Visitors admire the lights during the 2018 Holiday Nights at Tohono Chul.

This list of things to do around Tucson, Marana, Oro Valley and Sahuarita includes events by local businesses and organizations including markets, music and more.

Things change quickly these days, so check for the latest information. Links are included with every activity listed.

Three year-old Carter Kirkendall runs her hand along the wall of lights near the pollinators exhibit as she and her mother Kelsey take in the sights during Zoo Lights at Reid Park Zoo,Tucson, Ariz., December 4, 2020.

Customer appreciation party at The Shelter

Join the party at The Shelter Cocktail Lounge for free pizza, popcorn, and discounted merch.

When: Thursday, Dec. 2, 5-11:45 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Discovery Night at Children's Museum Tucson

Discovery Night includes bilingual story time, interactive pop-up science experiments, and art projects, plus access to the rest of the museum's exhibits.

When: Thursdays, 5-7 p.m.

Where: Children's Museum Tucson, 200 S. Sixth Ave.

Cost: Free

Visit the event page for more information.

La Encantada's Enchanted Snowfall

Watch faux flurries fall in the open-air shopping center courtyard at La Encantada shopping mall. During these snow-filled weekends there will also be live music, hot chocolate provided by Blanco Tacos + Tequila and caroling. Bring the kids or make it a date night.

When: Fridays and Saturdays, now through Dec. 18, 6-6:15 p.m. and 6:45-7 p.m.

Where: The La Encantada courtyard, 2905 E. Skyline Drive

Cost: Free

Visit the website for more information.

BrewLights 2021

This holiday event at Reid Park Zoo will have beer tastings from more than 10 breweries, plus holiday lights and live music performed by the After 7 Band. Remember to get a ticket for your designated driver, too! 

When: Friday, Dec. 3, 6 p.m.

Where: Reid Park Zoo, 3400 E. Zoo Ct.

Cost: $7-$35, ages 2 and under are free

Visit the event page for more information.

Passersby get cell phone photos of one of the 18 Korean lanterns helping light the paths for Luminaria Nights at the Tucson Botanical Gardens, Saturday, December 8, 2018, Tucson, Ariz.

Wanderland at Tucson Botanical Gardens

Take a walk among thousands of luminarias and Korean lanterns at the Tucson Botanical Gardens, plus enjoy holiday music and a 10-foot-tall succulent tree.

When: Dec. 3-31. Check the schedule here

Where: Tucson Botanical Gardens, 2150 N. Alvernon Way

Cost: $4-$15

Visit the website for more information. 

ZooLights 2021: Holiday Magic

Enjoy a night at the zoo with beautiful twinkle-light decorations and animal sculptures. Sip hot cocoa as you stroll through a lit wonderland filled with falling snow, visits with Santa, scheduled entertainment and sweet treats.

When: Daily, Dec. 3-30, 6-8 p.m. 

Where: Reid Park Zoo, 3400 E. Zoo Ct.

Cost:  $7-$11, Zoo members get $3 off admission.

Visit the Reid Park Zoo website for more information.

Tree lighting and holiday market in Sierra Vista

Join Sierra Vista Area Chamber of Commerce and Kiwanis Club of Sierra Vista for their annual tree lighting event. This two-day event will include a tree lighting, visits with Santa, a parade, music, a holiday market and kids activities.

When: Friday, Dec. 3, 4-11 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 4, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Where: Veterans Memorial Park, 3105 E. Fry Blvd.

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Virtual Open Studio Tours

Open Studio Tours include self-guided showcases of artist studios and workspaces. You can interact with working artists, see where art is created and learn more about the artistic process.

When: Dec. 3-12

Where: Various locations

Cost: Free to attend

The collection at Worlds of Words is impressive — especially when you consider that the thousands of titles now lining the shelves originated with a first-grade-teacher-turned-professor who began acquiring books years ago.

Worlds of Words children's book sale 

Take a look through 2020-2021 titles at the Worlds of Words book sale, where there will be discounted books for kids and teens. 

When: Friday, Dec. 3, noon to 5 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: University of Arizona campus in the College of Education building, 1430 E. Second St.

Cost: Free to attend, bring money for books

Visit the event page for more information.

