.  Choose from a wide selection this holiday season that includes falafel, baba ghannouj, hummus, kofta steak, pork chops, steaks, chicken, seafood and vegetarian dishes. Azmi grows some of his produce and purchases most of his other ingredients from local producers. They are also now offering a wonderful array of desserts including their popular Red Raspberry Chocolate Layer Cake, lovely cheesecakes and a special cake-of-the-week! Closed on December 24, 25, 26, 27, and the 31st, but open New Years Day. This December warm yourself up with Azmi’s delicious dishes and kick start your New Year the right way.

Wasabi Japanese Restaurant

(803) 736-9687 | 4561 Hard Scrabble Rd, Columbia, SC 29229

Wasabi can be described in two words: heavenly sushi. Treat yourself this holiday season to some of the best sushi in Columbia.
Wasabi Sushi

Columbo’s Double Tree by Hilton

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day: 7:00 AM – Midnight
Christmas buffet featuring Prime Rib and Carved Turkey will be served from 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM; $34 for adults, $27 for military and seniors over 65, $15 under 10 years, and free for children under 5. Reservations required.
(803) 731-0300 | 2100 Bush River Road, Columbia, SC


Christmas Eve from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Christmas Day from 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
All Locations in Columbia
Click here to find one closest to you

Flying Saucer

Christmas Eve from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM & Christmas Day from 5:00 PM – Midnight
(803) 256-2055 | 931 Senate St, Columbia, SC 29201

Wet Willie’s

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM & Christmas Day: 5:00 PM – 2:00 AM
(803) 779-5650  |  800 Gervais St. Columbia, SC

Lizards Thicket

Christmas Eve {breakfast only}: 6:00 AM – Noon. Closed on Christmas Day.
Click here to find one closest to you


Christmas Eve & Christmas Day {Always 24 Hours}
All Locations in Columbia
Click here to find one closest to you

Cracker Barrel

Christmas Eve: 6:00 AM – 2:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 731-0672   |   Outlet Pointe Shopping Center, 2208 Bush River Rd, Columbia, SC 29210


Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
Click here to find one closest to you

Rockaway Athletic Club

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM {Bar + Kitchen}
Christmas Day: 4:00 PM – Midnight
{Only Bar Open}
(803) 256-1075   |   2719 Rosewood Dr, Columbia, SC 29205

Holiday Workshops 2015

Essex Ad

 Kids Holiday Pottery Workshop: December 8th-10thfamily-med-centers-MCC

From 4:00PM – 6:00PM Create a plate for Santa’s cookies and several ornaments. participants will build projects on the first day, and glaze on day two. everything will be fired and ready for pick-up before Christmas. Ages 8-12. $45. Held at Crooked Creek Park.

Riverbanks Zoo and Garden

Backyard Buds: Nature’s Ornaments
Thursday December 10th from 10:00AM – 10:45AM Make natural decorations for the winter season and discover the plants that give the holidays their taste, smell and glow. $6 per child (with one adult) per class. Plus admission for general public. Ages 2-5. Register online.

Ongoing at Lexington County Parks and Recreation Leisure Centers

Lexington Leisure Center
Adult Ceramics: Monday and Wednesday from 10:00AM – Noon and from 5:00PM – 9:00PM $1 per class plus cost of supplies and materials. Ages 18+
Tri-City Leisure Center
Carolina Woodcarvers: First and Third Tuesday each month from 7:00PM – 8:30PM $2 per class.

village-SL-xmas20152Ongoing at Richland County Adult Activity Center

These classes offer a fun new craft that anyone can do. You can make a special holiday gift or just learn a new hobby…

Crocheting: Thursdays from 10:00AM – 12:00PM. Free. Have you ever wanted to learn how to crochet? Their instructor will help you learn.

Basket Weaving: Tuesdays from 10:00AM – 12:00PM. $10/month. Would you like to learn the art of basket weaving to create beautiful works of art using pine straw and other natural materials?

Quilt Making: Fridays 10:00AM – 1:00PM. $60/month. Would you like to make a quilt to keep you warm and toasty this winter? You will be taught the basics of quilt making (including pattern making, fabric choices, piecing, sandwiching, basting, quilting, tacking and binding). The quilt will be finished with a sleeve and personal label and will measure 40-50″.

Christmas Columbia | Holiday Fun

Polar Express 4D Experience – Now – Jan 3

You’re invited to an extraordinary 4D adventure for the holiday season! A doubting young boy takes a train ride to the North Pole, and embarks on a journey of self-discovery about life. The SC State Museum’s 4D Theater provides a 3-D visual experience with the fourth dimension of environmental experiences like blasts of air, vibrating seats and water spray. The only permanent theater of its kind in the state! Showing in the Rev. Dr. Solomon Jackson, Jr. 4D Interactive Theater. Visit for showtimes and tickets.


The Star of Bethlehem – Now – Jan 3

The SC State Museum’s 55-foot digital dome planetarium experience takes viewers back to Jerusalem and Bethlehem to investigate ideas about the “Christmas Star”. Presents historical and scientific facts to unravel this 2,000-year old mystery through an audio visual display that features popular Christmas carols! The planetarium also showcases exciting astronomy shows, entertaining programs focused on art, history or natural history and laser light shows set to music of the Beatles, Pink Floyd, U2 and more. Visit for showtimes and tickets.

“Sprinkle red and green confetti in your Christmas card envelopes.” – from The Little Book of Christmas Joys

Trustus Theatre Presents: The Great American Trailer Park Christmas-Now- Dec 19th

The holiday sequel to one of your favorite comedies is finally here! Christmas time at North Florida’s Armadillo Acres means everyone’s filled with warmth and beer. But when a freak bout of amnesia strikes Darlene the trailer park Scrooge due to some improperly wired decorations, neighborly love is put to the test. With Betty, Lin and Pickles on hand to amp up the fracas and festivity, this all-new, all-trailer-park musical is just as much of a cat-fightin’, sun-worshippin’, chair-throwin’ good time as the original — but with tinsel and Keg Nog. For more information about showtimes, visit

“When you think you have enough lights on your tree, add two more strands.” – from The Little Book of Christmas Joys

EdVenture’s Snowville – Now – Jan 11

Come and enjoy a frosty fun time! Admission into Snowville is free with your ticket into EdVenture.  Their most popular seasonal exhibit is cooler than ever this year! Crawl through an ice tunnel, climb a snow-capped mountain, sled down a snowy hill that’s 25 feet long and sure to give thrills to all, or visit the Penguin Observation Station. It’s all in Snowville! Visit or call (803) 779-3100 for more information.

