6 must-attend winter events in Nashville

Snow Tubing - Opryland (1).jpg

Snow Tubing - Opryland (1).jpg

<p><em>Photo courtesy of Cheekwood</em></p> Nashville Christmas Parade (1).jpg <p><em>Photo courtesy of Nashville Ballet/Marianna Leach</em></p>

1. Nashville’s Nutcracker by the Nashville Ballet

Now in its 11th year, “Nashville’s Nutcracker” weaves the classic tale with cleaver nods to Nashville’s past and present. The family-friendly performance follows young Clara’s journey with beloved characters like Uncle Drosselmeyer, the Sugar Plum Fairy, the Mouse King and the Nutcracker. The Nashville Ballet tradition

When: Dec.1-23, select dates and times

Where: Jackson Hall, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, 505 Deaderick St.

Price: $35-$93

2. Ice skating and snow tubing at Gaylord Opryland

Gaylord Opryland, a known holiday destination for locals and tourists alike, features more than three million lights each year, along with a host of activities like a 7,000-square-foot outdoor ice rink, a five-lane tubing hill covered in 1.5 million pounds of real snow, a “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas” themed ice sculpture show and more.

When: Nov. 9-Jan. 1

Where: Gaylord Opryland, 2800 Opryland Drive, Nashville

Price: Activity prices vary

3. Holiday LIGHTS at Cheekwood

Along with one million lights that illuminate the mile-long walking path, Cheekwood goes all out with live reindeer, a s’mores pit, gingerbread workshops, carolers and other activities. Holiday LIGHTS is a timed-ticketed event with two evening time slots available. Arrivals begin at 5 p.m. and run until 7 p.m. with late evening arrivals beginning at 7 p.m. running until 9 p.m.

When: Nov. 23-Dec. 30, Daily

Where: Cheekwood Estate and Gardens, 1200 Forrest Park Drive

Price: Adults, $22; Ages 3-17, $17; Children 2 and under, free; members receive $5 discount

4. Rudolph’s Red Nose Run

Leading up to the annual parade is Rudolph’s Red Nose Run, Nashville’s most festival 5k. Organizers encourage runners, walkers and joggers of all abilities to wear their best holiday apparel and stick around for a costume contest. The race benefits NeedLink Nashville’s heating and housing programs that keep hundreds of Nashville families and seniors warm each winter.

When: Saturday, Dec. 1, 7:30 a.m.

Where: Riverfront Landing Area at Nissan Stadium, 1 Titans Way, Nashville

Price: $30 per participant

5. The 65th annual Nashville Christmas Parade

Nashville’s annual Christmas parade returns this year with custom floats, balloons and an appearance by Santa, along with performances by LeAnn Rimes, Craig Wayne Boyd, Melinda Doolittle and many others.

When: Saturday, Dec. 1, 8:30 a.m.

Where: Parade begins at First Ave. N and Brandon St. and ends at 8th Ave. N and Broadway

Price: Free

6. Porter Flea Holiday Market

The Porter Flea Holiday Market is an indoor holiday shopping opportunity with vendors selling apparel, accessories, home goods, furniture, jewelry and more. The annual pop-up event brings together some of Nashville’s best independent artists, designers and artisans.

When: Friday, Dec. 7, 6-9 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 8, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Where: The Fairgrounds Nashville, 625 Smith Ave, Nashville

Price: $25 for Dec. 7 preview event; free admission on Dec. 8 

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