Carriage rides and holiday shows: 16 things to do in metro Atlanta this weekend

Lights of Joy brightens Cobb County with over 750,000 lights. Lights of Joy returned in 2020 to Kennesaw. . More than 226 trees with lights in them are featured and there are 5 musical trees. Characters include Santa on a golf cart, a tractor and a helicopter. In 2019, the display was featured on ABC's "The Great Christmas Light Fight."

Looking for something fun to do this weekend in Atlanta as Christmas gets closer? Celebrate the season at one or more events, including holiday shows, movies and carriage rides.

Check out these 16 things to do in metro Atlanta this weekend:


Carriage Sleigh Rides and Santa Photos. 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. Free. The Avenue East Cobb, 4475 Roswell Road, Marietta. 770-971-9945.

Take a carriage sleigh ride starting and ending at the fountain in front of Bravura, and then take your own photo with Santa in his sleigh, which will be parked in front of an 18-foot Christmas tree. Social distancing will be observed, and you’ll need to wear a mask while in line and sanitize your hands before boarding the carriage.

2020 Annual Lemon Street Classic. Saturday, Dec. 19 and continuing Dec. 21-22. $20 for a one-day morning or afternoon session, $30 for an all-day session. Marietta High School, 1171 Whitlock Ave. NW, Marietta and Marietta Middle School, 121 Winn St. NW, Marietta.

Cheer on teams in this basketball tournament, which helps ensure the legacy of Lemon Street, the area’s only school for minorities during segregation.

Xfinity Movie Series. 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. Free. The Battery Atlanta, 755 Battery Ave. SE, Atlanta.

Bring blankets or lawn chairs, grab a spot on the Green and settle in to watch “The Grinch.” Social distancing will be observed, and face masks are strongly suggested. Parking is free for the first three hours in the red, purple and green decks.


Holiday Hangouts. 6 p.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19. $20 non-members, $10 members when purchased online. Fernbank, 767 Clifton Road, Atlanta. 404-929-6300.

Enjoy an evening of holiday cheer with after-hours access to all exhibits, special holiday-themed-activities and access to new outdoor holiday features, including a sock skating rink. Drinks and snacks are available for purchase. Masks are required, and social distancing will be observed.

Hope for a Holiday Show. 5:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19 and Sunday, Dec. 20. $40 per two-person pod, $80 per four-person pod. Children under age 12 don’t count toward your pod number and can be added to any pod. Callanwolde Fine Arts Center, 980 Briarcliff Road NE, Atlanta. 404-872-5338.

This program is presented by the Callanwolde School of Dance and Prime Movers Dance Company and tells the story of a producer searching for enough heart, magic and hope to make a holiday show. Social distancing will be observed, and masks are required.

Holiday Path Painting. 3 p.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 20. $35 per person. Painting with a Twist, 4512 Chamblee Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. 770-676-9524.

Paint a beautiful holiday path amid a snowy scene on a 16x20-inch canvas.

Fab Friday. 4 p.m.-9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. downtown Decatur.

Wear a mask and visit downtown Decatur’s streeteries, expanded patios, sidewalk pop-ups, open-air tent market on the plaza and more.

North Fulton

Dino Safari. 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18-Sunday, Dec. 20 and continuing through Jan. 3. $49.95 per vehicle with up to seven passengers, $54.95 per large vehicle with eight or more passengers. North Point Mall, 1000 North Point Circle, Alpharetta.

Share a family adventure by driving through a variety of giant moving dinosaurs.

Roswell Winter Puppet Series: “Santa’s Missing Mail.” 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m. Friday, Dec. 18 and Saturday, Dec. 19. $5, free for under age 2. Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest St., Roswell.

Watch All Hands Productions’ “Santa’s Missing Mail,” which tells the story of two bad guys who try to stop Christmas. Seating is limited, temperature checks are required prior to entry, and face masks are required for everyone age 2 and up.

Holiday Open House/Toys for Tots Cookout. 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18 and noon-7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19, open house. Noon-6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19 holiday Toys for Tots cookout. Ann Jackson Gallery, 1101 Alpharetta St., Roswell. 770-993-4783.

Check out the gallery’s Art of Dr. Seuss Collection along with pieces from many artists. Saturday’s Toys for Tots cookout is free if you bring a new, unwrapped toy for a child aged newborn to 12.

Christmas in Ireland. 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19. $50 per seat. Alpharetta Cooking School, Alpharetta Commons, 4305 State Bridge Road, Alpharetta. 770-751-8560.

Learn how to cook a warm and hearty Irish holiday meal of smoked salmon with garlic chive spread on soda bread, creamy parsnip soup with bacon and more.


Carriage Rides. 6:30-8:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. Free. Board on S. Peachtree Street, Norcross.

Take a carriage ride through downtown Norcross and be sure to wear a mask. Bring your own blanket if you’d like to stay warm.

Interstellar Echoes. 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. $10 general admission, $99 ticket and table for four package. 37 Main – A Rock Café, 37 E. Main St. NE, Buford. 1-888-415-3517.

Interstellar Echoes, a Pink Floyd Tribute band, takes you back to some of the band’s legendary catalog of songs.

Jaimee Paul & Leif Shires Christmas. 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18. $25-$35. Buford Community Center, 2200 Buford Highway, Buford. 770-945-6762.

Get in the holiday spirit with a jazz Christmas featuring Jamiee Paul and Leif Shires.

“The Nutcracker” with Live Orchestra. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 20. $42.00-$69.50. Infinite Energy Theater, 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth. 770-626-2464.

The Georgia Ballet Theatre presents a performance of the holiday classic “The Nutcracker.” Social distancing and face masks are encouraged.