Meet Santa, hear holiday tunes, buy local crafts and celebrate the season with these events during November and December in Cobb County.
Turkey Chase 5K Fun Run and 2K Walk
9 a.m., Nov. 21. Costs vary by age, event and date of registration. Main Street between Lemon and Federal streets, Acworth. 770-917-1234. www.acworthturkeychase.com
The Turkey Chase has a 5K run, 2K walk and a "little pilgrim trot" for kids up to age 5. All participants are asked to bring a non-perishable food item to receive their race number. Sign-up costs run between $5 and $20 through noon Nov. 18 and increase afterward.
5:30-9 p.m., Dec. 4. Free. Main Street, historic downtown Acworth. 770-917-1234. http://cityofacworth.org
Kick off the holiday season with Acworth's hometown tree lighting, and stay for pictures with Santa and his elves, hot chocolate and live performances.
Brian Setzer Orchestra 12th Annual Christmas Rocks! Tour
8 p.m., Dec. 5. $35-$75. Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, 2800 Cobb Galleria Parkway, Atlanta 30339. 800-745-3000. www.cobbenergycentre.com
Hear this three-time, Grammy-winning guitarist, vocalist and songwriter put a twist on holiday music for one night only. This 18-piece orchestra is sure to blow away crowds for the 12th year in a row.
10 a.m.-8 p.m., Dec. 4, and 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Dec. 5-6. $10 for adults, $8 for seniors (65+) online; ticket prices increase at the door. Under 12 free. Cobb Galleria Centre, Two Galleria Parkway, Atlanta 30339. 770-559-0293. www.shoppeartisan.com
Start your holiday shopping with one-of-a-kind gifts from vendors featured on Grommet, Etsy and Pinterest. Tickets are good for all three days of the event.
Holiday in the Park
4-10 p.m. Nov. 21–Dec. 23 (excluding Thanksgiving) and 2–10 p.m. Dec. 26–Jan. 3, 2016. Six Flags Over Georgia, 275 Riverside Parkway SW, Austell 30168. 770-739-3400. www.sixflags.com/overgeorgia
Guests can ride all the usual Six Flags rides while enjoying light displays, a 130-foot Christmas tree and the North Pole Express.
Tacky Sweater Party
4-10 p.m. Dec. 12-13. Wear a tacky sweater and get buy-one-get-one-free general admission tickets to Holiday in the Park. Six Flags Over Georgia, 275 Riverside Parkway, SW, Austell 30168. 770-739-3400. www.sixflags.com/overgeorgia
Break out the classic holiday tacky sweater for buy-one-get-one-free general admission tickets to Six Flags Over Georgia's Holiday in the Park celebration. Over one million lights, festive shows, Santa himself and much more can be expected.
Annual Christmas Tree Lighting
6 p.m., Dec. 4. Free. Collar Park, 2625 Joe Jerkins Blvd., Austell 30168. 770-944-4309. www.austellga.gov
Welcome Santa and Mrs. Claus to town with an abundance of holiday-themed festivities, free hot dogs, hot chocolate, pastries and musical entertainment provided by local high school choruses.
Christmas Tree Lighting
5-8 p.m., Dec. 3. Free. Glover Park in Historic Marietta Square, Marietta. 770-794-5601. www.mariettasquare.com
Mr. and Mrs. Claus will arrive at 5:20 p.m., joined by the singing of holiday carols by local high school choruses. Santa lights the tree at 6 p.m. and will stay to visit with children until 8 p.m. under the park gazebo.
Holiday Carriage Rides
3-7 p.m., Wednesdays from Dec. 2 through Dec. 16. Free. The Avenue, 3625 Dallas Highway, Marietta 30064. www.shoptheavenue.com
Visit with Santa, enjoy Christmas music and take a complimentary carriage ride while you do your holiday shopping. Guests will also have the option to get photos with Santa.
Lights of Life
6-10 p.m., Nov. 26-Dec. 31. $10 per car on weekends, $5 per car Monday through Thursday. Life University, 1269 Barclay Circle, Marietta 30062. 678-331-4334. www.life.edu
Touted as the most affordable holiday light show in the Southeast, the Lights of Life is a yearly tradition. It has new displays each year, including a 65-foot Santa and his sleigh that is the tallest in the Southeast.
Winter Wonderland on the Marietta Square
Nov. 20-Jan. 4, 2016. 4:30–10 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 4:30–11 p.m. Fridays; 10 a.m.–11 p.m. Saturdays; noon–10 p.m., Sundays. $12 includes entrance and skate rental. Marietta Welcome Center, No. 4 Depot St., Marietta 30060. www.winterwonderlandmariettasquare.com
This event features live music and an open-air ice skating rink, plus "Santa's Workshop" where children can make their own toys. From Dec. 3 until Christmas, guests can meet Santa.
The Georgia Ballet's "The Nutcracker"
Dec. 4-6 (times vary). $17-$45. Jennie T. Anderson Theatre, Cobb County Civic Center, 548 S. Marietta Parkway SE, Marietta 30060. 770-528-0881. www.georgiaballet.org
This time-honored winter favorite will delight with the adventures of dancing snowflakes, dueling soldiers and enchanting sugar-plum fairies performed by the Georgia Ballet.
