2021 Holiday Guide

By Abilene CVB on October 25, 2021

Cowtown-Christmas-Abilene,KS

Saturday, December 4

All Day                      Christmas Tree Lane

Follow Christmas Tree Lane through Abilene on N. Buckeye Ave to NW 3rd Street to see a beautiful assortment of decorated Christmas Trees in residential yards.

9:00 am - 8:00 pm  Celebrate Christmas at the Historic Sunflower Hotel

See the inside of the Historic Sunflower Hotel beautifully decorated with Christmas Trees and holiday decor. 

9:00 – 10:00 am       Breakfast with Santa (Tickets must be purchased in advance) -- SOLD OUT --

Breakfast at the Hitching Post Restaurant will include a cinnamon roll, juice and/or coffee. There will be a coloring and craft table, story time, and, of course, your chance to visit with Santa Claus. Tickets are $8 and must be purchased by Monday, December 1.

9:00 – 11:00 am        Christmas Brunch – Taste of New Orleans

Carry out brunch sponsored by the Arts Council of Dickinson County. Can't make it to the Big Easy this Christmas? Enjoy brunch NOLA style! You'll experience a brunch sampler with New Orleans flavor, combined with a little bit of history and culture to kick off some Christmas spirit.

Tickets are $15 and can be purchased November 1-December 1 at West's Country Mart and at the Arts Council office. Open Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 am to 1 pm and Tuesday and Thursday from 11 am to 5 pm. For information call (785) 263-1884 or text (785) 280-0543 for advance tickets or questions.

10:00 am – 4:00 pm   Holiday Tours at Historic Seelye Mansion

Built in 1905 for $55,000 the Historic Seelye Mansion is beautiful at any time of year, but especially during the holiday season. Tour the mansion and see beautifully decorated trees in every room, a collection of more than 750 nutcrackers, and hundreds of Poinsettias.

10:00 am – 6:00 pm   Sand Springs Venue Country Christmas Open House

Enjoy carriage rides, petting zoo, Santa and family photos alongside “Clara” an old vintage truck, holiday vendors, and much more!

1:00 pm                      1st Santa Train -- SOLD OUT --

Abilene Parks and Recreation is sponsoring a holiday train ride with the Abilene & Smoky Valley Railroad Association. The train ride is approximately 45 minutes long and travels from Abilene to one mile west of Enterprise and back. Passengers will ride in an enclosed heated car with Santa who will be available to listen to your Christmas wish list. Riders may also take their photos with Santa. The cost to ride is $10 and tickets must be purchased in advance.

2:00 pm                     2nd Santa Train (if 1st train fills up) -- SOLD OUT --

2:00 pm                    Elf - The Musical at Great Plains Theatre

Celebrate the holidays with everybody's favorite oversized elf! This energetic musical based on the classic Christmas film will have you pouring syrup all over your spaghetti this year. "Buddy the Elf, what's your favorite color?!"

4:00 – 8:00 pm         Heritage Homes Association’s 44th Annual Homes for the Holidays Tour

From a reimagined former school to a downtown upper story apartment and AirBNB, to beautifully restored and decorated homes on Abilene’s historic Vine Street Historic District, and a lovely Church, you won’t want to miss the 44th Annual Homes for the Holidays Tour! Tickets are $10 and are available in advance at West’s Plaza Country Mart, SK Designs and Abilene Downtown Antique/Mud Creek Malls, and prior to the tours at LifeHouse Church.

4:00 – 8:00 pm        Dickinson County Historical Society’s Old Fashioned Christmas

Enjoy children's crafts in the Kellogg one-room schoolhouse, sip hot chocolate in Burklund's Grocery Store, ride the 1901 C.W. Parker Carousel, hear Christmas music from three live bands, visit Santa Claus, and see a Live Nativity. A sleigh will be on display for family photos ($5 per photo) and horse and buggy rides will take visitors between the Heritage Center and Old Abilene Town. The cost to attend is $2 and children 5 and under are free.

