Flagstaff is a great place to celebrate the upcoming holiday season. We’ll keep posting a selection of holiday events, mostly occurring on weekends, and you can watch for new postings here. There are three special events that start soon (or have started) and run though the beginning of the new year, so we’re writing them up as a special post.
Christmas Lights at Little America — Lighting Celebration is this Friday
Little America Hotel hosts its 20th Annual Holiday Lights event on the afternoon and evening of Friday, November 21st when the switch will be flipped to show one million twinkling lights on the hotel property. It’s thought that the town with the brightest holiday lights will catch Santa Claus’s attention first.
On November 21, enjoy activities for all ages — caroling, face painting, balloon twisting, cookies and cider, train and sleigh rides, a visit from Santa, and more. Take part in a travel-themed raffle in support of United Way of Northern Arizona.
For enjoyment throughout the holiday season,see the many accommodation and dining options at the Little America – Flagstaff website, including the famous Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day Champagne Brunches. The Holiday Lights remain lit through New Year’s Day.
North Pole Experience
November 21st is also the opening night of Little America’s North Pole Experience® (NPX) season, where guests are magically transported from the trolley departure station at the resort to Santa’s 400-year-old Workshop at the Coconino County Fairgrounds. Delight in this one-of-a-kind “Christmas adventure of a lifetime” in Flagstaff. Inside his grand workshop and toy factory headquarters, guests will work side-by-side with Santa and his elves, building toys. Families will also tour Santa’s Toy Hall of Fame, attend Elf University, eat cookies inside Mrs. Claus’s Bakery, see Santa’s sleigh and mission control, and enjoy special one-on-one family time and photo with Santa.
Book the NPX for various times of day and night through December 27th. See the NPX website and click on Frequently Asked Questions for many more details.
Reservations are recommended very early as the North Pole Experience sells out early in the season. Book your NPX tickets before booking lodging and dining options to guarantee your preferred NPX date.
Little America offers special lodging and meal packages for NPX guests which include:
- A one-night stay at the Little America Hotel
- Little America’s lavish NPX dinner buffet
- The famous NPX breakfast with Santa buffet
The special buffets are designed by Little America’s award-winning culinary team. NPX packages are good for the one reserved night only. You may want to book a longer visit to Flagstaff for shopping, entertainment and Northern Arizona ambiance. There’s much more to see and do in Flagstaff!
The Little America Hotel NPX website has many reservation options for the NPX, dining and accommodations, including meals or not including meals. Talk to a reservation agent by giving a jingle to (888) 469-8819.
Polar Express 2014
Every holiday season, the Grand Canyon Railway’s Polar Express comes to life on a railroad journey from the nighttime wilderness of Williams, Arizona, to the enchanted beauty of “the North Pole,” where Santa Claus and his reindeer are waiting. The Grand Canyon Railway depot is just a 25-minute drive west of Flagstaff, where the magic begins when you climb aboard. Watch the faces of children light up, and share in hot chocolate and chocolate chip cookies while listening to this timeless Polar Express story from the children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg. Santa boards the train with a special keepsake gift for each child. Approximate round trip time is 90 minutes.
Reservations are limited, with trains departing the depot on select evenings through January 3rd, at 3:30, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. There’s also a special Christmas Eve train (December 24th). Book tickets online or call 888-848-3511.
Polar Express packages are available including accommodations just footsteps from the train depot at the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel. Enjoy an overnight stay along with dinner and breakfast buffets, with kid-friendly selections and special desserts, at the Railway’s Grand Depot Café.
You can even book reservations for the Polar Express 2015-2016 season.
Whatever your beliefs, Flagstaff is a great place to celebrate.