If you’re entertaining family or friends in Houston for Thanksgiving this year, check out these Thanksgiving week ideas for lots of free & cheap local fun:
TUESDAY, November 21
Clydesdale Horses — The famous Budweiser Clydesdales will be visiting the Anheuser-Busch Brewery November 21-26 around their Thursday appearance in the Thanksgiving Day parade. Stable viewing begins November 21 and continues November 22, 24-26 from 10 am – 6 pm. Clydesdale Camera Days are November 22 & 24, noon – 2 pm.More info below. Located at 775 Gellhorn.
Four Seasons Holiday Tree Lighting — Don’t miss this special lighting event at Houston’s downtown Four Seasons Hotel, 5 pm. In addition to the tree lighting, it also features live entertainment plus free cookies, hot cocoa and champagne! Valet parking is free, as well, for the special event. Located at 1300 Smith.
WEDNESDAY, November 22
Wortham Tree Lighting — This annual favorite is cancelled this year as a result of flooding in Wortham Theatre. We’ll have to look forward to next year!
Clydesdale Horses — The famous Budweiser Clydesdales will be visiting the Anheuser-Busch Brewery November 21-26 around their Thursday appearance in the Thanksgiving Day parade. Stable viewing is open November 21, 22, 24-26 from 10 am – 6 pm. The first Clydesdale Camera Day is November 22, noon – 2 pm. More info below. Located at 775 Gellhorn.
Children’s Museum of Houston — Enjoy the 12th annual Thanksgiving with Santa where kids are invited to enjoy Thanksgiving related activities (make Thanksgiving vests and pennant flags), watch the Elves on the Shelf Dance Show, and visit with Santa from 1:30 pm – 5 pm. The museum is located at 1500 Binz. Admission is $12 for all museum activities and events.
City Hall Farmers Market — Get healthy and buy local produce for your Thanksgiving Day feast from the City Hall Farmers Market, Wednesday, 11 am – 1:30 pm. You’ll also find locally prepared foods ready to eat for lunch. Located at 901 Bagby.
THURSDAY, November 23
Thanksgiving Day Parade — Don’t miss Houston’s 68th annual H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade. The fun kicks off in downtown Houston Thanksgiving Day, 9 am. Viewing is free along the parade route. The City invited Chandra Wilson to serve as Parade Marshal. The parade begins on Lamar at Smith and ends at Smith and Dallas.
TXU Energy Turkey Trot — Get an early start to your day at TXU Energy Houston Turkey Trot, Thanksgiving morning. It can be a great family memory! Races include 5K, 10K, and kid’s run. Prices are $35-$40 for adults and $15 for kids and seniors. Proceeds benefit families served by Neighborhood Centers.
Uptown Holiday Lighting — This annual favorite is postponed until 2019 due to construction and remodeling on Post Oak Blvd.
FRIDAY, November 24
Turkey Burn Boot Camp — After indulging on Thanksgiving Day, Turkey Burn Boot Camp is a perfect way to get active and burn those calories! The Friday event at 10 am features a live DJ to get you pumped up! Located at the new greenspace by Hotel Zaza Memorial City, The Lawn at Memorial City.
Clydesdale Horses — The famous Budweiser Clydesdales will be visiting the Anheuser-Busch Brewery November 21-26 around their Thursday appearance in the Thanksgiving Day parade. Stable viewing is open November 21, 22, 24-26 from 10 am – 6 pm. The last Clydesdale Camera Day is November 24, noon – 2 pm. More info below. Located at 775 Gellhorn.
Galveston Tree Lighting — Head to the island for the Galveston Holiday Lighting Celebration at Hotel Galvez Friday, 6 pm. Galveston Ballet, handbell choir, and area carolers will perform at this free family event. The beautiful 35-ft. tree is lit on the front lawn! Santa arrives by horse-drawn carriage. Located at 2024 Seawall Blvd.
A Christmas Story Outdoor Movie — Levy Park is hosting a free outdoor movie screening of A Christmas Story, Friday, 6:30 pm. Free movie night is held the last Friday each month at the park. Located at 3801 Eastside.
Deck the Trees Tree Lighting — Alley Theatre is lit up with trees Friday during the 11th annual Deck the Trees event beginning at 7 pm. Located at 615 Texas Ave.
SATURDAY, November 25
Frozen Outdoor Movie — Head to Central Green Park in Katy Saturday for a free screening of Frozen beginning at dusk. Picnic and lawn chairs are welcome. Located at 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
Budweiser Clydesdales — Take an excursion to East Houston to see the Budweiser Clydesdales for free! The horses will be visiting the Anheuser-Busch Brewery November 21-26 around their Thursday appearance in the Thanksgiving Day parade. Stable viewing is open November 21, 22, 24-26 from 10 am – 6 pm. Clydesdale Camera Days are November 22 & 24 from noon – 2 pm. Full Hitch appearances are November 25-26 from noon – 2 pm. Tours are available for purchase as well. The brewery is located at 775 Gellhorn.
Zoo Lights — Enjoy the Houston Zoo in a whole new light with TXU Energy Presents Zoo Lights at the Houston Zoo. The zoo is transformed into a winter wonderland every night through January 14, 2018 with animal-themed light displays and 15 miles of tree lighting, 6 pm – 10 pm each night (till 11 pm weekends). Sip hot chocolate or listen to carolers surrounded by 2 million lights. Don’t miss the 33-ft. Christmas tree, which is a perfect backdrop for your pics! Tickets are $16.95 – $19.95 each (depending on the night). Discount available for Zoo members ($11.95 – $16.95). During Houston Zoo Lights, the zoo will close at 5 pm and reopen at 6 pm.
The ICE at Discovery Green –– If you love the idea of skating outdoors, then head to The ICE at Discovery Green, which is open through January 21, 2018. $14 covers the skating fee for kids and adults ($17 online tickets). Enjoy Cheap Skate Nights on select Mondays for $8 skating. Discovery Green is located downtown at 1500 McKinney.
Home for the Holidays — Old Town Spring hosts its 37th annual Home for the Holidays through December 23. The event features festive lights, family-friendly activities, pics with Santa at his workshop, wagons rides each weekend, live entertainment and more. Marsha’s Petting Zoo will be onsite November 25. Old Town Spring is located between I-45 and Hardy Road, north of 1960 — about 23 miles north of Houston.
Festival of Lights — Head to Galveston for Festival of Lights at Moody Gardens through January 7, 2018, with 1 million lights, 100 animated light displays, live entertainment, plus extra options for ice slide, holiday films, train ride, Ice Land ice sculptures, pics with Santa, and more. Festival of Lights tickets are $15.95/$10.95 for Value Days Thursday – Sunday through December 14. Located at One Hope Blvd. at Moody Gardens.