Two Midland holiday events you won’t want to miss

Whether you’re looking for a winter stroll or a day of downtown shopping, carriage rides, and hot cocoa, here are a few events across Midland you can enjoy this holiday season. 

Stroll the garden’s pathway lit with twinkling lights and luminaries.
Dow Gardens Christmas Walk: Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 9-11 and 16-18 from 5-7:30 p.m. 

Stroll the garden’s pathway lit with twinkling lights and luminaries on the way to meet Santa’s reindeer. Warm beverages from Travelin’ Tom’s Coffee of Saginaw will be available for purchase. Masks and social distancing are strongly encouraged. This is a free, drop-in event with candlelight and music. Dec. 16-18 walks will be silent walks. Reservations are not required. 

“Each year, this free event is our gift to the community, allowing participants to celebrate this festive season while taking in the winter beauty of the gardens.”Dow Gardens Assistant Director of Guest Operations Carolynn Paten says they're very excited to welcome guests back to the Dow Gardens Christmas Walk. “Each year, this free event is our gift to the community, allowing participants to celebrate this festive season while taking in the winter beauty of the gardens.”

For more information, visit the Dow Gardens website. 

Midland Holly Jolly Days: Dec. 11-12 from noon-4 p.m. in downtown Midland. 

Sponsored by the Midland Downtown Business Association, this annual event has been happening since 2007. Designed to encourage holiday shopping and support local, the event includes plenty of activities along the way including free horse-drawn carriage rides, free hot cocoa at WhichCraft Taproom and Heather n Holly, and candy canes at Serendipity Road. Free gift wrapping by Northwood University DECA students is also provided. 

During Holly Jolly Days, enjoy a ride in a horse-drawn carriage for free.Attendees can receive a $5 coupon for any $25 purchase at participating retailers. Shoppers can take a break and sit by the toasty outdoor fireplaces downtown. Selina Tisdale, community affairs director for the city of Midland, says the event already had a successful kickoff last weekend. 

“On Dec. 4, when Holly Jolly Days kicked off, we featured Empty Canvas, singing holiday favorites while creating a beautiful one-of-a-kind painting of the Santa House. This 24-by-30-inch canvas is being auctioned off online,” she says. “Proceeds will go toward funding future Downtown Midland events.”

Tisdale says the event also includes free rides on the Northern Star and Santa House train from 1:30-4:30 p.m. For the entire Santa House schedule, visit the website. The Santa House is located at the corner of M-20 and Main Street. 

The event is free and no registration is required. Masks are welcome, but not required. 

Read more articles by Sarah Spohn.

Sarah Spohn is a Lansing native, but every day finds a new interesting person, place, or thing in towns all over Michigan, leaving her truly smitten with the mitten. She received her degrees in journalism and professional communications and provides coverage for various publications locally, regionally, and nationally — writing stories on small businesses, arts and culture, dining, community, and anything Michigan-made. You can find her in a record shop, a local concert, or eating one too many desserts at a bakery. If by chance, she’s not at any of those places, you can contact her at spohn9@gmail.com.