“Choose a Christmas tree that’s a little too big for the room.” – from The Little Book of Christmas Joys

Main Street Ice  | Now Open 

Grab your family and friends, and head down to Boyd Plaza for the opening day of Main Street ICE! The City of Columbia’s outdoor ice skating rink, located at the corner of Main and Hampton streets, returns for another year of fun for the whole family. Runs until Jan. 16. More info.

Shandon UMC Events

Celebrate the Season Holiday Fair |Now – Dec 20

The weekend Holiday Fair at Old Santee Canal State Park offers families and friends a place to gather and celebrate the holidays. Children will enjoy free visits with Santa Claus and loads of fun activities in his workshop. There’s also marshmallow roasting, over-sized holiday cards by local students, and live entertainment. More information here.


“Don’t try to do everything yourself. Remember, even Santa needs helpers.” – from The Little Book of Christmas Joys


“Remember that peace on earth starts with peace in our homes and in our hearts.” – from The Little Book of Christmas Joys 

Fine Arts Center of Kershaw Presents: 2015 Holiday Sales Show – Dec 4-16

Join us for our annual Holiday Sales Show and shop to your heart’s content! Browse through some of the best handmade items around! Jewelry, stained glass, pottery, food items, handcrafted wood items, and so much more! Held at the Douglas-Reed House. For more information, visit

“Don’t count calories from December 15th through January 2nd.” –from The Little Book of Christmas Joys

Santa’s Gingerbread Jamboree – Dec 5 , 12, 19 Santa'a Gingerbread Jamboree

Visit with the Snow Princess while you wait your turn to sit with Santa and tell him all of your Christmas wishes. While he’s making his list and checking it twice, we’ll snap a photo with you and the jolly old elf! Santa’s helpers will be on hand to help you decorate a gingerbread cookie or do some holiday crafting that will get your Christmas spirit singing! This special yuletide celebration is FREE with museum admission. Photo packages will be available for purchase. 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM. For info, visit the EdVenture Children’s Museum website.

Essex Ad

Columbia City Ballet’s Nutcracker – Dec 12, 13 & 19, 20

The Columbia City Ballet’s “Nutcracker” performance is the Koger Center’s longest consecutively running annual arts event. It is a holiday treat for all ages and is the perfect event to bring your entire family to. These performances will be December 12th at 3:00 PM and 7:30 PM, December 13th at 3:00 PM, December 19th at 3:00 PM and 7:30 PM, and December 20th at both 3:00 PM and 7:30PM. There will be seven snow-filled performances, including 4 matinees. Tickets range from $20 to $45 and are available at the Koger Center Ticket Office and online at

Lexington County Christmas Sampler

Christmas Carol Walking Tour – Dec 17

Sure you may have heard the story of Ebeneezer Scrooge and the three ghosts who visited him one Christmas night. However, if you have never heard the story as told by storyteller Tim Lowry, you have never really heard the story! Join Summerville Dream on December 17th, 2015 at either 5:30 p.m. or 7:00 p.m. for a memorable evening of ghosts and Christmas cheer! Visit for more info.

Rioz NYE Ad

Candy Cane Hunt – Dec 19candy cane1

There will be a Candy Cane Hunt for ages 2-8 at Crooked Creek Park on December 19th from 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM. Santa and his elves will be hiding candy canes along the trail at Crooked Creek Park for kids to find in this one-of-a-kind candy cane adventure. There will also be prize candy canes hidden along the trail. Bring a basket or bag to collect candy canes. This wonderful Christmas hunt is a great event to bring kids to. For more information visit 1098 Old Lexington Highway, Chapin, SC | 803.345.6181

Merry Christmas Columbia-frankies

Winterfest – Dec 19 – 23 & Dec 26 – Jan 3

Spend your winter break enjoying a variety of family friendly activities at the SC State Museum during the museum’s two-week WinterFest celebration. Programs vary each day and include activities such as “Holidays around the World” kick-off party, visits with Santa, performances by the Bright Star Touring Theatre, holiday crafts and more. For more information visit

SC Philharmonic

Christmas Eve Service at Shandon UMC

On Thursday, December 24th spend some time at Shandon UMC uplifting your soul. Inspiring services filled with beautiful greenery, wonderful music, glowing candlelight and warm fellowship. 3407 Devine Street | 803.256.8383

  • Traditional Communion Service – 2:00PM, Sanctuary
  • Family Service – 5:00PM, Sanctuary
  • LifeLine Contemporary Service: 7:00PM, Dunn-Smith Ministry Center
  • Communion & Candlelight Service: 9:00PM, Sanctuary

Swan Lake Fantasy of Lights

Frozen Sing-A-Long – Dec 30

On Wednesday, December 30th from 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM The State Museum presents Frozen Sing-A-Long, a magical evening to spark young guests’ imagination. During the event, guests will watch a special Sing-A-Long version of Disney’s Frozen, meet and greet with their favorite Frozen characters and enjoy crafts and activities. There will be light snacks and refreshments. “Frozen” costumes are highly encouraged. Frozen Sing-A-Long tickets are $15 per person and $12 for museum members. Space is limited, advance ticket purchase is recommended. Buy tickets here!


“Replace your shoelaces with a red one and a green one.” – from The Little Book of Christmas Joys 

Famously Hot New Year – Dec 31

Come out and experience South Carolina’s largest free New Year’s Eve party in downtown Columbia – Famously Hot New Year! Enjoy live entertainment from international performing arts icon Lauryn Hill! Other bands include Susto, Dead 27S and Colorblind. Countdown to 2015 with colossal fireworks and a fun street party. Over 26,000 people from all around attended this event last year, so don’t miss out and bring in the new year the right way!  For more information and updates about Famously Hot New Year 2015, visit


New Year’s Eve Gala at the Pickin’ Parlor – Dec 31

On Thursday, December 31, 7 PM – Friday, January 1, 2015, 1 AM. Join them on New Year’s Eve for a party of Pickin’ Parlor proportions! Classic country music and dancing! Featuring Bob Strickland and Freestyle; special guest Becky Starnes as Minnie Pearl! Dress to impress (optional), enjoy a great feast, non-alcholic champagne, party favors, and dance until 2016! Doors open at 7 PM. Tickets are $25 per person. Reserve your tickets before they’re all gone! CALL FOR TICKETS: 803.796.6477, between 10:00 AM and 7:00 PM Monday- Friday. Bill’s Music Shop & Pickin’ |  710 Meeting St, West Columbia, SC 29169

Amazingly Simple Decorating Ideas for 2015

Simple but Elegant… and FAST!

