Houses are adorned with bright, colorful lights, the air bites your nose when you venture outside, and you probably have an ongoing list of gift ideas for family and friends. The holiday season is here and we couldn’t be more excited.
The holidays are a time of celebration and cheer where we spend quality time with loved ones. In this special part of the year, we observe many traditions, including exchanging gifts and eating delicious food. But our local Charleston community will also have fun holiday activities you can participate in. Check out events and shows you can see, great local food, where you can find holiday gifts, and get your perfect Christmas tree. Enjoy our Charleston holiday guide below, and if there’s anything you’d like us to add, get in touch!
Our Favorite 2018 Holiday Shows and Events in Charleston
Parades, shows, and concerts are the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. There’s plenty going on in Charleston for you to see and enjoy.
- Winter EtsyWV Mart. Support West Virginia’s small businesses in a fun shopping day where you can buy all your holiday gifts from local crafters and Etsy shopkeepers. Held at the Charleston West Holiday Inn on November 24th.
- Charleston Christmas Parade. On Saturday, December 1 at 10am, Charleston has its annual Christmas Parade. Come out to enjoy the music, festivities, and Santa Claus.
- 1st Annual Tinseled Tree Contest. Throughout the whole month of December, you can come view all of the beautiful tree entries at the Charleston Civic Center’s first annual Tinseled Tree Contest that local groups and organizations have taken part in.
- The Roadside Christmas Tour. On Saturday, December 1 at 6pm, the Roadside Christmas Tour will be at Charleston Coliseum. Performing artists include Matthew West, Plumb, Matt Maher, and more!
- Elf the Musical. On December 6 – 9, the Children’s Theatre of Charleston will be performing a live musical of Elf at the Charleston Civic Center’s Little Theater.
- The Nutcracker with the WV Symphony Orchestra. On Friday December 14 at 7:30pm and Saturday December 15 at 2:00pm, the Charleston Ballet and the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra will perform the Nutcracker at the Clay Center.
- Cross Lanes Branch Library Holiday Open House. On December 1 all during the day, you can participate in the Cross Lanes Branch Library Open House. There will be holiday crafts and lots of fun while we enjoy the parade, special visitors for kids, and more.
- Nativities from Around the World. From November 30-December 8 at 4-9 p.m. daily, the Nativities from Around the World display is a nondenominational exhibit where you can see nativity scenes from myriad nations. Get in the spirit of the holidays and see how different countries depict a traditional Christmas scene. It’s free and wheelchair accessible. They will also have a live Christmas musical program on December 2 from 6-7:45 p.m., and a children’s room is available from December 2-8.
- South Charleston Christmas Parade. The South Charleston Christmas Parade is an event for the whole family on Saturday December 8 at noon. There will be plenty of fun floats and Santa and Mrs. Claus!
- 98° at Christmas. Watch the iconic group 98° perform Christmas songs at 98° at Christmas live on stage on December 9 from 7-9pm at the Clay Center.
- Trans Siberian Orchestra 2018 Winter Tour. Witness a rock holiday favorite when the Trans Siberian Orchestra performs their 2018 winter tour at the Charleston Convention Center on December 13 at 7 to 10pm.
- Sounds of the Season. Listen to all of your holiday favorites the Clay Center as Guest Conductor Michelle Merrill leads the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra in a concert you won’t want to miss.
- St. Albans Festival of Lights. Every day up to December 26, you can visit the St. Albans Festival of Lights in City Park from 6-9pm. You can see the magical displays of inspired light decorations with friends and family.
Our Favorite Charleston Bars and Restaurants for Holiday Cheer
The holidays are a great time to get a good meal at a local restaurant with friends and family. When the city has holiday lights hung up and everyone’s in the holiday spirit, it’s fun to just enjoy the atmosphere. Make sure to check out the following restaurants.
- The Boulevard Tavern. With inspired signature cocktails and a schedule full of live music and open mic nights, The Boulevard Tavern is the perfect place to kick off the weekend.
