Metro Detroit Winter Activities from A to Z

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There is a chill in the air and the snowflakes have already begun to fall. Before we know it, the kids will be off school for holiday break, and we will all be scrambling to fill those cold winter days.

Our team here at Detroit Mom is here to help fill up your winter calendar and keep the festivities planned all winter long! Our list of metro Detroit winter activities from A to Z is sure to keep your family busy these next few months.

Whatever you choose to do, remember to have FUN and share with us on social media. We can’t wait to see all the fun things you do this winter!

Metro Detroit Winter Activities from A to Z: Winter Bucket List

A: Arctic Coliseum | Chelsea

Bring the ice skating indoors at the Arctic Coliseum. They offer DJ ice skating with disco lights on Saturdays as well as a variety of open skate options throughout the week. They will also be hosting Curling Fest on December 16th, where you can receive instructions from coaches and scrimmage other players.

B: Big, Bright, Light Show | Rochester

Take a stroll down Main Street and check out one of the best light displays in the area.  With over 1.5 million lights, downtown Rochester is sure to light up this winter season.  Main Street will also be home to a variety of events including window painting contests, cookie strolls, winter markets, and many more.

Bonus: Check out the Birmingham Winter Market taking place December 2nd-4th!

C: Canterbury Village | Lake Orion

Canterbury Village offers events year round, but is sure to help fill the calendar up these next few months. Stroll through the village that has been transformed with over one million lights, listen to carolers sing, and enjoy meeting many of your favorite holiday characters.

Bonus: Hop on a Christmas Light Trolley Tour with friends, from either Troy or Grosse Pointe!

D: Dodge Park Ice Rink | Sterling Heights

The Dodge Park Ice Rink will be open for the season on December 1st. The ice rink is free for residents and $5 for non-residents. They also offer skate rentals and sharpening.

Bonus: Check out indoor ice skating at Detroit Skating Club in Bloomfield Hills.

E: Edsel and Eleanor Ford House | Grosse Pointe Shores

Take a step back in time and immerse yourself in the Ford House’s beauty in one of their nighttime Ford House Christmas tours. They also offer holiday events for both kids and adults throughout the next few months. Be sure to also check out their story times on Tuesdays, too!

F: Fox Theatre | Detroit

The holiday season would not be complete without a trip downtown to visit the Fox or Fisher Theater. From Elf, A Charlie Brown Christmas, The Nutcracker, and Cirque Du Soleil, to Hamilton, Les Misérables, and many more all winter long . . . there is a show for everyone!

G: Glenlore Trails | Commerce Township

Enjoy the immersive winter experience as you stroll through the one mile pathway of live performances and interactive light features.

Bonus: Head on over to Greenfield Village!

H: Holiday Lights on Wheels | St. Clair Shores

Head over to St. Clair Shores for the 3rd annual Holiday Lights on Wheels Parade as hundreds of jeep and truck owners deck their cars out with lights and other holiday decorations and cruise through the town. This year the parade will end at Blossom Heath where you can enjoy the Tunnel of Lights. The parade takes place on Saturday, December 3rd.

Bonus: Check out Huckleberry Railroad!

I: Igloo Dining | Armada + Various Locations

As the weather cools down it’s time to bring the dining indoors–kind of–and dine inside the many igloo dining locations around metro Detroit. From Blake’s in Armada, to Watermark in St. Clair Shores, to Detroit Fleat in Ferndale, you will be sure to see igloos popping up all over town as the temperatures begin to drop.

Bonus: Go sledding at Indian Springs Metropark in White Lake.

J: Jingle Bell Run | Shelby Township

Just because the weather is getting cooler and the snow is beginning to fall, doesn’t mean our fitness is put on the back burner completely. Dust off those running shoes (or snow boots, maybe) and head over to the Jingle Bell Run for a 5k benefitting several charities around metro Detroit. The run takes place on Sunday, December 18th.

K: Kensington Metropark | Milford

There may be some snow on the ground but that doesn’t mean we can’t go hiking. Bundle up and head out to one of the many trails at Kensington Park. Throughout the month of December, they also offer an event called “Chow Time at the Farm,” where children can help the staff feed the animals!

Bonus: Visit the Motor City Kwanzaa Kinara on December 26th.

L: Lantern Walk | Auburn Hills

Walk the 1/2 mile trail that will be illuminated with over 500 lanterns until you reach the lodge at Hawk Woods Park, where you can warm up with hot cocoa and crafts. The walk takes place on Sunday, December 18th.

Bonus: Try out indoor ice skating at Livonia Civic Arena.

