Helen, GA Holiday Event Guide
The days are getting shorter and the fall leaves have shown their colors and fallen from the trees. Do you know what that means? It’s almost the most wonderful time of the year! While towns and cities across the globe celebrate Christmas, in Helen, GA it is a little more magical. The Bavarian village is covered head to toe in Christmas lights and holiday decorations plus every single weekend is filled with spirited events. Check out a couple and plan your visit today.
Each year the community of Helen comes together for a unique event called the Festival of Trees. Beautifully decorated trees and wreaths are displayed at Unicoi State Park where you can stroll through and bid on your favorites. Exploring this magical woodland park is wonderfully romantic and is something you can do at your own pace. On December 7th, the trees are awarded to the highest bidders and all of the proceeds go to United Way of White County.
Helen already has that magical Christmas feeling every day of the year, but on November 29th, the town turns into a full-blown Christmas Wonderland. Just after the sun sets, musical performances will precede to bring everyone into the holiday spirit before the lighting of the village at 6 pm. Hot cocoa will be sold by local merchants so grab a cup and your loved one to get into the holiday spirit this season.
Visit the Hardman Farm every weekend to learn about Victorian Christmas traditions at the iconic Mansion at West End. Docents dressed in their finest 1870’s outfits will lead you through the festive building while live Christmas music plays in the background. You can also visit with Santa, take a horse-drawn carriage down the Unicoi Turnpike, and vote for your favorite Victorian Christmas Tree.
Don’t fret if you haven’t found the perfect gifts for all of your friends and family. At the Mistletoe Market at the Helen Arts & Heritage Center, you can find unique, one-of-a-kind gifts that will delight your loved ones. This festive market boasts the most impressive collection of locally made art and fine crafts. Find intricate ornaments, handmade jewelry, home decor pieces, and much more.
Start off your New Year’s resolution a little early by signing up for the Helen Holiday Half Marathon on December 14th. This course leads you through 13.1 miles of the most gorgeous terrain of Unicoi State Park. Finishers are awarded a cozy beanie and a finishers pint glass to enjoy while you watch the Helen holiday lights parade.
The whole town is lit up with holiday lights, Christmas songs are on the radio, and every store has some sort of merry touch that brings the spirit of the holidays alive. The last touch is the annual Helen Christmas Parade to bring merriment to the downtown. Floats decorated with festive designs will meander through town while bands play your favorite holiday jingles. Keep an eye out for Mr. & Mrs. Claus who will be spreading cheer throughout the crowd.
After Christmas is over it is time to take down your decorations and get rid of your beloved Christmas tree. You could throw it away, or you could turn your old Christmas tree into a fun and memorable tradition at the North Georgia Zoo in Cleveland, GA. Keep the holiday spirit of giving alive by donating your tree to the zoo animals. Some animals love to munch on the branches while others like to use them as a back-scratching tool or tear them up for fun. Give your tree to a great cause and watch as these unique animals enjoy your Christmas Tree!
Get into the holiday spirit this year by attending one of these festive events right here in Georgia. You’ll have a blast sipping hot cocoa, visiting with holiday characters, and meandering around the village covered in Christmas decorations.
Planning a holiday getaway to Helen, GA? Book a stay at Sylvan Valley Lodge & Cellars, a winery bed & breakfast located along the Unicoi Wine Trail just minutes from Helen’s many restaurants, shops, and attractions.