Want gorgeous festive rooms for the holidays, where all looks picture-perfect, but without spending a truckload of time or silver and green balls in clear glass vasecash?   “Some of the most beautiful decorating ideas involve very little money and not a lot of time either,” said Gigi Willetts of Decorating Den Interiors, my professional decorating pal as we sat at lunch recently. “You probably have many decorating items in your cabinets and closets right now… you just have to know what you’re looking for.”

Okay, Gigi… what am I looking for?village-SL-xmas20152

“First decide on an overall look or theme. Ideas: country charm, modern and eclectic, traditional, natural, or super-sparkly.  Let’s say you choose a theme like “country charm”.  Chances are you already have decor items that can be dressed up for the holidays.  Take your wooden rocking chair and drape a red or green plaid throw over it. (available at Macy’s for $15.99 or at JCPenney for $11.99)  Now tuck in a little stuffed Santa or small pillow with a country Christmas theme. Place a galvanized bucket or a other metal container beside the rocker and stuff with trims from your cut tree or garland, some pine cones from your yard and dress up with a big holiday bow. You’ll be amazed at how great that looks and you may not have had to buy one extra thing to make it happen.  Or if someone has modern tastes and their home is furnished with clean lines and little color, they can dress that up to create a magical wintry look. I have seen people add clear glass bowls and vases to coffee table and end table tops, and fill them with silver Christmas balls, satin, smooth and sparkling… and maybe one accent color that might pick up on a color in the room… and that can be all it takes to make a living room look spectacular.  I always suggest that you set those type of groupings in 3’s.  Most people do have glass bowls and vases… they may have to buy the silver ornaments, but those are pretty inexpensive. (WalMart prices start at $16 for 96 balls).  And there is a trend toward natural decorations for the holidays, which is really easy.  Mini balsam trees can be dressed up with tiny bows and pine cones (available at for $22) and used for table tops, on guest bath vanities and on kitchen counters. Of course, get a cut tree and decorate with natural ornaments like dried slices of citrus fruit, pine cones with berry wraps, sprays of bittersweet… look around your yard or neighborhood for interesting items and add red bows – they’ll make anything look like Christmas!”  Contact Gigi if you’d like a professional decorator to help you with your next remodel or redecorating project: or (803) 463-3000.
Decorating Den ad MCC

southern_bedding_luxury_and_comfort_2015_adSouthern Bedding – Comfy Bedding for Your Guests and You

Allow your holiday guests the pleasure of sleeping on a Southern Bedding mattress this year. So absolutely wonderful for comfort and peace that your guests may contact Southern Bedding themselves and order a mattress for their own home! It happens often. And that’s how this little gem of a local business operates – mostly building its business by word-of-mouth. The mattresses are built right here in Columbia, using the finest materials. Their pillow-tops are reversible, doubling the mattress life! Call Karen today and talk it over (803-765-9630), or go see her at the factory showroom at 400 Calhoun St. (behind the Staybridge Suites on Huger St.) Visit the Southern Bedding website here.


A Favorite Shop for the HolidaysSnowman decoration

Christmas is all about love, family, friends, joy and beauty.  White Rose Artisans Boutique in West Columbia was borne as an expression of those very things.  Martha Wise, shop-keep, inherited an eye for things of beauty from her late mother, Elouise, who ran an antiques shop for many years.  Step inside this charming little cottage on Meeting Street in West Columbia, and you are in for a treat… every nook and cranny of each room is decorated with true style and with an eye for the whimsical and unusual.  You’ll surely find something for everyone on your list this year, and you’ll have a blast buying there too!  From women’s clothing and accessories to Gamecock-themed decor to delightful garden accents… you’re going to love it!  813 Meeting St.  Open Tues – Saturday. Visit the website here or see the Facebook page.

4 leather reclining chairs from Ethan Allen

Gorgeous Leather Seating from Ethan Allen

When guests come by for holiday festivities this season, allow them the honor of sitting in your new gorgeous Ethan Allen leather chairs! Leather upholstery fits with any style… and Ethan Allen will help you choose styles and colors that will put the WOW in your living room! And you will save 20% off all Ethan Allen leather furniture during November 2015! Whether you purchase a pair as a gift to yourselves (really… can you think of anything better?) or you gift one to your significant other, the Ethan Allen trademark shows you truly care about comfort, style and durability. You’ll pass these chairs on to your kids!  Visit the Ethan Allen website for 20% off leather


Christmas Concerts

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Shandon UMC Events

December 15

The Chamber Choir of Kershaw County will be performing a Christmas Concert at the Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County in the Wood Auditorium. This choir of musicians ages 11 and up is directed by Dr. Susan Wyatt. They will be singing some of the best holiday sounds of the season. This concert is on December 15th at 7:00 PM. Tickets are $5 and will be available at the door. For more information, visit

Sing Along Messiah

December 17

A Christmas Carol Packed with laughter, pageantry and gorgeous costumes, all the memorable details of Dickens’ 1843 same-titled novel spring to life in this amazing concert! Performed at the Newberry Opera House on December 17th at 3PM. Tickets are $46 and can be purchased online or at the Box Office. For more information visit or call (803) 276-6264.

Tis the Season to be Jazzy Celebrate the season with Richland Library Literary Resident Eboniramm, accompanied by an ensemble swinging with the sounds of notable holiday jazz songs. Main Branch. 6:30-8pm. More here.

SC Philharmonic

December 19

Ronnie McDowell & Friends, Classic Country Christmas, will be performing at the Newberry Opera House on December 19th at 7PM. These artists take Chtristmas to a whole new level with six decades of hits and over $15 million in record sales! Featuring country artists Ken Mellons, Deborah Allen, Tommy Cash, Amber Hayes, Mandy Barnett and Teea Goans. Tickets are $26 and can be purchased online or at the Box Office. For more information, visit or call (803) 276-6264.


HiResDecember 20

There will be a Christmas Concert at Shandon United Methodist Church on December 20th at 5:00 PM. Classical Christmas music will be played by Eddie Huss & Friends. This event will take place in the Sanctuary and is open free to the public. Any donations will benefit “Imagine No Malaria.” For more info, visit, or call (803) 256-8383.