Miracle on Congress Street

Every weekend before Christmas, kids can visit with Santa and enjoy ice cream from Hub Ice Cream. Adults can purchase festive drinks from the bar.

When: Weekends Dec. 3 through Dec. 19. Friday-Saturday, 4:30-6 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.

Where: Playground Bar & Lounge, 278 E. Congress St.

Cost: Everything is free except the cocktails. Donations for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona are encouraged

Visit the Facebook page for more information.

Art and crafts festival on Oracle

Shop for your holiday gifts with over 40 artists displaying their pottery, photography, jewelry, paintings, gourmet food, household furniture, children's toys, clothing and more.

When: Friday-Sunday, Dec. 3-5, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Music under the stars

Watch local band Ryanhood on the plaza of Hotel Congress.

When: Friday, Dec. 3, 7 p.m.

Where: Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress St.

Cost: $20

Visit the event page for more information and to buy tickets.

Oro Valley Virtual Festival of the Arts + holiday tree lighting 

The Oro Valley Festival of the Arts and Holiday Tree Lighting is a two-day festival with live music, art, food, kid-friendly activities and, of course, the lighting of the tree. 

When: Saturday-Sunday, Dec. 4-5, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Oro Valley Marketplace, 12155 N. Oracle Road

Cost: Free to attend, food available for purchase

Visit the event page for more information.

The Christmas tree comes alive for the crowd during the Marana Holiday Festival and Tree Lighting in 2016.

Marana Holiday Festival & Christmas Tree Lighting

Start the holiday season with a 25-foot Christmas tree lighting with musical synchronized dancing lights, meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, and enjoy holiday performances, a holiday kiddie train, a bounce zone, an inflatable zone, a foam snow dance party, over 40 local food trucks, crafting stations and a holiday market.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 3-8 p.m.

Where: Town of Marana, 11555 W. Civic Center Dr.

Cost: Free to attend, food available for purchase

Visit the event page for more information.

Tamal & Heritage Festival at Casino Del Sol

Attend an event in celebration of tamales, featuring a tamale contest, live entertainment, food vendors and artisan vendors.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: AVA Amphitheater, 5655 W. Valencia Road

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information. 

Desert Air Market

Shop with over 20 local makers and crafters at this outdoor market. Plus, typewriter poet Tina Lentz-McMillan will be there!

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Vail Fest

It's time for shopping, music, food and fun! Vail Fest will have family-fun events such as go-kart races, a petting zoo, horseback riding, corn hole, horseshoe tournaments and more.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Pima County Fairgrounds, 11300 S. Houghton Road

Cost: Parking is $5 per car, admission to the event is free

Visit the Vail Fest website for more information. 

Christmas tree lighting with Church of the Nazarene

Enjoy hayrides, games, food, a live nativity and live music from teens. Plus, watch as the church lights up their 30-foot Christmas trees synced to music.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 6-8 p.m.

Where: Oro Valley Church of the Nazarene, 500 W. Calle Concordia

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Deck the Halls at AZ Hops and Vines 

Enjoy six wines paired with cookies, plus enjoy live music, a holiday market, an ugly Christmas sweater contest and Santa.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: AZ Hops and Vines, 3450 AZ-82, Sonoita

Cost: $27.25

Visit the AZ Hops and Vines event page for more information.

Holiday ornament workshop

Learn to make holiday ornaments out of devil's claw, gourds and okra pods at Mission Garden. The garden's volunteers will guide you in this fun holiday workshop.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Food Truck Night on the east side

Grab some food and shop for handmade crafts, jewelry, arts, clothing, vintage items, antiques and more.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend, bring money for shopping and food 

Visit the event page for more information.

Cars and Coffee

Visit a free casual car meet with free coffee and stroll along roaring cars with family and friends. 

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 7-9 a.m.

Where: Lowe's parking lot, 4075 W. Ina Road

Cost: Free to attend 

Visit the event page for more information.

Food, shopping and gift wrapping with Harley-Davidson 

Join Old Pueblo Harley-Davidson for free food, new and used bikes, and free gift wrapping.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4 and 18, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

A CDO Blonde at Catalina Brewing Company, 6918 N, Camino Martin, on Nov. 13, 2018, in Tucson, Ariz.

