Things to do in Houston this weekend, December 2 to 4: Holiday events, festivals, & more

With the start of December, the holiday season is in full swing. Several Houston-area cities are ringing in the magic with Christmas tree lightings, holiday festivals and family-friendly events.

Here's a look at just some of the things to do this weekend in the Houston area.

MORE: Places to enjoy Christmas lights around Houston

Dickens on the Strand

Travel back in time at Dickens on The Strand. The annual festival, now in its 49th year, is based on 19th-century Victorian London. There will be costumed characters and vendors, entertainment on four stages, parades and more. There will also be appearances by Her Majesty Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, Father Christmas, and other special guests.

When: Dec. 2, 5 p.m to 9 p.m. (free admission); Dec. 3, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Dec. 4, 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Where: Galveston's Historic Strand District

Cost: Adult general admission $20; Children (7-12) general admission $15

Click here for more information.

Deck the Park

The Clay Family Eastern Glades at Memorial Park are lighting up for the holidays. This family event features a preview of the holiday lights before they officially open. There will be food trucks, games, letters to Santa and hot cocoa for purchase. Bring a blanket and stick around for a screening of Elf at 7 p.m.

When: Dec. 2, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Where: Clay Family Eastern Glades, Washington Ave, Houston, TX 77007

Cost: $10 adult general admission; $5 children's admission

Click here for more information.

Holiday Delights: A Texas-size Christmas

The Bryan Museum invites the family for a free holiday event. There will be photo-ops and letters to Santa, a Christmas tree lighting, a petting zoo, free books for kids and other activities. You can also explore the exhibits at the museum.

When: Dec. 2, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Where: The Bryan Museum, 1315 21st Street, Galveston, Texas 77550

Cost: Free admission

Click here for more information.

Sugar Land Christmas Tree Lighting

It’s time for Sugar Land’s annual Christmas tree lighting! Bring the whole family to enjoy live entertainment, photos with Santa, live ice sculpting, fun activities and more. There will also be fireworks following the tree lighting.

When: Dec. 2, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Where: Sugar Land Town Square, 2711 Plaza Drive, Sugar Land, TX 77479

Cost: Free admission

Click here for more information.

Iowa Colony Festival of Lights

This holiday festival will feature a tree lighting celebration and 30,000 pounds of snow. There will be crafts, a visit from Santa, a screening of The Grinch, face painting, and musical performances.

When: Dec. 2, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Where: City Hall, 12003 Iowa Colony Blvd., Iowa Colony, TX

Cost: Free

Click here for more information.

Pasadena Christmas tree lighting & parade

Enjoy two nights of holiday festivities in Pasadena. On Friday, head to the City of Pasadena Tree Lighting Celebration for musical performances, food trucks, vendors, and a snow play area for the kids. Mr. and Mrs. Claus will light the tree. 

On Saturday night, watch the 14th annual Holiday Lighted Parade featuring 100 entries and hundreds of thousands of lights. La Fiebre will serve as Grand Marshal.

When: Tree lighting Dec. 2, 6 p.m. 9 p.m.; Parade on Dec. 3 at 7 p.m.

Where: Friday's tree lighting at Pasadena Municipal Court, 1114 Davis St, Pasadena, TX 77506; Saturday's parade route on Fairmont Parkway between Mickey Gilley Blvd and Watters

Cost: Free

Click here for more information.

Hometown Christmas Tree Lighting

Get into the holiday spirit at this Christmas tree lighting and festival in Pearland. Starting at 9 a.m., you can shop for holiday gifts, decorations, decor and more at Blitzen’s Bazaar. Live stage performances begin in the park at 6:30 p.m., followed by the Christmas tree lighting ceremony and a fireworks show.

When: Dec. 2, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Where: Independence Park, 3449 Pearland Pkwy, Pearland, TX 77581

Cost: Free

Click here for more information.

Jingle On The Boardwalk

Weekends at Kemah Boardwalk include holiday fun like photos with Santa, live music and activities for the family. Events vary by the day, like the snow patch on Saturdays. There will be a Christmas boat parade on Dec. 10 and the Rock the Dock holiday party on Dec. 17.