December 21

Columbia’s annual Sing-Along Messiah will once again be celebrated in Sing Along Messiahthe beautiful, historic sanctuary of Washington Street UMC on Monday, December 21st at 7:00 PM. Messiah, by G.F. Handel, is perhaps the best known and most popular sacred oratorio ever written.  In its entirety, it is comprised of 53 individual selections presented as orchestral symphonies, choruses, recitatives, and arias, divided into 3 sections.  Sing-Along Messiah includes all of Section 1 and “Hallelujah” from Section 2, so be sure you don’t miss out on this musical gift from Washington UMC. Sing-Along Messiah features a 20-member orchestra and a core choir to lead the singing of the choruses.

True to its name, Sing-Along Messiah patrons are invited to join in the singing of choruses, with no rehearsal required and everyone may stand, sit, sing, or listen in any combination that best fills their heart with the music of Messiah and the true meaning of Christmas. Sing-Along Messiah is an extraordinary night of worship – don’t miss it! To optimize seating, please arrive early.  Nearby parking, with directional signage, is readily available.  Scores are available for loan as you enter the Narthex. Admission is free but donations are requested. For additional information, about the event or choir participation, please visit the website,, or email event director Angela Powers at


December 23 

Palmetto Christmas. Parmalee, a top country band from NC, will be hitting the stage at Music Farm with opening band The Bluepickups. Benefit for Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital.  More here.

Rioz New Years Celebration Deal

December 31

NYE Celebration: A Masquerade  8PM. Bring your masque and dress to impress! Join the Dick Goodwin Big Band and a host of guest performers to welcome in the New Year! Music, dancing hors d’ oeuvres, desserts, wine and champagne..and fireworks at midnight! Price is $71. For more information visit

Famously Hot New Year. Ring in an #SCStrong New Year with a free concert by Ms. Lauryn Hill and fireworks show in downtown Columbia at SC’s largest NYE celebration. More here.

Holiday Markets 2015!

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30th Annual Junior League Holiday Market | December 2 – 6

Located in the Cantey Building on the State Fairgrounds from December 2nd through the 6th. There will be school choir groups performing throughout the market hours and some super fun special events that you don’t want to miss out on. This holiday market will have merchants and vendors selling all sorts of unique items, including personalized ornaments, jewelry, clothing, artwork, and much more. Market hours will be: December 3rd 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM, December 4th 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM, December 5th 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM, and Sunday, December 6th Noon – 5:00 PM . General admission tickets are $8 per person and include entry to all four days of the market during regular hours. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased online and at the door. Special events, such as Preview Party, Ladies Night Out, and PJs with Santa require tickets — click here! Visit for more info.
1200 Rosewood Drive, Columbia, SC 29201 | 803.252.4552


Midlands Clay Art Society Annual Holiday Sale | December 3 – 7

Held at Gallery 80808 at 808 Lady St. in the Vista. This is an incredibly diverse show from extraordinary potters who live right here in the Columbia area. Buy unique gifts that your friends and family will treasure and wonderful accents for your holiday decor. Vista Studios: 803-252-6134

Christmas at the Y Arts and Crafts Show + Kids Carnival | Dec 4

5:00 PM – 9:00 PM. Free to attend, so don’t miss out! Arts and crafts like last year, but a kid carnival aspect added in too. More activities and more fun for all. There will be arts and crafts vendor tables, pictures with Santa, concessions and much more! Held at the NorthWest Family YMCA in Irmo. All proceeds benefit the Y’s Annual Campaign, which gives children in the community the opportunity to participate in YMCA programs. Info here.

1501 Kennerly Rd, Irmo, SC 29063 | 803.407.8007


Christmas Craft Show – December 4 – 5

This show will feature over 100 exhibitors from all over the Southeast. Crafts for sale will include wreaths, wood furniture, paintings, baked goods, jewelry, holiday ornaments, ceramics, needlepoint creations, pottery and many other unique items. All items are handmade by crafters and are guaranteed to set your gift giving apart from others. The show hours are 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Friday and Saturday.  This is an indoor/outdoor show so dress warm if the weather is chilly. Admission and parking are free.  For more information call 803-642-7631 or click here.
Odell Weeks Activity Center {1700 Whiskey Rd, Aiken SC, 29803} | 803.642.7631


2015 Holiday Sales Show – December 4 – 16

At the Douglas Reed House in Camden, SC. Browse to your hearts content as you find some of the best handmade items around! Jewelry, stained glass, pottery, food items, handcrafted wood items, and so much more is awaiting you at this holiday market. Times/Dates Opened:

  • Friday-Saturday, December 4-5 at 10:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 6 at 1:30-6:00 p.m.
  • Monday-Saturday, December 7-12 at 10:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 13 at 1:30-6:00 p.m.
  • Monday-Wednesday (closing day) December 16 at 10:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m.

810 Lyttleton Street, Camden, SC 29020 | 803.425.7676

Essex Ad

Santa’s Market Craft Show | December 5mouth-blown-hand-painted-christmas-ornaments-christine-till

will be held from 8:30 AM to 2:00 PM at Seven Oaks Park on Leisure Lane in Columbia, SC. This craft show is a great place to go for holiday shopping, where you can find unique crafts ranging from handmade jewelry to painted ornaments and home decor. There is no admission fee, and concessions will be available for purchase. For more information, visit
200 Leisure Lane, Columbia, SC 29210 | 803.772.3336

Shandon UMC Events

Prosperity Shopper’s Walk | December 5

Starts at 5:30PM. Merchants have “open house” with lots of discounts!  Local entertainment, visits with Santa (bring your coupon from Spooktacular for a free photo), cookies, hot chocolate, and prize drawings are just a few things you will enjoy during the night.  Families gather to enjoy shopping and entertainment amidst luminary lined sidewalks and the sounds of Christmas all in the Town of Prosperity. For more information, call the Prosperity Town Hall at 803-364-2622, or visit


Advent Festival 2015: “From Darkness into Light” | December 6

At St. Martin’s-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church on Sunday, Dec. 6th from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM and after 10:30 service until 12:30pm in the Parish Hall. Join them for a morning of alternative gift-shopping. Baked and canned goods as well as handcrafted, artisan works made by members of the parish. Peruse our art gallery, too, for a gift for that very special someone. All proceeds benefit outreach education efforts for the parish. More events may be found here:
5220 Clemson Avenue, Columbia, SC 29206 | 803.787.0392