M: Meadow Brook Hall and Theater | Rochester

With over 50 trees and live greenery throughout the historic landmark home, this self-guided holiday tour is not one to miss. You can then head outside to the dazzling light display and purchase many tasty treats. Lastly, grab your tickets for the 40th anniversary of the Christmas Carol put on at Meadow Brook Theater, right on the Oakland University Campus.

Bonus: Check out Menorah in the D on December 18th, Magic of Lights at Pine Knob, and/or skiing at Mt. Holly!

N: Nature Walk | Detroit

The newly renovated Belle Isle Nature Center is host to many nature walks and a variety of programs for the nature enthusiast of all ages.

Bonus: Head out for some indoor ice skating at the Novi Ice Arena, and then to Noel Night in Detroit (Saturday, December 3rd)!

O: Opera House | Detroit

Head downtown to enjoy a night at the Opera House to see a variety of performances of all genres. The Opera House also offer tours as well as dance classes.

P: Plymouth Historical Museum | Plymouth

Step back in time at the Plymouth Historical Museum and enjoy a taste of what it may have been like in the late 19th century. Be sure to visit their enchanted winter wonderland and the many other events they have in the month of December.

Bonus: Check out Pine Knob Ski Resort in Clarkston or the various events in Plymouth, like Christmas in Plymouth on December 1st and Plymouth Ice Fest February 3rd-5th.

Q: QLine | Detroit

What better way to explore downtown Detroit than to hop on the QLine? Park near the Riverwalk and enjoy a stroll along the Detroit River. Get off the QLine at Campus Martius for a stop at Cadillac Lodge and some ice skating. Hop off at Grand Circus to grab a bite at many of the great local eateries within walking distance and go tubing at the Monroe Street Midway. Make a stop at Fox Theater for a show or the arena district to catch a Red Wings or Pistons game. Last up . . . make your way up to the museum district before you end in the North End neighborhoods and make your way back.

Be sure to check the Qline website for their Ride, Scan, Save program to see discounts with partnering businesses on the Qline track!

R: Rolling Hills Sledding Hill | Ypsilanti

Rolling Hills Sledding Hill is a 275 foot long hill that offers inner tube rentals. The top of the hill is 70 feet wide, which allows families to spread out for safe sledding.

Bonus: Head on over to the Riley Park Outdoor Ice Rink in Farmington.

S: Snowfest | Frankenmuth

Head up to Frankenmuth to see over 100 ice sculptures, snow sculpting competitions, fireworks, and so much more! With a variety of shops and dining options, Snowfest is sure to be a fun outing for everyone in the family. Snowfest takes place January 25th-29th!

Bonus: Have fun sledding at Snowy Ridge Sledding Hill in Commerce.

T: Tunnel of Lights | St. Clair Shores

The Tunnel of Lights held at Blossom Heath Park transforms an everyday park into a holiday light wonderland on December 3rd. Throughout the month of December, the park also hosts holiday events and will bring in many food trucks and special performance groups.

Bonus: Celebrate New Year’s Eve in Detroit with The Drop, or check out Troy Historic Village!

U: Under the Lights Tubing | Bloomfield Hills

Light up the night with some tubing under the stars. Not only does Bowers Farm offer tubing, you will also find an ice rink with skate rentals, bonfires, and the farm store. The fun starts January 6th!

V: Van Hoosen Farm and Museum | Rochester Hills

The historic Van Hoosen Farm comes alive at the holidays and allows visitors to take candlelight walking tours, as well daytime holiday house tours with a stop to view the interactive railroad exhibit.

Bonus: Have fun with the firepits, curling, and sledding at Valade Park in Detroit.

W: Wayne County Lightfest | Westland

Load the family up in the car and take a four mile drive through Hines Park to view 50 animated displayed and over 100,000 lights.

Bonus: Celebrate Black History Month in February at The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Head there now to see their current exhibit focusing on former President Barack Obama. And, go sledding at Waterford Oaks in Waterford!

X: X-Country Skiing | Huron-Clinton Metroparks

Visit nine of the 13 Huron-Clinton Metroparks during the winter months that offer x-country skiing!

Y: YMCA | Metro Detroit

As they say . . . it’s fun to stay at the YMCA. With seven locations in the metro Detroit area, the YMCA has enrichment activities for all ages. You’ll find youth sports, various holiday programming, family enrichment, and indoor swimming.

Z: Zoo Wild Lights | Royal Oak

Visit the zoo after hours to view millions of twinkling lights and see the zoo in a whole new way. With walk-through light tunnels, enchanted forests, and ending the night with a viewing of the Polar Express in the 4D theater . . . this surely will be a night to remember.

Looking for more metro Detroit winter activities? Check out our complete list of holiday lights to see this winter!

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