Open Mic Night at Catalina Brewing Co.

Bring your instrument, guitars and your love for karaoke songs. It's the perfect atmosphere for beginner musicians.

When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 8-11 p.m. 

Where: Catalina Brewing Co., 6918 N. Camino Martin

Cost: Free to attend, brews available for purchase

Visit the event page for more information.

St. Philip's Plaza Market

Enjoy your shopping in the open, cool shade and surrounded by peaceful flowing fountains. Shop for uniquely handmade, handcrafted, homegrown and home-baked products at St. Philip's Plaza.

When: Saturdays and Sundays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: St. Philip's Plaza, 4280 N. Campbell Ave.

Cost: Free to attend, but bring money for shopping

Visit the St. Philip's Plaza Market Facebook page for more information.

Antique Fair at Medella Vina Ranch

Shop from vintage and antique vendors at Medella Vina's fair this Sunday.

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

Where: Medella Vina Ranch, 4450 S. Houghton Road

Cost: Free to attend, bring money for shopping

Visit the Facebook event page for more information.

Chaverim's Daffodil Chanukah Celebration

Join Congregation Chaverim's Chanukah Celebration and Daffodil Project Installation and plant daffodils, sing songs and eat sufganiyot. The Daffodil Project aims to build a worldwide Holocaust Memorial by planting daffodils in memory of the children who perished in the Holocaust.

When: Sunday, Dec. 5, 10 a.m. to noon

Cost: Free to attend

Visit their website for more information.

Donut Wars: Hanukkah Edition

Join PJ Library to celebrate the last night of Hanukkah with Sufganiyot Wars aka Donut Wars. Bring the kids for some fun and decorate donuts with frosting, sprinkles, pretzel sticks and more. 

When: Sunday, Dec. 5, 3-4 p.m.

Where: Location will be emailed upon registering

Cost: Free to attend, register here

Visit their website for more information.

Shalom Baby Hanukkah Story and Play Time

This event for families with kids ages 3 years and under includes play and Hanukkah-themed readings. Registration is required.

When: Sunday, Dec. 5, 10-11 a.m.

Cost: Free to attend 

Visit the event page for more information.

Kids Hanukkah party

Celebrate Hanukkah with We Rock The Spectrum at a kids party including open gym, games, food and a themed craft.

When: Sunday, Dec. 5, 10 a.m. to noon

Where: We Rock The Spectrum, 4811 E. Grant Road

Cost: $19 for kids, $5 for adults

Visit the event page for more information.

Holiday Lights at Tohono Chul

Walk amid live music along paths lit with more than a million twinkling lights. Enjoy treats and a handful of vendors. Masks are required.

When: Fridays-Saturdays, Dec. 10-11 and 17-18, 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Where: Tohono Chul, 7366 N. Paseo Del Norte

Cost: $6-$17; kids under 5 years old and under enter for free

Visit the event page for more information. 

Marana Christmas Express 

Grab the kids and enjoy a train ride through Christmas light displays in Marana. Tickets are sold online only.

When: Dec. 10-12 and 17-23, 5-9 p.m.

Where: Marana Christmas Express, 14950 N. Trico Road

Cost: $15 per person online, ages 2 and under are free

Visit the event page for more information. 

Julie Axon, left, and Suzie Martini, residents of Phoenix, Ariz., check out Leo Aguirre's (not pictured) hand crafted bottled wind chimes during the 50th annual Fourth Avenue Winter Street Fair on N. 4th Ave. on December 13th, 2019.

Fourth Avenue Street Fair

Visit Tucson's largest street fair with hundreds of vendors to shop from, plus live music and food. 

When: Friday-Sunday, Dec. 10-12, 10 a.m. to dusk

Where: Fourth Avenue, between Eighth Street and University Boulevard

Cost: Free to attend, bring money for food and shopping

Visit the event website for more information. 

Polar Express Story with Santa

Visit this event for a story time with Santa, plus enjoy special treats and photo opportunities. 

When: Friday, Dec. 10 and 17, 5-6:30 p.m.

Where: Our Play Place, 3951 W. Costco Dr.