Lexington County Christmas Sampler

Christmas Sampler & Peddler Craft Shows | December 12 Christmas Peddler Craft Show

9:00 AM – 3:00 PM. This is the 26th year of these very popular and well-attended shows. Featuring 57 local and regional crafters. Come enjoy entertainment, door prizes and shopping. Canned food donations are accepted to benefit Lexington County Meals on Wheels. Free admission. Lexington & Tri City Leisure Centers. Visit for more info!
563 South Lake Drive, Lexington, SC 29072 | 803.359.4048 

Annual Holiday Church Bazaar | Dec 12

On Saturday, December 12th from 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM at Salem United Methodist Church. There will be numerous vendors such as: homemade wooden bowls, soy candles, soap, lots of jewelry, scarves, crafts, ornaments and much much more, along with Mary Kay, Tupperware, Avon, Pampered Chef, and Juice Plus. The youth will also have a big variety of homemade soups to raise money for their mission trip. Enjoy! More information here.
1321 Salem Church Road, Irmo, SC 29063 | 803.781.5262

Crafty Feast | Dec 13

Visit the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center on Sunday, December 13, 2015 from 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM for a handmade craft show with interesting items from all over the state. $3 per person, kids 10 and under free. More information here. (803) 545-0001 | 1101 Lincoln Street, Columbia, SC 29201

Christmas Tree Farms | Columbia, SC

Price’s Christmas Tree Farm


Eastern Red Cedar

sells a variety of trees including the Carolina Sapphire, Eastern Red Cedar, and Leyland Cypress. They are open everyday from November 21 to December 18. This farm also has beautiful wreaths and a gift shop and barn. Their hours are Monday-Thursday 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM, Friday-Saturday 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM, and Sunday 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM. They are located at 228 Maple Road Lexington, SC 29073. You can contact this tree farm at (803) 356-4005 or visit their Facebook page!

Hollow Creek Christmas Tree Farm


White Pine

is in Gilbert, SC. Open November 25 to December 20, this farm sells up to 10 different kinds of trees, including the Fraser Fir, Blue Ice Cypress, Murray Cypress, White Pine, Deodar Cedar, Virginia Pine, Leyland Cypress, Carolina Sapphire, Red Cedar, and Thuja Green Giant. This farm also features free hay rides and hot chocolate on the weekends. Their hours are Monday – Saturday 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM and Sunday 1:00 PM to 5:30 PM. You can find more information by contacting them at 803-892-3662 or visiting their website


Bear Creek Tree Farm


Deodar Cedar

in Chapin, SC is another great option with tons of trees to choose from like the Carolina Sapphire, Deodar Cedar, Eastern Red Cedar, Leyland Cypress, Murray Cypress, Virginia Pine, White Pine and fresh Fraser firs from North Carolina. This tree farm also sells a variety of wreaths, garland, poinsettias. They are open everyday beginning November 27 until December 23. Their hours are Monday – Friday 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM, Saturday 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM, and Sunday 1:00 PM to 5:30 PM. They are located at 564 Amicks Ferry Road Chapin, SC 29036. You can contact this tree farm at (803) 345-5607 or find more information about his tree farm here.

Old Barn Christmas Tree Farm

is located in Chapin, SC. This tree farm will be selling two varieties of trees this year including Virginia Pines and Fraser Firs (small shipload coming in on Thursday, December 10th for their last weekend!). This holiday season they will be open beginning November 27th to Dec 13th and their hours will be Friday 3 PM – 5:30 PM,  Saturday 9 AM- 5:30 PM and Sunday 1 PM – 5:30. Also, get the chance to purchase wreaths, garland, and hanging baskets. Free hot chocolate for everyone This farm is located at 843 Old Lexington Highway Chapin, SC 29036 and you can contact them at (803) 920-3488 or visit their website at

Merry Christmas Columbia-frankies

Old Congaree Run Tree Farm

Virginia Pine

Virginia Pine

in Eastover, SC has a wide variety of trees as well as custom made wreaths. This tree farm grows the Carolina Sapphire, Eastern Red Cedar, Leyland Cypress, Virginia Pine, White Pine, and Clemson Greenspire. They are open from November 27 to December 20. Their hours are Friday and Sunday 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM and Saturday 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Their address is 219 Old Congaree Run Eastover, SC 29044. You can contact them at (803) 622-4901 or (704) 724-3852 or visit their Facebook page here.

Christmas trees grown in South Carolina include:

Leyland Cypress.  The most popular Christmas tree in the Southeast, the Leyland Cypress is a hybrid of Monterey Cypress and Alaskan Cedar.  It has a nice dark green color and has very little aroma. It does not produce sap, so that those with an allergy to sap can enjoy a Leyland Cypress as their Christmas tree.  Hybridized in the south of Wales, it made its way to South Carolina in 1965 where SC foresters and growers recognized its value as a Christmas tree.

Carolina Sapphire.  Carolina Sapphire is a variety of Arizona Cypress and has a beautiful blue green color (like that of a Blue Spruce), a steeple shape, is soft to the touch and has a good aroma.  It tends to dry out quickly, so it is not recommended to cut this tree any sooner than 4 weeks before Christmas.

Eastern Red Cedar. Also known as Juniperus virginiana, the Eastern Red Cedar holds a long history with the Cherokee Indians.  It is not a true cedar tree, but is actually a juniper tree. It is grown all along the eastern United States, and is a very traditional christmas tree to have in the south. This tree tends to be slow growing, with a comparatively short trunk, and has shiny dark green color.

Blue Ice Cypress. The Blue Ice has a soft texture and strong branches. Like its name suggests, the color of this tree has a silvery-bluish tint and a wonderful scent to complement it. This tree has been nicknamed the “Blue Pyramid” and is another variety of the Arizona Cypress. It prefers hot-dry conditions, and also tends to dry out quickly, so cut this tree about 3 to 4 weeks before Christmas.

Murray Cypress. A variety of the Leyland Cypress, the Murray Cypress has a darker color and stronger branches than the Leyland Cypress. This soft textured variety will last through most of the Christmas season and will keep your house clean and needle-free. This tree is also good for your home because it does not produce pollen, making it a great find for asthma suffers.

White Pine. One of the largest pine trees grown in the United States, the White Pine has a blue-green tint and is typically good for lighter ornaments. These trees do not have a strong scent, but this can be beneficial to people with allergies. The well-retained needles of the White Pine usually have a soft and flexible texture.