When: Dec. 2 through Dec. 18; Friday through Sunday

Where: Kemah Boardwalk, 215 Kipp Ave, Kemah, TX 77565

Cost: Admission to the boardwalk is free, but some activities may be an additional cost

Click here for more information.

Cirque Italia

Cirque Italia is bringing its tour to the Houston area with a performance that will take spectators along on the ringmaster's expedition to find buried treasure. The performance include aerialists, pirate fights, knife juggling, a crossbow act, the Wheel of Death and more.

MORE: Cirque Italia to bring thrills, excitement with several performances in Katy

When: Dec. 1 to Dec. 4

Where: Katy Mills, 5000 Katy Mills Cir, Katy, TX 77494

Cost: $10 to $50; 

Click here for more information.

Houston Mayor's Holiday Spectacular

Houston is invited to celebrate the season at the Mayor's Holiday Spectacular in front of city hall with the lighting of the Christmas tree and live performances. This year's event will feature Gloria Gaynor, Spud Howard, Mariachi Luna Llena, Dance of Asian America and more. There will also be a Santa photo booth and other activities for the whole family.

When: Dec. 3, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Where: Hermann Square at City Hall, 901 Bagby St, Houston, TX 77002

Cost: Free

Click here for more information.

Katy Old Fashioned Christmas

Katy Old Fashioned Christmas is a market held every first Saturday in December. The free event features more than 200 vendors. There will also be activities for the kids, a visit from Santa, food trucks, and entertainment.

When: Dec. 3; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Downtown Historic Katy

Cost: Free admission

Click here for more information.

Holiday Festival at Levy Park

This free two-day holiday festival has fun for the whole family! There will be photos with Santa, a craft station, a holiday market featuring more than two dozen vendors and food trucks. At 2 p.m.  Saturday, catch a special performance of the Nutcracker by dancers ages 5-12 from River Oaks Dance.

When: Dec. 3 & 4; noon to 5 p.m.

Where: 3801 Eastside St, Houston, TX 77098

Cost: Free

Click here for more information.

Home Alone with live orchestra

Experience this holiday classic in a whole new way. Watch Kevin McCallister’s harrowing Home Alone adventure while the Houston Symphony performs the score composed by John Williams.

When: Dec. 3, 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Where: Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana St, Houston, TX 77002

Cost: Starting at $34

Click here for more information.

Hometown Holiday Festival

Rosenberg is ringing in the holiday season at this free festival. There will be live performances, photos with Santa, family friendly activities and games, food vendors, and a lot more. A Christmas tree lighting ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. 

When: Dec. 3, noon to 8 p.m.

Where: Historic Downtown Rosenberg, 2100 Avenue G, Rosenberg, TX 77471

Cost: Free admission

Click here for more information.

Holiday markets in Rosenberg, Humble

Get your holiday shopping done at a holiday market featuring more than 100 merchants. Browse and buy handmade good, decor, clothing, and more. There will be food available for purchase and wine during select hours. Santa will also make an appearance for photos.

When: Rosenberg, Dec. 2 to Dec. 4; Humble, Dec. 2 & 3

Where: Hollydays Market, Fort Bend County Fairgrounds, 4310 TX-36, Rosenberg, TX 77471; Home for the Holidays, Humble Civic Center, 8233 Will Clayton Pkwy, Humble, TX 77338  

Cost: $6 general admission for each event

Click here for more information.

Snowfest Festival

Missouri City is getting the holiday season underway at the 33rd annual Snowfest. There will be performances and activities for the family, including a 3-lane snow hill, photos with Santa, camel rides, and moonwalks. Stick around for the tree lighting ceremony and fireworks.

There is no parking at the event, but a free shuttle and parking is available at Thurgood Marshall High School.

When: Dec. 3, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Where: City Hall complex, 1522 Texas Parkway, Missouri City, TX 77489

Cost: Free admission

Click here for more information.

Houston Margarita Festival

Sample margaritas in more than a dozen flavors including classic lime, green apple, and jalapeno. While you sip, enjoy live music and performances. When you get hungry, there will be food available. Attendees must be 21 years and older to enter.

When: Dec. 3, noon until 10 p.m.

Where: Water Works Park, 105 Sabine St, Houston, TX 77007

Cost: General admission presale $15; $30 day of event (some passes include complimentary drinks)

Click here for more information.