Downtown Kansas City hosts two fabulous holiday traditions — Santa’s arrival at Crown Center and the Mayor’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony. Both events are free and are a perfect way to start feeling holiday cheer in Kansas City!
Santa’s arrival at Crown Center
Bring your children to Crown Center as Santa arrives early on Nov. 25th. Kick off your holiday season at 10 a.m., when he makes his grand entrance in an elaborate horse-drawn carriage and is greeted by his favorite Christmas friends, such as Perry the Penguin and Casey Bear. He will make his way to his usual spot in the specially-decorated Crayola Christmas Land, where he will remain until Christmas Eve. Santa is free to visit with, although there is a fee for photos.
Mayor’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony
At 5:30 pm on the 25th, gather at Crown Center again with your friends and family to witness one of the most magical nights you will ever experience and help celebrate this Kansas City tradition that has inspired many since 1973. The Mayor’s Christmas tree symbolizes the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Fund, which helps assist the city’s less fortunate citizens. The tree is one of the tallest in the nation, soaring to a height of 100 feet, and the lights nearly put the sun to shame with their brilliance.
This year, R&B singer Janelle Monae will assist Mayor Sly James in flipping the switch. Admission is free and there is always a healthy turnout, so plan to arrive early.
Fun fact: After the holidays, the tree is used to make unique wooden ornaments that will be offered for sale the following year, with the sales going towards the tree fund. Ornaments from last year’s tree are on sale now at the Crown Center office.
Address: 2450 Grand Boulevard, Kansas City, Missouri, 64108