Deodar Cedar. This variety of cedar originates from the Himalayas and can now be found in mild climates around the United States. The Deodar Cedar has short and sturdy branches filled with blue-green needles that can be somewhat prickly.

Virginia Pine. The Virginia Pine is most popular Christmas tree of the south. With a classic pine scent, this tree has strong branches that are great for hanging all kinds of ornaments. They are considered small to medium in size and they react well to any trimming that may need to be done before bringing this beautiful tree in to your home.

South Carolina Christmas Lights

The Holiday Festival of Lights at James Island County Park: November 13 – January 3festoflights

This beautiful driving tour of holiday lights displays over 700 displays and two million lights rain or shine. More than just a driving tour, the Holiday Festival of Lights invites you to park your cars and explore all that is offered: Handmade gingerbread houses, Victorian Carousel, treats from Santa’s Sweet Shoppe, an up-close look at the lights via the holiday train, and a magnificent sculpture made from over 50 tons of sand.

The hours will be 5:30 PM to 10:00 PM Sunday-Thursday and 5:30 PM to 11:00 PM Friday and Saturday. Admission is $15, $40, or $100 per vehicle depending on the number of guests. Monday – Thursday, get into the festival for only $10 per vehicle (1-15 guests) with the donation of a non-perishable food item or dog/cat food to benefit the Lowcountry Food Bank. For more information on the Holiday Festival of Lights, visit


21st Annual Lights of Hope | Anderson  Nov 26 – Dec 25

With a one-time entry fee for unlimited time in the park, until you decide to leave, you can enjoy all of the sites and wonders of Lights of Hope — including 3.5 million Christmas Lights and a fun Santa Village you don’t want to miss out on! This Christmas Gift Light Festival is the Upstate’s largest Festival of Lights with an endless loop around the magical hill of dancing Christmas lights. You and your family can enjoy the Marching Soldiers, the Dancing Ballerina, the Nativity Scene, and explore the magical Santa’s Village. They have fun for the whole family at Lights of Hope. $8 per vehicle and opened from 5:30 PM – 11:00 PM every Friday & Saturday night and 5:30 PM – 10:00 PM Sunday – Thursday. More information here! Located at 3215 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Anderson, SC 29621

Brookgreen Gardens – Myrtle Beach, SC: December 3-5; 10-12; 17-19


is hosting Nights of a Thousand Candles. See Brookgreen Gardens come to life amid the soft glow of more than 5,500 hand-lit candles and countless sparkling lights from 3:00 PM – 10:00 PM. The 80-foot-tall Holiday Fir tree decorated with 60,000 lights will be lighted in ceremonial fashion at 5:45 PM every night, so don’t arrive to late. Walk the paths with a warm cup of cider, hear the sounds of hand bells ringing, carolers singing, and celebrate the season with family and friends. For non-members, tickets will be $18 for adults and $10 for children. If you purchase your tickets before 12/1/15, you can receive a $2 discount. To purchase tickets or for more information contact (843) 235-6016 or visit

Swan Lake Fantasy of Lights

Christmas in Hopelands: December 13-23; 26-27xmas-hopelands

will be hosted by the city of Aiken, SC. The 24th Annual Christmas in Hopelands light exhibit takes place at Hopelands Gardens {135 Dupree Place, Aiken SC, 29801} and is open from December 13 – 23; 26-27 from 6:00 pm to 9:30 pm each night. The gardens are illuminated with over 100,000 lights during this free event. This spectacular walk-through exhibit features over 2 miles of lighted pathways and holiday displays along with live music and special events each evening. Childrens crafts will be available at the Rye Patch. For more information contact (803) 642-7631 or click here.

The 23rd annual Roper Mountain Holiday Lights: Beginning Thanksgiving-December 30


show will take place at the Roper Mountain Science Center in Greenville, SC. Enjoy lighted walking trails, a visit with Santa, a balloon artist, concessions, and a 1.5 mile drive through several fun attractions. Admission per vehicle is $10 Monday-Thursday and $15 Friday-Sunday. For more information about this fantastic light show visit

Red Rose Holiday Tour

Mall Santas and Pictures with Santa 2015

santa-vectors_MysVbyF__LThe Season of All Seasons is here, and if you have wee ones, getting those photos with Santa is close to the top of your things-to-do list. To help reduce the stress associated with this blessed annual event, we’ve rounded up some of the best places to find St. Nick. Now all you have to stress about is what your kiddies will wear.

Columbiana Centre

Arrives November 14th! Santa’s elves will be ready to greet your wee ones and guide them to Santa’s lap.  Have a pet yearning to meet Santa? You can bring your furry friend on Monday evenings until December 15! Here’s a deal…bring the children by on Wednesdays and receive a Special Rudolph Activity Pack with the purchase of any Santa Photo Package!  For a complete calendar of Santa’s hours, visit the Columbiana Centre website.

Columbia Place

Santa arrives on Saturday, November 21st, at Columbia Place in Northeast Columbia and will hold court throughout the holiday season. He is eager to hear all the good little boys and good little girls recite to him their Christmas wish lists! For info, call the mall office at 803-788-4678.

Richland Mall

On Saturday, December 5th from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM enjoy Breakfast with Santa. Enjoy fun activities, a delicious breakfast, get your picture taken with Santa, a performance of Jingle Arrgh the Way (a pirate Christmas Adventure) by the Columbia Children’s Theatre and much more! Tickets are available for purchase at the Columbia Children’s Theatre or online here. $12/person (Combo pack: admission tickets, breakfast, picture with Santa); $4/person (breakfast and picture with Santa ONLY). 3400 Forest Drive, Columbia, SC 29204 | 741.7272 x141

Dutch Square Mall

santa-claus-vector-illustration_mkkb3b_LA very jolly old man named Santa Claus makes his appearance at Dutch Square Mall’s Center Court on Friday November 27th at 4:00 and continues visiting with little girls and boys until Christmas Eve.  This is a free operation (they don’t sell pictures)… so you’ll need to bring your own camera.  That’ll be fun!  Santa will also visit with your pets on Sundays from Noon – 6pm.  Santa’s hours can be found on the Dutch Square Mall website.

