Jolly Days Winter Wonderland
Bundle up, and head over to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis where the holiday festivities are kicking off early this year with the grand opening of Jolly Days Winter Wonderland. Visitors will enjoy faux fishing, ice-skating and holiday baking. There will also be a castle to climb and a dazzling globe that allows visitors to let it snow at the push of a button. The exhibit will be open from November 23, 2019 – January 5, 2020, and families can visit Santa through December 24.
Santa, His Elves, and Indy 500 Winner Tony Kanaan Magically Appear
The magic does not stop there. Beginning at 8:30am on November 29, families can watch elves rappel from the rooftop, and catch a glimpse of Santa as he zooms to The Children’s Museum in a real Indy Racing Experience two-seater. Those who arrive early can grab a yummy treat from the Gingerbread Café or a free cup of creamy, hot cocoa in the plaza. Family and friends can gather to wave to the museum’s jolliest celebrity and his sleigh-driver, Tony Kanaan, owner of #14 Foyt Racing IndyCar provided by Indy Racing Experience. Afterward, visitors will be invited to head inside to help guide Mr. Claus down the festive red carpet to the 47-foot-long Yule Slide and join the Chorduroys singing group for a holiday sing-along. Get into the holiday spirit and create magical memories that will last a lifetime.
There will be plenty of chances for visitors to take a trip down the slide themselves this season. Here is a timeline to help visitors explore fun activities that are bound to make the season jolly and bright:
Santa’s Big Arrival, November 29 at 9:00am
Friends and family can gather at the plaza in front of the Welcome Center to see Santa race to the museum. Watch him zoom in the two-seat Indy Racing Experience car driven by Tony Kanaan, driver of the #14 Foyt Racing IndyCar. Weather permitting.
Tony Kannan Autograph Signing, November 29, 10:00 – 11:00am
Meet Tony, TK, Kanaan, 2013 Indy 500 winner & 2004 IndyCar Champion, and get an autograph. Driver of the famed #14 Foyt Racing IndyCar, Kanaan has a total of 17 career race wins and 15 pole-positions in the IndyCar Series. He is the first Indy car driver to complete every lap of every race during a season. Kanaan is also the only driver to lead the Indianapolis 500 in each of his first seven starts, and won his first race on his 12th attempt.
The Museum Store Discount, November 29, 8:30 – 10:00am
Santa’s good little shoppers can save big bucks! The Museum Store will offer a 30% Black Friday discount on all purchases made before 10am.
Free Holiday Craft, November 29, 8:30 – 10:30am
Bells make a cheerful sound and are used to “ring out the old and bring in the new” each season! Visitors can customize a bell with ribbon to make a personalized instrument perfect for the holiday season.
Breakfast with Santa, December 1, 7, 8 & 15, 8:00 – 10:00am
Families are invited to enjoy a cheery breakfast and various holiday activities. Continue the excitement with a ride down the Yule Slide and make sure to take a moment to visit with Santa! Ticket prices range between $18.50- $30.00. See the museum’s website for details.
North Pole PJ Party, December 7 & 14, 2:00 – 3:30pm
Put on some festive PJs, and get up close and personal with jolly friends from the North Pole— even Santa himself. Guests are invited to decorate cookies, make a birdfeeder, and create a one of a kind scarf. Ticket prices range between $12.00-$20.00.
The Magic Snowman written by Stephen Murray
This interactive musical is sure to make families feel merry and bright. Visitors to the Lilly Theater within The Children’s Museum will find out if the magic snowman can turn the villagers’ frowns upside down! This one of a kind experience debuts on November 29. See the museum’s website for dates and times.
Holiday Dinner Theater, December 15, 2:45 – 6:30pm
Experience the holiday theater show, The Magic Snowman, from the best seats in the house! After the show, enjoy a buffet dinner, meet and greet the actors, and listen to a special musical performance by The Mistletoes. Jolly Days, the Yule Slide, and visits with Santa will be available exclusively for program participants from 5:15 – 6:30pm. Ticket prices for the event range from $27.00 – $38.75.
Give experiences, not more stuff! A membership to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis lasts for a year. Better yet, the memories will last a lifetime! Who knew a year of fun could fit into a stocking?
December 24: Free Admission Day
Please note the museum is only open from 10:00am – 2:00pm that day. There will be plenty of programming during this festive time so that families can always experience something new: Earn your elf ears, participate in “snowball” fights, sing along with The Mistletoes, and talk to animated winter characters! See the programs happening the day of your visit on the museum’s online calendar. Free Admission Day is presented by Metro by T-Mobile.
Although The Children’s Museum is closed most Mondays during the winter, it aims to provide plenty of opportunities for visiting children and families to enjoy museum festivities during the holidays and winter vacations. The museum will be open the following Mondays from 10:00am – 5:00pm each day:
- December 16, 2019
- December 23, 2019
- December 30, 2019
Please note: The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis will be closed on December 25, 2019.
Santa’s Big Arrival is presented by Riley Children’s at Indiana University Health. Jolly Days Winter Wonderland is presented by Riley Children’s Health and supported by Splenda. The Lilly Theater production, The Magic Snowman, is supported by The Christel DeHaan Family Foundation. The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is proud to partner with Riley Children’s at Indiana University Health, Old National Bank and Ice Miller LLP.
About The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is a nonprofit institution committed to creating extraordinary learning experiences across the arts, sciences, and humanities that have the power to transform the lives of children and families. For more information about The Children’s Museum, visit www.childrensmuseum.org and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook.