Christmas Markets: 16 things to do this weekend in metro Atlanta

Garden Lights Holiday Nights at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens Holidays at SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta Christmas in Callanwolde Snow Mountain at Stone Mountain Park "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" at the Center for Puppetry Arts Magical Nights of Lights: Margaritaville at Lanier Islands Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker Lights of Life from Life University Holiday in the Park at Six Flags over Georgia

Looking for something fun to do with the family this weekend in metro Atlanta? The holiday season is well underway, so you can celebrate the season with everything from shopping for gifts at several holiday markets to enjoying “The Nutcracker” through a drive-in experience.

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

ExploreGeorgia holiday light show ranked among world’s 10 best


Winter at the Market. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4. Free admission and parking. Still Family Farm, 5682 Macland Road, Powder Springs. 678-283-6951.

Grab your holiday shopping list and browse through items created by local vendors and crafters. Bring a camera to take photos with red tractors and other vignettes for your Christmas cards. You can also reserve a time slot with Santa for $32, but you’ll need to take your own photos.

Santa Blitz. starting at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 4 and at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5. Check here for live tracking. various Marietta neighborhoods. For maps of Santa’s route, visit

Santa will be “Blitzen” through some of Marietta’s neighborhoods as he rides on a fire truck and is escorted by police. He’ll travel slowly but will not be stopping along the way, so check for live tracking and be ready to wave at Santa about 15-20 minutes ahead of estimated times.

The Marietta Pilgrimage – A Christmas Home Tour. Friday, Dec. 4-Sunday, Dec. 6 and continuing through Dec. 18. $25 for walking tour booklet. Church-Cherokee Historic District, Marietta. 770-429-1115.

Take a self-guided walking tour of historic homes in Marietta’s Church-Cherokee Historic District and vote on your favorites including “Best Traditional Décor” and “Most Over-the-Top Décor.”

The Nutcracker Drive-In Movie Experience. 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4-Sunday, Dec. 6. $100-$150 per car, $25 for on-demand digital performance. Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre parking lot, 2800 Cobb Galleria Parkway, Atlanta. 404-892-3303.

Watch a filmed version of Atlanta Ballet’s newest production of “The Nutcracker” from your car. Concession tents and a souvenir boutique will be available. Masks are required, and the area will be monitored to ensure social distancing.

ExploreMarietta debuting one of the largest animated light shows this season


Holiday Hangouts. 6 p.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Fernbank, 767 Clifton Road, Atlanta. $20 for non-members, $10 for members. 404-929-6300.

Visit Fernbank’s Winter Wonderland and enjoy holiday-themed activities. The event is for all ages, and themed drinks (including alcohol) and small plates are available for an additional charge. Masks are required, social distancing will be observed, and tickets are available online only.

Santa Ziplines to Treetop Quest. 12:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. $21-$51. Treetop Quest, 2341 Peeler Road, Dunwoody. 770-365-0356.

Go ziplining through the treetops as you enjoy holiday décor and music and get ready for Santa’s visit. You can take pictures of him as he explores Treetop Quest and then visit with Santa. Visits will be contactless, and Santa will wear a face shield and practice social distancing. Facemasks are required for visitors, social distancing will be enforced, and you’re encouraged to bring your own gloves. Gardening gloves will work well, but if you don’t have your own, you can purchase gloves at check-in.

Caffeine and Octane. 8 a.m.-11 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 6. Free. Perimeter Mall, 4400 Ashford Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. 404-551-4454.

Appreciate cars of all makes and models at Perimeter Mall, and if you’re truly a die-hard fan, get up early to watch the parade of cars that arrive well before sunrise.

Free First Saturday – Opossums! 1 p.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Free. Dunwoody Nature Center, 5343 Roberts Drive, Dunwoody. 770-394-3322.

Learn about opossums as you meet one or two. Local author Gina Gallois will share her opossum-themed kids’ books, and a craft is available to take and make at home. Wear a mask and dress for outdoor weather.

North Fulton

See It Snow! 6 p.m.-7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4. Village Green by Alpharetta City Hall, 2 Park Plaza, Alpharetta. 678-297-6000.

Play in a snowy spectacle and admire handmade, life-size nutcrackers and winter décor in downtown Alpharetta.

Alpharetta Christmas Market. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Town Green at City Center, Alpharetta City Hall, Alpharetta City Hall, North and South Broad streets, Alpharetta. 678-865-6608.

Listen to live music as you shop for gifts from over 70 vendors.

“It’s a Wonderful Life” Radio Play. 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4 and Saturday, Dec. 5, 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6 and continuing through Dec. 20. $20. streaming access through Act1 Theater and Broadway on Demand. 770-663-8989.

Get streaming access to this version of the beloved holiday classic “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

Back to Nature Holiday Market. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Free admission to market and CNC. Chattahoochee Nature Center, 9135 Willeo Road, Roswell. 770-992-2055.

Spend the day in nature and shop for unique handmade and/or eco-friendly goods from over 40 local vendors. Timed reservations are required to ensure social distancing.

ExploreGarden Lights, Holiday Nights returns with new rules at Atlanta Botanical Gardens


Holiday Glow on the Green. 6 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4. Free. Peachtree Corners Town Green, 5140 Town Center Blvd., Peachtree Corners.

Celebrate the season and enjoy a free hot chocolate along with a holiday singalong, a performance by the Atlanta Concert Bell Ringers, a concert from Michelle Malone & The Hot Toddies and more. Kids can bring letters to Santa to leave in his special mailbox. Reservations are required (one per group) to ensure social distancing, and face masks are required.

Southeast Exotic Bird Fair. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5 and Sunday, Dec. 6. Adults $4, kids 16 and under free. Gwinnett County Fairgrounds, 2405 Sugarloaf Parkway, Lawrenceville. 813-431-8799.

Admire and learn about exotic birds, and shop for birds and supplies more. Face masks are required.

Deck the Hall. 1 p.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Duluth Town Green, 3142 Hill St., Duluth. 770-476-3434.

Kick off the holiday season with free professional photos with Santa, free holiday caricatures, live entertainment and festive decorations. Social distancing will be observed.

Heart of Norcross Christmas Village Market. 5 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5 and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6. South Peachtree Street, downtown Norcross.

Norcross will host a festive weekend featuring merchant specials, street vendors, live music, entertainment and more. Social distancing will be observed, and attendees should wear face masks.

In Other News