Merry Christmas Columbia-frankies

Riverbanks Zoo’s Lights Before Christmas

Bring your kids and your camera for a festive show of nearly a million twinkling lights, before telling Santa what you would like to have in your stocking this year! Santa will be visiting nightly from 6:00-9:00 PM from November 20th – December 3rd, except for Thanksgiving night, when he and Mrs. Claus will be enjoying their turkey dinner. Riverbanks members get a free visit with their membership and tickets cost $10 for adults, $8 for children aged 2-12 & are free for children younger than 2. You’ll be sure to make warm memories around the Jingle Bell Bonfire where you can sip on Hot cocoa or roast marshmallows (available for purchase) along with other tasty holiday snacks! For more information, take a look at the Riverbanks Zoo’s Lights Before Christmas page.

Historic Columbia’s Santa Signing Day

A Victorian style Santa Claus will be available for children to share their holiday wishes on November 21st from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM at the Gift Shop at Robert Mills, where the entire store will be 30% off. Every child will receive a holiday greeting for Santa to sign & jumbo sticker and activity books will be available for purchase. Robert Mills’ gift shop also sells Santa’s Magic keys, holiday letter kits and reindeer food for the little ones to enjoy the traditions of the holidays.Children can pose for pictures on Santa’s lap or on their vintage snow sled, view the Historic Basement elves can be seen hard at work and enjoy gingerbread cookies and goodies baked by Mrs. Claus. They can also sign their names and holiday wishes on Santa’s GOOD LIST of little boys and girls.Visit the Historic Columbia’s Santa Signing Day page for more details.

SC Philharmonic

Historic Columbia’s Breakfast with Santa

Enjoy a continental breakfast in the Robert Mills Carriage House with seasonal music, take a tour of the Hampton-Preston Mansion, see a Victorian Christmas tree, make a holiday craft to take home, and take a picture with their Victorian Santa Claus on December 19th from 8:00-11:00 AM. Tickets cost $12 for adults & $5 for kids aged 3 and up that are members of Historic Columbia and cost $15 for adults & $7 for children aged 3 and up that are non-members. Children under the age of 3 are free! Visit the Historic Columbia’s Breakfast with Santa page for more details.

 Lexington County Christmas Sampler

Junior League’s PJs with Santa

Bring your little ones for a Frozen-Themed pajama party with Jolly Old Saint Nick at the Carolina Fair Grounds on Friday December 4th from 5:30 – 8:30 PM. Tickets can be purchased online and at the door and cost $8 for adults and children over 12 months of age. Babies get in free! Parking will cost $5. For more information head over to their Special Events Site.

See Santa at the Holiday Lights on the River!

Holiday Lights on the River at Saluda Shoals Park has a special guest arriving this year. Yep, Santa Claus is coming to town! The jolly man with the big, white beard will make a special appearance at Holiday Lights on the River from December 11 – December 23 only. Nominal fees ($1-$5) for concessions and activities apply. Holiday Lights on the River is a magical experience you won’t want to miss, especially when Santa is involved. Call Saluda Shoals at 803-731-5208 with any additonal questions.

Santa’s Hotline

Let jolly old Saint Nick personally call your little ones ages 3-8. Santa will make all his calls the week of December 21-23. Pick up a form at Crooked Creek Park or request one by email at Forms must be returned to the park by December 18th. It’s free! 1098 Old Lexington Hwy, Chapin, SC 29036.

SC Railroad Museum’s Santa Express Train Ride

First class ticket for adults: reserved seating $20 (+ fee if done over phone of $3.50, on web $2.50 and in person $0) get groups of 4. Children’s regular price: $9 (+ fee if done over phone of $2.95, on web $1.95). Regular adult price of $12 (+ fee if done over phone of $3.10, on web $2.10) meets Santa first. Enjoy hot chocolate, cookies, and stories while aboard the Santa Express. Call 803-712-4135 with any questions or for more information.

Christmas Lights in Columbia

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Holiday Lights on the River at Saluda Shoals Park: November 25-December 31Christmas Lights at Saluda Shoals

is the largest drive-through lights show in the Midlands. This dazzling light show will be open from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM and will feature over 400 animated displays. Other attractions will also be featured including the Winter Wonder Ride with downhill tubing, a walking trail along the boardwalk, and the 12 Nights of Wonder (December 12-23 only). Holiday lights admission is $15 for cars, $25 for vans, and $40 for buses. For more information, visit or call (803) 772-3903.

Lights Before Christmas at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden: November 20-December 30

From 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM. The zoo will sparkle with nearly 1 million lights, countless animated images, visits with Santa, hot cocoa, marshmallows and fun. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for children ages 2 to 12 and went on sale October 31st, so get yours now. Visit for more information. *Closed Nov. 26, Dec. 24, and Dec. 25th.

Main Street Lights | Downtown Newberry  Nov 20 – Dec 25

Newberry claims to have more lights than any other downtown in South Carolina!  Take your family downtown to Memorial Park between 6 and 8pm on Friday Nights between November 20th and December 25th to experience a “real” White Christmas! Snowfall will begin at 6pm and lasts until 8pm. We’ll see you Downtown for this Special Holiday Snowfall Night! More info here.

Swan Lake Fantasy of Lights

Fantasy of Lights in Sumter, SC: November 30 – December 31

Fantasy of Lights Sumter

The Fantasy of Lights will take place at the beautiful Swan Lake Iris Gardens. Over 1 million lights and 150 twinkling figures light up the 150 acres of gardens. The gardens will be open from dusk until 10:00 PM on Fridays and Saturdays throughout the entire month of December and from dusk until 9:00 PM Sunday – Thursday. Admission is free. Be amazed as the sun goes down as the gardens come alive with breathtaking light displays symbolizing the holiday season as well as seeing some of our favorite cartoon characters! For more information visit

Lights of Cayce – Dec 3 – Dec 31

Visitors can drive through the Cayce City Hall complex and enjoy the magic of the Lights of Cayce including thousands of twinkling lights and music of the season. More here.

Harborside Lights: December 12

See the Village Green and Town Center glow with thousands of twinkling lights and luminaries. Lake Carolina’s Harborside Lights celebration brings holiday tradition and family fun together. Enjoy musical entertainment, horse-drawn carriage rides, photos with Santa, holiday treats, millions of twinkling lights, over sixteen hundred luminaries and dozens of decorated trees at this annual holiday celebration! If you can’t make it for Harborside Lights, the community is lovely and decorated beautifully throughout the season.

West Metro Parade of Lights: December 12westmetrolights

South Carolina’s only night-time Christmas Parade! From 5:30-7:15 PM. 12th Street in West Columbia & Cayce –  floats and marchers are decked out with thousands of Christmas lights to kick off the holiday season! Parade begins on the corner of Hwy 1 (Meeting Street) and 12th Street and proceeds down 12th Street ending in front of the Cayce Municipal Complex.

