Tantalizing treats, stocking stuffer shopping, holiday happenings and more are all occurring in Hamilton County this season! Don't miss these fun traditions that will bring cheer to children from one to ninety-two. Choose from these suggestions or create your own new tradition by choosing another event from our online calendar.  Also read on for a chance to WIN a fun holiday experience here in Hamilton County!

1. Stop by the Fishers Train Station for a ride on the Polar Bear Express Train! Rides run on Fridays and Saturdays from November 30 - December 15. Children of all ages will enjoy a Christmas story followed by a one-hour train ride with a visit from Santa Clause himself. Buy your tickets in advance to secure your visit to the North Pole! 

2. Shop ‘til you drop and mark off your holiday shopping lists at Hamilton County's open-air malls, Hamilton Town Center and Clay Terrace. Many local boutiques are also great shopping destinations, like my personal favorite, the house-turned-store Gallery 116 where you can be sure to find unique items. 

3. Take advantage of the new and exciting Center for the Performing Arts with holiday shows like Indiana Wind Symphony Presents: Home for the Holidays and Indianapolis Symphonic Choir Presents: Festival of Carols. Other artists featured are Sylvia McNair and Brenda Lee. Tickets to these performances will lift your holiday spirits and provide an up-close look at the beautiful interior of the Palladium! See the Center for the Performing Arts website for more shows and details.  

4. Visit Conner Prairie, starting November 29, for a stroll through a gingerbread village! Mouths will water and children will enjoy a play area and a holiday craft. Then, stick around for a 60-minute candlelight tour through Prairietown! All ages will enjoy visiting the Prairietown families and will even meet the German Pennsylvania Santa Clause! 

5. Check out the holiday plays like Carmel Repertory Theatre Presents Scrooge, The Musical! Show times run from December 7-23 and it will be a great holiday show. Also, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat will show at the Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre from December 14 - January 5. Another show to check out is The Westfield Playhouse Presents: Farndale Avenue Christmas Carol that has already opened.

6. Embrace the holidays with bright lights and a festive atmosphere at town tree-lighting events around Hamilton County! Come to Fishers Town Hall on November 29 for the holiday tree lighting, where family and friends will enjoy caroling with Sister Cities' Dickens Carolers and visits with Santa. And on November 30, stop by the Westfield lighting festival on North Union Street, which will include carriage rides!

7. Give into your sweet tooth and avoid tedious baking for holiday parties at one of many great cupcake shops. My favorites include The Flying Cupcake (the red velvet with chocolate chips is too good to miss) and Holy Cow, Cupcakes! (home of unique the maple bacon cupcake), which are both in Carmel. Flavors change at both of these stores daily so stop in, be surprised, and dig in! Also try cupcakes from Rascia's Creative Cakes, Gigi's Cupcake, and the newly relocated Sugarbean Cupcakes

8. Come to Noblesville's Christmas on the Square to ride in a horse-drawn sleigh and tell Santa what you want for Christmas! The sparkling lights of downtown and free hot chocolate will be sure to spread the holiday cheer. This First Friday event will be on December 7, from 5:30 to 8:00 and is perfect for the whole family. 

9. Enjoy the holiday edition of the monthly Second Saturday Gallery Walk in the Carmel Arts and Design District on December 8. There will be merchant events and activities, entertainment, and shopping, all with a festive theme! While you're in the district, don't miss the Gingerbread Scavenger Hunt and bring your letter to drop in Santa's Mailbox!

10. Pile the family in the car and head to Stonycreek Farm for the annual Country Christmas event. Take a hayride to the field and pick your perfect Christmas tree and cut it down yourself! Also browse the other greenery offerings and take a stroll through the gift shop.

Want to WIN some holiday cheer from us?
What's you're favorite holiday or winter tradition? Answer in the comments section below for a chance to win 6 tickets to Westfield Playhouse's production of Farndale Avenue Christmas Carol! We'll pick 1 luck winner to enjoy this new twist on the classic Christmas tale with their family.

The contest is now CLOSED, congratulations to the winner Fabrice Decaudin!