If you’re seeking a way to brighten your mood this season, look no further than our popular holiday tradition! This year’s Festival of Trees will feature a winter wonderland of 50 elaboratively decorated trees representing individuals, families and organizations from around Indiana.
This year will feature a new theme — Life Is a Gift — that will be seen and felt from the 30-foot centerpiece tree to decorative features and signage throughout the building. Select Friday evenings will offer extended hours for those who wish to see the trees by night.
While the mood is festive, there’s also a friendly competition for fan favorite, and each guest will have the opportunity to vote. Visitors can also take part in scavenger hunts for The Elf on the Shelf or the Weihnachtzgurke (10 pickle ornaments hidden in trees throughout the building) — watch IHS’s social media channels for hints on the locations.
As guests wander through the building, they can stop in the Cole Porter Room for a holiday singalong and enjoy a virtual story time with Santa. All exhibits will be open for guests, including the recently opened You Are There 1920: Celebrate Indianapolis!
Throughout Festival of Trees, the Stardust Terrace Café by Jonathan Byrd’s will offer extended hours and additional menu options, including holiday-inspired treats and tasty specialty beverages for both children and grown-ups.
The History Center is a Salvation Army Angel Tree location. Learn more here.
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday
Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday
*Select Fridays will have extended hours of 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Visit www.indianahistory.org for a detailed schedule.
Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day
Elf on a Shelf – Where is Hoosier Buddy, the History Center’s Elf on the Shelf, today? Check our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram pages for a clue. Tell our Welcome Center staff you found him for a prize.
Where’s the Weihnachtsgurke? – See if you can spot the 10 pickle ornaments we have hiding in different trees all over the building.
Holiday Sing-Along – Jump into the holiday spirit in the Cole Porter Room and sing along with traditional carols.
This year marks a first for the Festival of Trees with a new virtual experience that will allow you to enjoy the festivities from the warm comfort of your home or on any mobile device. You’ll be able to enter an animated website that will lead you to a digital winter wonderland — free of charge!
Thanks to 360-degree viewing technology, you will get to see all 50 elaborately decorated trees as they are displayed at the History Center. Zoom in to appreciate the fine details of these festive creations. You can compile your favorite trees in the “Favorites” section to help with the online voting process. Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list, as the winner will be announced via email in early 2021.
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