Elgin LightsElgin Lights: December 15-24

From 6-9PM. Truly a labor of love by the Towns family of Elgin. See hundreds of antique tractors including a 1909 working steam engine, miniature trains and memorabilia and forty thousand lights. Families are invited to get out of their cars and walk around and/or take a hayride through the woods. Working blacksmith. Take pictures on 1939 John Deere tractor and Christmas-themed photo props. Four buildings – known as the “Elgin Smithsonian”! Free admission; donations appreciated with all proceeds given to Camp Kemo. The farm is located at 2433 Charlie House Circle in Elgin, SC. (803) 408-0131.

Restaurants Open on Christmas Eve/Christmas Day

Note: Please call each restaurant to verify information below before you head there.

M Group

*All of these M Group Restaurants are closed on Christmas Day.

M Grille
Christmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM & 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM. 
(803) 708-8881  |  530 Lady Street, Columbia, SC

M Vista
Christmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 9:00 PM. 
(803) 255-8878  |  701 Lady Street, Columbia, SC 29201

M Cafe
Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM & 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM. 
(803) 779-5788  | 1417 Sumter Street, Columbia, SC 29201

M Fresh
Christmas Eve: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM. 
(803) 779-1688  |  1237 Washington Street, Columbia, SC 29201

Miyos on Harbison & Forest Drive & Lexington {All 3 Locations!}
Christmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 9:00 PM. 
Visit: for all three of these Miyos locations and phone numbers.

Miyos in Sandhills
Christmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 8:30 PM. 
(803) 788-8878  |  715 Fashion Drive, Columbia, SC 29229

Rioz Brazilian Steakhouse

Christmas Eve: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
*Taking reservations until 9:00 PM
(803) 708-3151  |  410 Columbiana Dr, Columbia, SC 29212

Rue 77

Christmas Eve: 5:00 PM – 2:00 AM. Closed on Christmas Day.
At 8:00 PM that evening there will be an enjoyable Jazz concert with Terence Young and FREE Moscato for ladies until 8:00 PM. Heavy hors d’oeuvres all night, so come out and enjoy your Christmas eve!
(803) 708-4785  |  1301 Assembly St, Columbia, SC 29201

Ariana’s Restaurant

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 796-4430  |  1720 Sunset Blvd. West Columbia, SC

River Rat Brewery

Christmas Eve: 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 724-5712 | 1231 Shop Rd, Columbia, SC 29201

Yesterday’s Restaurant and Tavern

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 799-0196  | 2030 Devine St, Columbia, SC 29205

Ruth’s Chris Steak House

Open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 6:30 AM – 10:00 AM for breakfast & lunch/dinner: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Nothing says “special occasion” like Ruth’s Chris, so spend your very special holiday season here.
(803) 212-6666   |    924-A Senate St. (Inside the Hilton Hotel) Columbia, SC

Ruths Chris ad

Columbo’s Double Tree by Hilton

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day: 7:00 AM – Midnight
Christmas buffet featuring Prime Rib and Carved Turkey will be served from 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM; $30 for adults, $25 for military and seniors over 65, $15 under 10 years, and free for children under 5. Reservations required.
(803) 731-0300 |  2100 Bush River Road, Columbia, SC


Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
All Locations in Columbia
Click here to find one closest to you

Menkoi Ramen House

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM & 5:00 PM – 10:30 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 708-1569 | Vista Suites LLC, 1004 Gervais St, Columbia, SC 29201

Flying Saucer

Christmas Eve from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM & Christmas Day from 5:00 PM – Midnight
(803) 933-9997 | 931 Senate St, Columbia, SC 29201

Tsubaki Restaurant

Christmas Eve: 6:00 PM – 1:00 AM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 736-7474  |  224 Oneil Ct, Columbia, SC 29223

Old Mill Brewpub

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 785-2337  |  711 E Main St, Lexington, SC 29072

Flaming Grill Supreme Buffet

Christmas Eve & Christmas Day: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM
(803) 781-2226  |  115 Afton Ct, Columbia, SC 29212

Wet Willie’s

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM & Christmas Day: 5:00 PM – Midnight
(803) 779-5650  |  800 Gervais St. Columbia, SC

The British Bulldog Pub

Christmas Eve & Christmas Day: 4:00 PM – 10ish {closing time depends on volume of people}
(803) 227-8918  |   Columbiana Station, 1220 Bower Pkwy, Columbia, SC 29212

Red Bowl Asian Bistro

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM & Christmas Day: Noon – 10:00 PM
(803) 462-9991  |  Village at Sandhill Columbia, SC

Liberty Taproom & Grill in the Vista

Christmas Eve: 11: 00 AM – 4:00 PM. Closed Christmas Day.
(803) 461-4677  |  828 Gervais St, Columbia, SC 29201

Homegrown Hosp Ad


Christmas Eve: 4:00 PM – 9:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 661-7741  |  936 Gervais St, Columbia, SC 29201

Carolina Ale House

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 227-7151    |   708 Lady St, Columbia, SC 29201
(803) 407-6996  |   277 Columbiana Drive Columbia, SC 29212

Liberty on the Lake

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 667-9715   |   1602 Marina Rd, Irmo, SC 29063

Lizards Thicket

Christmas Eve {breakfast only}: 6:00 AM – 11:30 AM. Closed on Christmas Day.
Click here to find one closest to you


Christmas Eve & Christmas Day {Always 24 Hours}
All Locations in Columbia
Click here to find one closest to you

Cracker Barrel

Christmas Eve: 6:00 AM – 2:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 731-0672   |   Outlet Pointe Shopping Center, 2208 Bush River Rd, Columbia, SC 29210


Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
Click here to find one closest to you

River Rat Brewery ad

Rockaway Athletic Club

Christmas Eve: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM {Bar + Kitchen}
Christmas Day: 4:00 PM – Midnight
{Only Bar Open}
(803) 256-1075   |   2719 Rosewood Dr, Columbia, SC 29205

Sato Japanese Steak & Seafood

Christmas Eve: 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM & 5:00 PM – 9:30 PM. Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 782-1064  |  1999 N Beltline Blvd, Columbia, SC 29204


Christmas Eve: 11:45 AM – 2:00 PM {lunch} & 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM {dinner} Closed on Christmas Day.
(803) 699-2626   |   224 Oneil Ct #9 Columbia, SC