The Marietta Pilgrimage, a Christmas Home Tour through Marietta
9 a.m.-6 p.m., Dec. 5; Candlelight Tour, 7-9:30 p.m., Dec. 5; and 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Dec. 6. $20 for the day tours, $15 for the Candlelight Tour and $25 for both. Marietta Welcome Center, No. 4 Depot St., Marietta 30060. 770-429-1115. www.mariettapilgrimage.com
For the 29th year, visitors to Historic Marietta Square can tour six beautifully decorated private homes polished and primed for the holiday season. There are also several historic public buildings along this self-guided tour.
"It's a Wonderful Life" Marathon
Noon, 3 p.m., 6 p.m. and 9 p.m., Dec. 21. $8 for adults, $7 for seniors, students and military. Earl Smith Strand Theatre, 117 North Park Square, Marietta 30060. 770-293-0080. www.earlsmithstrand.org
Everyone's favorite Christmas movie will be shown not just once, but four times at the renowned Strand Theatre. Arrive half an hour early for a holiday pre-show and sing along with the Mighty Allen Theatre Organ.
Sienafest Craft Fair
9 a.m.–4 p.m., Nov. 14. Free. St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, 1618 Ben King Road, Kennesaw 30144. 770-428-7139. www.facebook.com
Featuring 50 local crafters selling a variety of goods ranging from candles, soaps, lotions, jewelry, pottery and decor, the Sienafest Craft Fair is another fantastic place to kick off your holiday shopping.
Holiday Gift Shop
Nov. 13-15. 10 a.m.–8 p.m. Friday; 9 a.m.–6 p.m. Saturday, noon–6 p.m. , Sunday. Free. Carrie House, 2838 Cherokee St. NW, Kennesaw 30144. 770-422-9714. www.kennesaw-ga.gov
Local arts and crafts products ranging from jewelry to knitted works, including pottery from students and instructors of the Kennesaw Parks and Rec pottery program, are will be on sale.
Tree Lighting Program
6-7 p.m., Dec. 1. Free. Tunnel Plaza (Across the street from Revival on Main), downtown Kennesaw. 770-422-9714. www.kennesaw-ga.gov/
Nothing gets you more in the holiday spirit than officially lighting the Christmas tree, so join your neighbors in downtown Kennesaw as the mayor illuminates the beautiful lights for another year.
A Day with Santa
Noon–6 p.m., Dec. 5. Free. Downtown Kennesaw, 2828 Cherokee St. NW, Kennesaw 30144. 770-422-9714. www.adaywithsanta.com
Santa arrives at noon in a Christmas parade down Main Street, accompanied by marching bands, festive floats, vintage cars and more. Stay for snow tubing, inflatables, kids' crafts, visits with Santa, live entertainment and a holiday market.
Handel's "Messiah": Choral Ensembles and Symphony Orchestra
8 p.m., Dec. 3. $10 in advance, $15 at the door. Bailey Performance Center, Kennesaw State University, 1000 Chastain Road, Building 30, Kennesaw 30144. 470-578-6650. https://calendar.kennesaw.edu
You don't have to be a professional singer or musician to enjoy this classical performance. In fact, you may find yourself humming along to the "Hallelujah Chorus" grand finale.
Breakfast with Santa
8-9:15 a.m. and 10-11:15 a.m., Dec. 12. $6 in advance or $8 at the door (space is limited). Ben Robertson Community Center, 2753 Watts Drive, Kennesaw 30144. 770-422-9714. www.kennesaw-ga.gov
Enjoy an all-you-can-eat holiday breakfast courtesy of the Kennesaw-Acworth Optimist Club, featuring table-to-table visits from jolly old St. Nick.
Christmas House Arts and Crafts Show
Dec. 4-13. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, 2-6 p.m., Sunday. Free. Mable House Arts Center, 5239 Floyd Road, Mableton 30126. 770-819-3285. mablehouse.org
More than 30 years in the running, this art show features unique and affordable handmade gifts. Find one-of-a-kind items at this annual event.
Candy Cane Hunt
10 a.m.–noon, Dec. 5. Free. Mable House Arts Center, 5239 Floyd Road, Mableton 30126. 770-819-3285. mablehouse.org
Let your little ones enjoy a holiday-themed candy hunt featuring all of seasonal costumed characters.
Christmas on the Lawn
6-8 p.m., Dec. 4. Free. Town square lawn, downtown Powder Springs. 770-943-1666. www.cityofpowdersprings.org
The city hosts a Christmas tree lighting on the town square lawn, plus Christmas carols, hot chocolate, cookies and pictures with Santa.
9-11 a.m., Dec. 5. $10 adults, $5 ages 4-12. Family participation packages are $25. Wild Horse Park, 3820 Macedonia Road, Powder Springs 30127. 770-943-1666. www.cityofpowdersprings.org
Get your exercise in at the Reindeer 5K Fun Run on the scenic Wild Horse Trail, ending with tasty hot chocolate and cookies.
Holiday Celebration & Christmas Tree Lighting
5-8 p.m., Dec. 1. Free. Smyrna Community Center, 200 Village Green Circle, Smyrna 30080. 770-431-2842. www.smyrnacity.com
This annual event marks the beginning of Smyrna's beautiful holiday lights downtown with Santa's lighting of the Christmas tree.
Celtic Christmas with Lynn Swanson Festival Singers and "Ah Surely" Celtic Band
7–9:30 p.m., Dec. 12. $5-$40. St. Benedict's Episcopal Church, 2160 Cooper Lake Road, Smyrna 30080. 404-909-8357. www.festivalsingers.org
Irish music and dance combine with the Lynn Swanson Festival Singers for a merry celebration. The "Ah Surely!" band is joining forces with the 54-member chorus for a holiday concert.