- Big Joe’s Bar & Grill. Looking for a place with a local pub vibe? Big Joe’s is the place for you. Their menu is American cuisine, and they specialize in smoked meats and burgers made from scratch. They also have games like darts and pool, or you can relax and watch your favorite team on their six televisions.
- Blue Grass Kitchen. Their focus is farm-to-table food that’s friendly for every type of customer. The 1920’s décor and live music make this a fantastic place to hang out.
- Sam’s Uptown Café. A staple of Charleston for the past 20 years, Sam’s Uptown Café serves delicious food in a laid-back environment. They have a good selection of local craft beers and imported beers. Sam’s also recently remodeled their upstairs into a lounge area.
- Dem 2 Brothers & A Grill. This restaurant lives and breathes barbecue. Their food has been featured on the Food Network and their food trucks have won awards. For local flavor, this is the place to go.
- Moxxee Coffee. Need a cup of coffee to get through the rest of your day or a refreshing tea? Moxxee Coffee has you covered. Their delicious blends will make you want to try more than one flavor.
Where to Get Great Local Christmas Gifts in Charleston
Gift-giving is a big part of the holiday season. Whether you need to get something for your family or friends, Charleston has plenty of shops for you to get the best presents for the people you care about.
- Kid Country Toys. This local toy store has been in Charleston since 1962. They pride themselves in having a large selection of interesting and reasonably priced toys, with friendly employees who are always ready to help.
- Taylor Books. Standing since 1995, this store combines an independent bookstore, café, and art gallery. You can peruse the aisles for the book that will make the perfect present as you sip on some delicious coffee or nibble on a scone. The gallery has local art and handmade crafts. They also host many events like live music, story hour, and creative writing meet-ups.
- Kin Ship Goods. They sell clothing, accessories, and home goods with West Virginia inspiration. Kin Ship Goods captures the local spirit with a wide selection of unique items. You can visit their brick and mortar store in Charleston but they also have a store online.
- Sullivan’s Records. For the music lover in your life, Sullivan’s Records has the perfect vinyl for them. With a relaxed atmosphere and helpful staff, you’ll be able to find the album you need.
- Oddbird A Gift Emporium. Have a tricky person to buy for? Check out Oddbird A Gift Emporium. Their quirky selection of gifts for every aspect of your life. Check out the art, home goods, and bath accessories
Where to Get Fresh Cut Christmas Trees in Charleston
One beloved holiday tradition is getting the perfect Christmas tree to decorate with lights and ornaments. Picking out the best one from a local farm is a fun activity for everyone. Charleston has a few fantastic Christmas tree farms within driving distance that you can get a beautiful holiday tree.
- Evergreen Christmas Tree Farms. About an hour from Charleston, Evergreen Christmas Tree Farms is one of the closest places to get a Christmas tree. They sell Scotch Pine, White Pine, and Norway Spruce. They’ll bale and load the tree when possible, and provide saws for you to cut your tree down.
- French Creek Christmas Trees. This farm is an hour and 50 minute away from Charleston. French Creek Christmas Trees focuses heavily on creating special memories, and encourage to bring as many family members or friends as you can. They’re also pet friendly.
- Zion Nursery. Family owned and operated for 40 years, Mt. Zion Nursery is a 2 hour and 12 minute drive from Charleston. They’re the oldest Christmas tree farm in West Virginia, and have a gorgeous selection of Colorado Blue Spruce, Norway Spruce, White Pine, and Scotch Pine trees.
Happy Holidays from DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC
At DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC, we believe in giving back to the community. That’s why we participate in the following:
- Toys for Tots. We donate to Toys for Tots to help give children in less fortunate families a special Christmas.
- Mountain Mission. We also participate in Mountain Mission, who helps families in need. We have volunteered to deliver food to families around Christmas.
- Secret Santa Foundation. We support another organization dedicated to helping kids and giving them a great Christmas.
While the holidays are an exciting and fun time, the season can also bring some stress because you will probably have a lot to accomplish. Remember to enjoy the decorations and drink some hot chocolate and not get too caught up in the busy holiday bustle.
We hope you have a safe holiday season and a Happy New Year.