Unwrap the Magic of Christmas in Grapevine
Story by Terri Marshall, Photos courtesy of Grapevine CVB
Grapevine, Texas is a lovely place to visit any day of the year. The Grapevine Vintage Railroad with beautifully restored Victorian rail cars chugs along. Historic buildings line Main Street. Local wineries share the fruit of the vines and residents exude an unmatched passion for their community. Centrally located between Dallas and Fort Worth, Grapevine is truly a place for every season, but when the Christmas season arrives this enchanting town transforms into a magical wonderland of holiday delights. Welcome to Grapevine, the Christmas Capital of Texas!
During the holidays the city’s historic buildings are dressed up with ribbons, bows and wreaths and set aglow with more than one million lights along Main Street. Musical performances delight residents and visitors alike. Fireworks brighten the night skies and hot chocolate melts the chill in the air. Here are a few reasons you should add Grapevine to your holiday wish list.
The season opens with the largest lighted Christmas parade in North Texas as 100 lighted floats join marching bands along downtown Grapevine’s historic Main Street. Marvel at the nightly Light Show Spectacular and enjoy the singing Christmas tree throughout the holiday season. The Twinkle Light Boat Parade takes the celebration to the water. Watercrafts decorated in all of the finest sparkling lights lead a floating festival from Twin Coves Marina as vessels join in the parade at each marina along the route. The parade is visible from the shores of Lake Grapevine and the Glass Cactus Nightclub at Gaylord Texan Resort.
Speaking of the Gaylord Texan Resort, it certainly adds to the festivities of a Lone Star Christmas featuring ICE! and Santa’s Wild Workshop Snow-tubing. This year’s ICE! exhibit features the ever popular Frosty the Snowman and his friends. Other Lone Star Christmas favorites include a snow-tubing adventure through Santa’s workshop, cookies and milk with Mrs. Claus and gingerbread cookie decorating with Gingy, the most famous of all gingerbread men. www.ChristmasAtGaylordTexan.com
When she’s not at the Gaylord Texan, you can visit with Mrs. Claus aboard Grapevine’s North Pole Express. The Victorian rail coaches of Grapevine’s Vintage Railroad are magically transformed into a holiday haven where guests are greeted by elves singing traditional Christmas songs. More magical moments unveil as the train draws closer to the North Pole when Mrs. Claus makes a special appearance to give each child a “We Believe” silver Santa bell. When the train arrives at the North Pole, a snowy Christmas tree trail filled with magical holiday moments leads to Santa. Jolly St. Nick wishes everyone a very Merry Christmas as he shares his Frosty Chocolate Snow Milk with all the boys and girls.
The little ones will be delighted with the Frosty Chocolate Snow Milk, but the grown-ups can get in the spirit with a ride on the Christmas Wine Trains. Each train features a different Grapevine urban winery. Hors d’ouevres are served and there’s plenty of holiday cheer.
The wine tasting continues at local wineries. Don’t miss the award-winning Sloan & Williams Winery. Military veterans, Alan William Kunst and Ralph Sloan Mattison, Jr., bring integrity and respect to every bottle of wine produced. In the true holiday spirit of giving these talented winemakers actively support Wounded Warriors, Toys for Tots and Angel Flight. Enhance your holiday cheer by ordering a flight of wine ice cream (yes, you read that right…wine ice cream) in six decadent flavors including Cherry Merlot, Red Raspberry Chardonnay and my personal favorite, Chocolate Cabernet. www.sloanwilliams.com
View Christmas through the eyes of Grapevine’s earliest settlers at Nash Farm’s Victorian Christmas. Docent led tours begin in the pole barn with hot cider and cookies and continue through the farmhouse and the farm. While there, make an old fashioned Christmas ornament to add to your holiday tree.
Experience the fascinating craft of glass blowing with a workshop at Vetro Glassblowing Studio. Vetro’s open studio concept provides a hands on opportunity for making a unique glass ornament to add to your collection. Work with the artists to transform colorful ground glass crystals into a thing of beauty. From the fiery blast of the 2,000 degree furnace to the careful puffs of the glass blowing artists, you will treasure the experience as much as the ornament you help create. www.vetroartglass.com
The performing arts round out the holiday celebration options at the Palace Theatre where America’s Got Talent favorites, the Texas Tenors perform classic Christmas music from opera to country favorites – all with a Texas twist. Of course nothing says Christmas like a classic Christmas movie – well unless that movie is shown in a restored 1940’s era theater! Grapevine’s Palace Theatre has the full lineup of the classics including It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Story, A Charlie Brown Christmas and How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
Y’all head on over to Texas now and catch the spirit in Grapevine! www.GrapevineTexasUSA.com/Christmas
Terri is a freelance writer with regular columns on travel, chocolate and bar reviews. She is busy each month visiting new places to bring unique travel destinations and events to you. Yes, it is a sacrifice – but she is willing to do that for her readers! You can see more of Terri’s writing at www.examiner.com where she is the National Chocolate Examiner and at www.barzz.net. Also, check out her blog at www.trippingwithterri.com. You can contact Terri at email@example.com.