Cost: $17, two adults are included with children's admission

Visit the event page for more information.

Drive-in movie: The Polar Express

Hop in the car with the kids and pack a few blankets to watch a holiday classic at this drive-in event. 

When: Saturday, Dec. 11, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Quail Creek-Veterans Municipal Park, 1905 N. Old Nogales Hwy

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Merry Mariachi and Tamales

Celebrate the holiday season with a live performance from Mariachi Salvajes and pick up tamales from La Indita. Plus, kids can participate in a bilingual children’s hour.

When: Saturday, Dec. 11, noon to 4 p.m.

Where: AZ Hops and Vines, 3450 AZ-82, Sonoita

Cost: Free to attend, drinks and food available for purchase

Visit the event page for more information. 

Miniature lit zoo at a residential home in Winterhaven.

Winterhaven Festival of Lights

Celebrate the season by walking through the multiple streets of lights in the Winterhaven neighborhood. Bring a donation (canned food or cash) for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona. 

When: Daily, Dec. 11-26, 6 p.m.

Cost: Free, wagon rides and food available for purchase

Visit the website for more information. 

Yoga with kittens

Have a purr-fectly fun time at the studio with low-impact poses and stretching with cute little kittens from Southern Arizona Cat Rescue. If you need holiday gift ideas, the studio has tickets for future classes available for purchase.

When: Saturday, Dec. 11, 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Where: Barefoot Studio, 7053 N. Oracle Road

Cost: $20

Visit the event page for more information.

Krampus Christmas Party at Woolly Fern

Shop with local makers for quirky holiday finds at this Christmas market.

When: Saturday, Dec. 11, noon to 8 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend, but bring money for shopping

Visit the event page for more information.

Winter Market 2021

Join the Girl Scouts for some hot cocoa and shopping for crafts and winter gift items this holiday season. 

When: Saturday, Dec. 11, 2-5 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend 

Visit the event page for more information.

Holiday Bazaar In the Mercado District

Spend your afternoon rummaging for treasure with 40 vendors at the Mercado San Agustin.

When: Friday-Saturday, Dec. 17-18, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, Dec. 19, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Mercado San Agustin, 100 S. Avenida del Convento

Cost: Free to attend, but bring money for shopping

Visit the MSA Annex website for more information. 

Holiday festival at Tanque Verde

Get your last minute holiday shopping done and visit 40 local artists and crafters at this art festival. 

When: Friday-Saturday, Dec. 17-18, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, Dec. 19, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend, bring money for shopping

Visit Art Attack AZ event page for more information.

Winter Wonderland

Celebrate the holidays with free hot cocoa, s'mores, Christmas lights and a live nativity scene.

When: Friday, Dec. 17, 6-8 p.m.

Where: Foothills Community Church, 3301 W. Overton Road

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

Sahuarita Winter Festival 

Hop in the car with family and friends and stop by this festival for holiday lights, music and tasty food trucks.

When: Saturday, Dec. 18, 5-9 p.m.

Cost: Free to attend, food available for purchase

Visit the event page for more information.

The historic train depot in downtown Tucson, 2012.

Family fun at the Historic Train Depot

Join the Southern Arizona Transportation Museum for photos with Santa and holiday music.

When: Saturday, Dec. 18, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: Southern Arizona Transportation Museum, 414 N. Toole Ave.

Cost: Free. Canned food donations to the Community Food Bank are accepted

Visit the event page for more information. 

Dirty T Punk Rock Flea Market

This shopping pop-up has vintage finds, antiques, art, live tattooing, food trucks and a car show. Bring a new, unwrapped toy to stuff the hearse for the holiday season.

When: Sunday, Dec. 19, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: Park Place Mall, 5870 E. Broadway near the Sears parking lot

Cost: Free to attend

Visit the event page for more information.

New Year's Eve at The Maverick

Enjoy a late night with live music, dancing and drinks. 

When: Friday, Dec. 31, 5 p.m.

Cost: $15 per person, includes a champagne toast. $25 and $50 tables available for reservations

Visit the event page for more information.


#ThisIsTucson is member-supported. Your contribution helps our team bring you stories that keep you connected to the community. Become a member today.