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Guide to Holiday Happenings

There will be no shortage of holiday cheer this season in the area encompassing Coeur d’Alene, Hayden and Post Falls. Events catered to all ages and interests are lined up during December through New Year’s Day, allowing the region to thrive in celebration of the most festive time of year. There is guaranteed to be something for everyone on the schedule for Coeur d’Alene’s holiday happenings!

On Friday, December 6, take a break from the holiday shopping rush to enjoy a few laughs at the “Ha-Ha-Halidays Improv Show,” a production by the Drama Club at North Idaho College. The show is new to the Drama Club this year, resulting from a brainstorm session among department members that took place earlier this school year. “The improv team has been growing and practicing for this show once a week, and we are super excited to present our art to those who attend,” stated event leader Grant Benjamin. The hour-long show will be held from 6 to 7pm in the basement of NIC’s Student Union Building. While free to attend, Drama Club donations are encouraged and appreciated.

Saturday, December 7, will provide ample opportunity to get in the holiday spirit with local events scheduled throughout the day, beginning with the Boys & Girls Club of Kootenai County’s third annual Breakfast with Santa. During the pancake breakfast designed to welcome the entire family, there will be raffle prizes, crafts and the opportunity to have a photo taken with Santa, with photo magnets available for sale. Attendees will be invited to send their wishes to Santa from the letter writing station, and the Boys & Girls Club reports that Santa Claus will indeed read the letters and send a response to each child before Christmas. Full proceeds from the event will benefit the Christmas For Kids program, sponsoring families in need for the holiday season. The cost to attend will be $3 per child and $5 per adult. Families can enjoy the pancake breakfast from 9 to 11am. For more information, visit or

The Coeur d’Alene Downtown Association will partner with First Presbyterian and Trinity Lutheran for a Live “Neigh-tivity” scene at Sherman Square Park on December 7 from 1 to 4pm. The scene will feature a full-size manger, photo booth, and live animal petting stable with a camel, donkey, cow, goats and sheep. Evans Brothers Coffee Roasters will provide hot chocolate and coffee to keep attendees warm as they take in the experience. Following the “Neigh-tivity” portion of the event, Santa will ride in on the Fire Department’s vintage fire truck, decked out in lights, to take photos and visit with children until 6pm. Canned food donations to the Fire Department will be accepted during Santa’s visit. For more information, visit

Hayden will ignite its holiday glow with the Hayden Lights parade held on December 7 at 5pm, beginning at Hayden Avenue and proceeding along Government Way to Honeysuckle Avenue. The parade will conclude with the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony at McIntire Family Park and a visit from Santa Claus in the Council Chambers. Games, arts and crafts provided by event sponsor P1FCU will be available for children to enjoy while they wait to greet Santa. The experience will be tied together with holiday music from Hayden Meadows and Atlas elementary school choruses, to be enjoyed with free warm drinks and cookies. Donations for Toys for Tots will be accepted by the USMCR throughout the event. For more details, contact 208.209.1080. The Coeur d’Alene Makers began with a goal of hosting a single market to introduce the community to the small businesses of the area. Now, the Makers host markets every quarter, and on Sunday, December 8, they will provide the opportunity to treat yourself and your loved ones to handmade gifts at their Holiday Market. Hosted at the Coeur d’Alene Resort, the market is free to attend and will run from 10am to 4pm. It will feature local business owners who create jewelry, soaps, decorations and much more. Attendees will enjoy food samples and Christmas music as they support local businesses.

“Traditions of Christmas,” a musical in the style of Radio City Music Hall, will run from December 13 through 23 at the Kroc Center in Coeur d’Alene. The show will include delicately choreographed kick-line tap numbers, a heartfelt military tribute performance and a grand nativity conclusion, featuring a cast of 70 people, spectacular sets, live animals and over 40 costumes. For more information, visit or contact 208.292.8750. The Coeur d’Alene Resort is renowned for its spectacular holiday traditions, including its annual theatre production and famous Holiday Light Show cruises. This year’s holiday-themed theatre show is “Christmas Miracles,” a production by Ellen Travolta and directed by Troy Nickerson. Performances are Thursdays through Saturdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 5pm through December 22. Ticket information can be found at

The famous Coeur d’Alene Resort Holiday Light Show also returned after Thanksgiving. Praised by “Good Morning America” as one of the nation’s best holiday destinations, the Resort’s cruise boats dazzle guests every year with trips across Lake Coeur d’Alene to a breathtaking waterfront North Pole. Each cruise enjoys an impressive view of more than 1.5 million lights. The 40-minute cruises will board near the Resort Plaza Shops, running multiple nightly cruises through the first of the year. For more information, visit

Those seeking fitness in the new year can begin on day one with the annual Hangover Handicap Fun Run. Proceeds from the run will benefit local, private nonprofit organization Tesh, Inc., with the purpose of providing opportunities to people with disabilities of all ages. Since 1976, Tesh has served over 8,000 children and adults with disabilities and their families. Locals can start the year strong while supporting a great cause by joining the 5-mile run, beginning at 9:30am at 203 East Coeur d’Alene Lake Drive. To register, visit

On New Year’s Day, locals will also have the opportunity to start the year with a splash at the annual Polar Plunge on Sanders Beach. Locals can dive headfirst into 2020 by joining the infamous, crowd-drawing event in its 41st year. Participants have been known to arrive in outfits ranging from bikinis and board shorts to elaborate costumes and leave with the invigorating adrenaline rush only a winter swim could evoke. Check in with for more details.

There’s a reason Coeur d’Alene has been named a top destination for the holidays. With an array of opportunity to celebrate everything this season has to offer, it’s sure to be a spectacular December. Grab a loved one and your favorite cozy beverage, and join the community in making the most of the season.

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