Holiday Activities in December 2018

Throughout December, the Quad Cities has wonderful events and performances to celebrate the holidays. Plan your holiday getaway in the area around one or more of these events!


Christmas in the Village – Nov. 30-Dec. 1

It’s a family tradition for over 40 years in the Village of East Davenport.  Come and enjoy carolers, children’s activities, Nativity scene and petting zoo with animals, and, of course, Santa will be there along with other holiday characters.  6-9 p.m. each night.  There will be Winter Sparkle fireworks on Saturday at 9 p.m.

Christmas in Silvis 2018 – Saturday, December 1

Silvis Main Street features a visit from Santa and his elves, holiday display limo tours, a puppet show, free soup and sandwiches, ice sculpting demonstrations, kid’s crafts and games, holiday basket raffle, holiday carolers, and an Ugly Christmas Sweater contest. Free. Hours: 5-8 pm.

DeWitt Hometown Christmas – Saturday, December 1

This annual event takes place in DeWitt with different fun activities happening all day long with Santa, children’s carnival, family movie, live window walk, and lighted pickup parade.

19th Century Christmas – Sunday, December 2 at Butterworth Center/Deere-Wiman House

Santa, chamber orchestra and singers, pianists, harpist, trombone quartet, plus activities for the kids. Holiday decorations in both homes. 12-5 pm. Free.

Santa and Swim – Sunday, December 2 at RIFAC

Outside might be cold, but inside RIFAC Santa is soaking up the sun! Enjoy Hawaiian crafts, a visit with Santa, and then jump in the pool!

WinterFest – Sunday, December 2 at Family Museum

The Family Museum continues its tradition of seasonal, family-friendly activities with WinterFest on Sunday, December 2, from 12:00-5:00 pm. For the first time ever, guests will meet a real reindeer and visit with both Santa and Mrs. Claus! Visitors are invited to make a variety of holiday crafts and enjoy performances by the Family Museum Dance Company and other local musical groups.

Winter in Bloom – Sunday, December 2 at Hauberg Center

You are invited to the annual Winter in Bloom Holiday Open House at the Hauberg mansion!  With every room elegantly decorated, it’s the perfect place to take holiday photos of friends and family.  Horse and carriage rides will be back again this year, first come-first served, and kids will enjoy crafts and games.

Holiday Train – Tuesday, December 4 at Freight House Farmer’s Market

The train pulls in at 1:45 and the musical acts of Willy Porter and The Trew’s will entertain. Bring a non-perishable food item or cash for our local food bank. The market will be open, Hot Chocolate, cookies, and more available.  1-4 pm.

Christmas in LeClaire – December 7-9
The charming village of LeClaire, Iowa, is transformed into a scene from a Norman Rockwell painting with its delightful shopping, trolley rides, activities, bazaar, Santas from around the world, craft demonstrations, breakfast with Santa, and much more.  On Saturday there is an Ugly Christmas Sweater 5K at 10 a.m.

Christkindlmarkt – December 8-9 at Freight House Farmers Market

This event will bring the authenticity and joy of a world-famous holiday event to our own backyard.  We have partnered up with the Freight House Farmer’s Market with a number of scheduled vendors and performers!  Expect to see all of the classic Christkindlmarkt favorites, even Krampus himself! Hours: Sat. 10 am-10 pm; Sun. 10 am-4 pm.

Lucia Nights – December 7-8 at Bishop Hill

Celebrate Lucia Nights in historic Bishop Hill. This Swedish holiday feature music, lights, treats, and much more!

2018 Jingle Bell Run: Quad Cities – Saturday, December 8 at Credit Island Park

The Arthritis Foundation’s Jingle Bell Run is a fun way to get decked out and be festive while racing to raise funds and awareness to cure America’s #1 cause of disability. Put on your favorite holiday costume and tie jingle bells to your shoelaces.

OMG Beckyfest – Saturday, December 8 at RiverCenter

A Christmas shopping extravaganza featuring 130 handmade, vintage, food, and kid vendors all in one location! Hours: 10 am-4 pm.

Christmas Tea at Quarters One – Sunday, December 9 at Quarters One

See the Quarters One mansion on Arsenal Island decorated for the holidays while enjoying an afternoon Christmas Tea. You will receive a guided tour of this historic mansion. There will be two seatings. High Tea – 12 noon with heartier savory and sweet delights and several types of tea ($30); Afternoon Tea – 3 p.m. with a selection of sweet treats and several types of tea ($20). Purchase tickets at

Polar Express Pajama Party – December 13-16 at Putnam Museum and Science Center

You and your family will enjoy the magnificent holiday classic The Polar Express 3D on the GIANT Screen in the comfort of your PJs and take part in holiday activities for all ages, including face painting, a hot chocolate station, a make-n-take sleigh bell station, holiday tic-tac-toe, a souvenir Putnam ornament and a lights-out adventure through the museum exhibits.  Event usually sells out.  Get tickets in advance at

Supper with Santa – Friday, December 14 at Moline Garden Center

Join us for an evening with your favorite man in the red suit! Bring your wish list and take a picture with Santa! We will have a light dinner and refreshments, craft time and every child will get to go home with a fun favor! Register in advance at

