Tis the Season

Top 10 ways NorthPark Center gets Dallas in the holiday spirit

Holiday decoratins at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Santa at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Trains at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
SPCA at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Camp Gingerbread at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Menorah lighting at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Scrooge at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Salvation Army tree at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Turtle Creek Chorale at NorthPark
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center
Christmas treats at NorthPark Center
Photo courtesy of NorthPark Center

NorthPark Center is a must-shop for gifts, but this Dallas institution also knows how to get the city in the holiday spirit. Whether you want to do something good for someone else, listen to some local holiday entertainment or take your kids to visit Santa Claus, NorthPark makes it happen.

Visits and Portraits With Santa Claus
Through December 24
Level one in Macy’s Court

All little boys and girls are invited to share their holiday wish lists with Santa Claus. We like that you can take your own photos, but you can also purchase professional pictures by Marc Robins Photography.

Tickets are available starting at 9 am, Monday-Saturday, and 10 am on Sunday.

Santa is also telling classic holiday tales. During storytime, kids can learn how reindeers fly or what elves do for fun. Storytelling takes place Monday-Saturday at 10:30 am and Sunday at noon. 

Trains at NorthPark
Through January 5, 2014
Level two

The beloved Trains at NorthPark celebrates its 26th anniversary this holiday season with the most elaborate miniature toy trains exhibit in Texas,. We're talking 1,600 feet of track on a journey across America. Cityscapes include Dallas, New York City, New England, Grand Canyon, Route 66, San Francisco and Albuquerque.

More than 80,000 people visit the Trains at NorthPark each season to benefit the Ronald McDonald House of Dallas.

SPCA of Texas Home for the Holidays Pet Adoption
Through December 23
Level one between Macy’s and Dillard’s

Spread the love this holiday season by giving an animal a forever home. For the last 23 years, more than 6,000 pets and their loving new families have come together at this adoption event.

Assistance is provided at select times to help families choose the right animals for their lifestyles. Adoption fees include most shots and vaccinations.

Camp Gingerbread
December 7-8
Level one near Macy’s

Who doesn't love gingerbread cookies this time of year? Folks are invited to show off their creativity by decorating gingerbread cookies with frosting, nuts, dried fruit, candies and sprinkles.

These cookies also help a good cause. Proceeds from each cookie purchased for $10 benefit Shared Housing, a nonprofit organization that facilitates affordable housing options for those in need.

Menorah Lighting
December 1, 5:30 pm
Level one near Nordstrom

NorthPark Center recognizes the holiday traditions of our diverse city. Rabbi Dubrawsky from the Chabad of Dallas celebrates Hanukkah with the lighting of the menorah in the Festival of Lights.

Enjoy complimentary refreshments after the lights have been kindled.

Scrooge Puppet Theatre
Through December 24
Level one in EastCourt near Dillard’s

You know that Scrooge would never let Santa have all of the fun. Charles Dickens’ Scrooge comes to life through puppets courtesy of John Hardman of Le Theatre de Marionette, who invites children of all ages to watch Scrooge creep out from his cottage at the bottom of every hour.

Salvation Army Angel Tree
Through December 9
Level one near Macy’s

Giving back is something Dallasites take very seriously. It is no surprise that choosing an angel from the Salvation Army Angel Tree is at the top of our holiday to-do lists.

By picking an angel you get to provide gifts for children, seniors and disabled adults in need. It's an easy way to make a big difference.

Drop off your gift by December 9, and the Salvation Army will make your delivery in time for Christmas. NorthPark Angel Tree patrons have contributed more than $3 million in donated Christmas gifts to more than 39,000 North Texans over the past five years.

Sights and Sounds of the Season Performances
December 3-24
Level one at Dillard’s Court
NorthCourt, between Nordstrom and Macy’s

NorthPark doesn't play around when it comes to entertainment. We aren't talking about a concert or two; 150 groups are taking the stage to celebrate the holidays this year.

Performances include Metropolitan Winds, Dallas Ballet Company, Texas Ballet Theater School, Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing & Visual Arts' Repertory Dance I & II, Dallas Black Dance Theatre Academy, Collin County Ballet Theatre, Plano Children's Theatre, Dallas Asian American Youth Orchestras, and Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts, among many others. 

See the complete schedule.

Treats of Christmas
December 21, 10 am-7 pm
Level one near Macy’ and level two between Nordstrom and Macy’s

During the ultimate holiday bake sale, dozens of chefs from area restaurants and catering companies present an assortment of gourmet cakes, sweets, pies and cookies available for purchase.

Proceeds benefit the North Texas Food Bank's Cooking Matters, an organization that empowers more than 15,000 families each year with the skills, knowledge and confidence to prepare healthy and affordable meals.

SPCA of Texas Home for the Holidays Custom Dog Houses
Through December 8
Between Dillard’s and Macy’s

SPCA of Texas joins forces with the greater Dallas chapter of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry for the second annual custom dog houses campaign.

Each dog house will be raffled off, and the most popular will be crowned "Top Dog." Raffle tickets are $5 each or five for $20, and proceeds benefit SPCA of Texas.