4:00 – 8:00 pm        Cowboy Christmas at Old Abilene Town begins

Hot chocolate, chili, cinnamon rolls.  Warm yourself up at the Alamo Saloon.  Kids activities, gift shop for Christmas shopping, decorate one of our many trees, enjoy Christmas movies at the Trail Museum.  Christmas music and more to get you in the spirit of the season at Old Abilene Town.  

4:00 – 8:00 pm        Wrapping Station at the Abilene Public Library

Bring your gifts ready to wrap, and the Library will have paper, supplies, and space to spread out.

4:30 -6:30 pm           Christmas Cruise for Food 

Drop off food or monetary donations to the Abilene Area Food Bank, 409 NW 3rd Street next to the Sunflower Hotel. Please use the eastbound lane that is designated for dropoffs and volunteers from the Food Bank and Neighbor to Neighbor will be waiting to accept your donations.

Then, you will receive a ballot and map for the Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown. Cruise through Abilene admiring all of the holiday decorations. Ballots must be turned in by 7:30 pm at Amanda's Bakery & Bistro, 302 N. Broadway Ave. 

The winners from the Cowtown Christman Light Showdown will be announced at 8:00 pm at Little Ike Park.

Feel free to decorate your ride and come enjoy a great Christmas Cruise!

5:00 – 7:00 pm         Judging for Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown

Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown Map

6:00 pm                     Mayor’s Holiday Tree Lighting

An annual tradition, visit Little Ike Park for the lighting of the Mayor’s Holiday Tree.

6:10 pm                     Santa Visits

Visit Santa Claus at Little Ike Park and make sure to tell him what’s on your list! Visitors will enjoy free goodie bags from Santa and Mrs. Claus.

7:00 pm                    Turkey Drop* (for adults)

Reminiscing to WKRP’s ‘Turkeys Away’, stand below as ten (stuffed) turkeys descend from the sky. Catch one and you’ll receive a free holiday turkey!

*Sponsored by First Bank Kansas and Pinnacle Bank

7:15ish                       Snowball Drop* (for kids)

No matter what the meteorologist says, we guarantee it will be snowing. See hundreds of snowballs flying through the sky. Find a special, brightly colored snowball and redeem it for Dickinson Dollars that can be used in Dickinson County businesses.

*Sponsored by Bennington State Bank

7:30 pm                     Elf - The Musical at Great Plains Theatre

Celebrate the holidays with everybody's favorite oversized elf! This energetic musical based on the classic Christmas film will have you pouring syrup all over your spaghetti this year. "Buddy the Elf, what's your favorite color?!"

7:30 pm                     All Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown ballots must be turned in to Amanda’s Bakery and Bistro

7:30 – 8:00 pm         AHS Singers will perform some of our favorite holiday carols.

8:00 pm                    Winners of Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown announced

Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown sponsored by Solid Rock Audio Video, Cory Frey.

2nd Place Winner sponsored by Shelly Crane, Almost Home Realty.

Mayor's Choice Awards sponsored by JRI Hospitality, Inc, Ingermanson Farms, Salina Country Club, and The Farmhouse.

8:00 pm                     Fireworks*

Enjoy a fun fireworks display in downtown Abilene! Sponsored by Solid Rock Audio Video, Cory Frey and Almost Home Realty, Shelly Crane.

*Weather permitting fireworks will be set off from the east end of the Civic Center Parking Lot.

8:00 - 11:00 pm         Dallas Pryor Acoustic Show at Old Abilene Town

After the fireworks show, head to Old Abilene Town for an acoustic show with Dallas Pryor at the Alamo Saloon from 8-11 pm. Tickets are $10 at the door and drinks will be available.

Sunday, December 5

All Day                     Christmas Tree Lane

Follow Christmas Tree Lane through Abilene on N. Buckeye Ave to NW 3rd Street to see a beautiful assortment of decorated Christmas Trees in residential yards.

9:00 am - 8:00 pm  Celebrate Christmas at the Historic Sunflower Hotel

See the inside of the Historic Sunflower Hotel beautifully decorated with Christmas Trees and holiday decor. 