Christkindlmarkt Craft Fair – Saturday, December 15 at the German American Heritage Center

It’s time for the second annual Christkindlmarkt Craft Fair at the German American Heritage Center and Museum!  Over a dozen local vendors will gather on the fourth floor just in time for last minute gifts, stocking stuffers, and more!  Hours: 10 am-2 pm

Breakfast and Brunch with Santa – December 15-16 at Niabi Zoo

The Holiday Express rolls in to the Zoo with Santa to bring some festive cheer. Come to Santa’s Workshop to eat a warm meal, decorate cookies with Mrs. Claus, get a photo with Santa, get your face painted like a reindeer, and take a train ride on the Holiday Express!  You can join in on this season of giving by bringing a gift for the animals. Purchase tickets in advance at


Cirque Musica Holiday – Tuesday, December 4 at TaxSlayer Center

CIRQUE MUSICA HOLIDAY presents Wonderland is a fun-filled concert experience for the whole family featuring the talented cast of Cirque Musica accompanied by holiday songs performed by a live symphony orchestra. Audiences will journey into a world of “Wonderland” with amazing acrobats, aerialists, hilarious hijinks and holiday cheer.

Rock This Town Orchestra – Friday, December 7 at Isle Casino Bettendorf

Rock This Town Orchestra is the ultimate and only Brian Setzer Orchestra Tribute Band in the U.S. It is at the forefront of the swing revival in popular music, blending a vibrant fusion of the American sounds of classic 50’s rock & roll and big band swing with the energy and spirit of contemporary culture.

The Nutcracker – December 8-9 at Adler Theatre

Ballet Quad Cities and Orchestra Iowa team up to present this captivating performance filled with holiday magic that will take your family on an enchanted adventure with Clara and her prince as they battle the Rat Queen and journey to the Land of Sweets.

Season of Light – December 8-14 at John Deere Planetarium at Augustana College

“Season of Light” is a multimedia show that uses astronomical images, video, animation and sound to tell the story of how holiday traditions are connected to the sky above. December is the darkest month of the year and people all over the world have held festivals, lit candles and tried to bring light to the darkness of the winter sky. The show also explains the seasons, the winter constellations and speculates about the Star of Bethlehem. The free planetarium show will be offered weekdays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. Admission is free, but reservations are requested. Call 309-794-7318 during weekday business hours. The planetarium has undergone a $150,000 upgrade in the past year. The John Deere Planetarium is located on the campus of Augustana College at 820 38th Street, Rock Island.

Home Free – Tuesday, December 13 at Adler Theatre

The five-man band has become known for their show-stopping performances that mix their signature no-instrument, all-vocal music with their quick-witted humor. Enjoy their country Christmas show.

The Oak Ridge Boys – Thursday, December 20 at Adler Theatre

The Oak Ridge Boys have been a part of their fans’ holiday seasons with their annual Christmas tour. This year, the Grammy Award-winning group will play their “Shine the Light on Christmas” show with a mix of traditional and contemporary songs—including religious, romantic and fun holiday tunes.


Pinocchio – Nov. 23-Dec. 29 at Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse

In PINOCCHIO, THE MUSICAL, the story of a familiar wooden puppet who wants to become a real boy is told with vim, verve, and vibrancy. (Choose from Brunch Performances or Show-Only Performances)

Annie – Nov. 7-Dec. 30 at Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse

Based on the popular comic strip by Harold Gray, Annie has become a worldwide phenomenon and was the winner of seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. The beloved book and score by Tony Award winners, Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin, features some of the greatest musical theatre hits ever written.

It Had to Be You – Nov. 30-Dec. 2 at The Black Box Theatre

The plot involves failed actress, health food nut, and would-be playwright Theda Blau, who wants to find love and success in New York.

Noel the Musical – Sunday, December 2 at Adler Theatre

Noël, a brand new holiday family musical, is a touching story of a young girl preparing for her starring role in a school Christmas program and how she saves Christmas.

The Happy Elf – December 6-8 at The Spotlight Theatre

A new musical comedy by the Grammy Award-winning and Tony Award-nominated composer and lyricist, Harry Connick, Jr.’s The Happy Elf tells the tale of Eubie the Elf, a lovable fellow who wants to spread Christmas joy throughout the town of Bluesville.

A Christmas Story – Tuesday, December 18 at Adler Theatre

A Christmas Story brings the classic 1983 movie to hilarious life on stage! Set in 1940s Indiana, a young and bespectacled Ralphie Parker schemes his way toward the holiday gift of his dreams, an official Red Ryder® Carbine-Action 200-Shot Range Model Air Rifle.


Winter Nights Winter Lights – Dec. 1-Jan. 6 at Quad City Botanical Center

The Quad City Botanical Center’s Gardens will be in winter bloom this December with thousands of lights during their annual Winter Nights, Winter Lights.  Bundle up, stroll the gardens at night and then warm up at the hot chocolate bar.  Kids crafts available too.  The exhibit is open to the public from 4:30-8:30 pm Wednesday to Sunday. Included in general admission, except for special events.



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Quad Cities Editorial Team You can find more information about the Quad Cities on our social media accounts and an ongoing event calendar on the website.

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