1:00 – 3:00 pm         Santa Visits with Ginger at the Greyhound Hall of Fame

Shopping for your loved ones this holiday season? Don’t forget man’s best friend! Visit the Greyhound Hall of Fame Museum for “greyt” gift ideas and take your photo with Santa and Ginger!

1:00 – 4:00 pm          Holiday Tours at Historic Seelye Mansion

Built in 1905 for $55,000 the Historic Seelye Mansion is beautiful at any time of year, but especially during the holiday season. Tour the mansion and see beautifully decorated trees in every room, a collection of more than 750 nutcrackers, and hundreds of Poinsettias.

1:00 – 5:00 pm          Heritage Homes Association’s 44th Annual Homes for the Holidays Tour

From a reimagined former school to a downtown upper story apartment and AirBNB, to beautifully restored and decorated homes on Abilene’s historic Vine Street Historic District, and a lovely Church, you won’t want to miss the 44th Annual Homes for the Holidays Tour! Tickets are $10 and are available in advance at West’s Plaza Country Mart, SK Designs and Abilene Downtown Antique/Mud Creek Malls, and prior to the tours at LifeHouse Church.

2:00 pm                     Abilene Municipal Band Holiday Concert – Abilene High School Auditorium

Celebrating its 140th year, the Abilene Municipal Ban Concert is a holiday favorite. Listen to some of your favorite holiday tunes performed by talented members of the community.         

2:00 pm                     Elf - The Musical at Great Plains Theatre

Celebrate the holidays with everybody's favorite oversized elf! This energetic musical based on the classic Christmas film will have you pouring syrup all over your spaghetti this year. "Buddy the Elf, what's your favorite color?!"

4:00 – 8:00 pm         Cowboy Christmas at Old Abilene Town begins

Hot chocolate, chili, cinnamon rolls.  Warm yourself up at the Alamo Saloon.  Kids activities, gift shop for Christmas shopping, decorate one of our many trees, enjoy Christmas movies at the Trail Museum.  Christmas music and more to get you in the spirit of the season at Old Abilene Town.  

4:00 – 8:00 pm        Dickinson County Historical Society’s Old Fashioned Christmas

Enjoy children's crafts in the Kellogg one-room schoolhouse, sip hot chocolate in Burklund's Grocery Store, ride the 1901 C.W. Parker Carousel, hear Christmas music from three live bands, visit Santa Claus, and see a Live Nativity. A sleigh will be on display for family photos ($5 per photo) and horse and buggy rides will take visitors between the Heritage Center and Old Abilene Town. The cost to attend is $2 and children 5 and under are free.

And remember to Shop Small, All Season Long at Abilene’s small businesses!

Business Specials

  • RHV Hardware - 305 N Buckeye Ave - Visit Santa from 1-5 on Saturday and enjoy 20% off all purchases
  • Aksent Boutique - 309 N Buckeye Ave - Shop specials in the "she shed" from 10 am - 3 pm.
  • Ortus Cafe & Gallery - 118 NW 2nd Street - Open late! Shop 20% off most merchandise including ornaments, mugs, t-shirts, coasters, incense, candles, crystals, tea towels, and rocks. Select art will also be on sale.
  • Countrypolitan - 317 N Broadway St - Open until 8 pm! Shop specials and check out their great selection of holiday decor!
  • The Other Jones Store - 310 N Broadway St - Open until 8 pm! Look for sales throughout the store!
  • Amanda's Bakery & Bistro - 302 N. Broadway Ave. - Open late! Make sure to drop off your Cowtown Christmas Light Showdown ballots before 7:30 pm. 
  • Hairtiques, The Gift Parlor and Genny's 2.0 - 318/316 N Broadway St - Open late! Shop for the perfect holiday gift for your loved one and enjoy delicious homemade baked goods. 

For updated information, please visit www.AbileneKansas.org/Christmas.

Help us, help you!

Is your event, activity, or sale missing? Are you hosting Griswold Family Photos, hot cocoa, ornament decorating, Gingerbread house classes, storytime with Santa, or other activities? Please send updates to Julie@AbileneCityHall.com.