A Carillon Christmas

A Carillon Christmas

Days left of A Carillon Christmas


Event Details
November 26 – December 30, 2024*
Sunday – Thursday: 5:00pm – 9:00pm
Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm – 10:00pm

at Carillon Historical Park

* Closed Thanksgiving Day,
Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day

$14 per adult (ages 18-59)
$12 per senior (ages 60+)
$10 per child (ages 3-17)
Free to children 2 and under
FREE to Dayton History Members!

Purchase Tickets Become a Member

Dayton’s newest holiday tradition!

Join us for A Carillon Christmas to see Carillon Historical Park’s 65-acre campus transformed into a winter wonderland of sparkle, magic, and holiday cheer!


The Carillon Tree of Light
Santa Claus
The Carillon Park Railroad
Gem City Letterpress
Letters to Santa
Deeds Carillon Christmas Concerts
Carillon Christmas Café
Drinks at Culp’s Café
Roundhouse Café in the Transportation Center
The Tailor of Gloucester Puppet Show
Model Train Displays
Midnight Express Miniature Train Rides
Museum Store Shopping
Walk through our beautiful campus, filled with thousands of lights
Morris and Hetzel Bakery
Gristmill Christmas Village and Peppermint Mill
Carillon Brewing Co.
… and more!

Thank you to our partners and sponsors!

Holiday Activities

Holiday Activities

Holiday Activities

Join us for these special programs and watch as Carillon Park comes alive with your favorite holiday traditions! All locations have been marked with a holiday icon on your map and they are open between 5:00pm and 9:00pm.

Visit with Santa
Through Dec. 23rd
Did you know that Dayton was the toy manufacturing capital of the United States in the 1920s? Visit Santa in the Heritage Center, in front of the Dr. Richard and Dorothy Cummings Collection of Dayton-made toys. Bring your own camera to take a complimentary picture.

Letters to Santa
Write a letter to Santa in Newcom Tavern (Est. 1796), Dayton’s oldest standing structure. It contains the original Van Cleve cabinet which served as Dayton’s first post office.

Wright Brothers National Museum
John W. Berry, Sr. Wright Brothers National Museum, including Wright Cycle Company and Wright Hall, tells the world-changing story of the Wright brothers and showcases their original 1905 Wright Flyer III, the world’s first practical airplane and a National Historic Landmark. The Museum is a privately owned and operated unit of Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park.

Chestnuts & Gingerbread at Morris & Hetzel Bakery
Learn about historic hearth cooking with our costumed interpreters. Purchase a homemade gingerbread cookie and a cone of roasted chestnuts in the Morris & Hetzel Bakery.

A Visit From St. Nicholas
The Night Before Christmas
Enjoy a special presentation of this classic Christmas poem featuring hand-painted glass slides produced by NCR. These slides were accompanied by a special reading of A Visit From St. Nicholas during children’s Christmas programs NCR put on from 1916 until the early 1930s. A booklet featuring the poem and slides can be purchased in the Museum Store.

The Rike-Kumler Company
Toy Parade & Christmas Cartoons
Beginning in the 1920s through 1942, the Rike-Kumler Company held a Toy Parade on Thanksgiving Day to ring in the start of the Christmas season. Experience the spectacle through actual films of the parades taken in the 1930s and 1940s. You can also watch excerpts of popular Christmas cartoons from that time.

The Tailor of Gloucester, Puppet Show
Every half hour, starting at 5:30pm
Enjoy a Christmas-themed Puppet Show based on The Tailor of Gloucester (1903) by Beatrix Potter. This tale, from the author of Peter Rabbit, was published only a few months prior to December 17, 1903, when the Wright brothers achieved First Flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

Carousel of Dayton Innovation
Take a ride on our beautiful, one-of-a-kind carousel, built right here in Ohio in 2011. From planes to trains to automobiles and beyond, each hand-carved figure represents a unique aspect of Dayton’s colorful past. (Cost: $1 per person, per ride; any riders under 42” tall need to be accompanied by an adult)

Gem City Letterpress
Visit the nation’s only complete 1930s letterpress job shop operating in a museum! The equipment in this shop was typical during an era when Dayton was home to 77 printing companies.

Carillon Park Railroad
5:00pm to 9:00pm*
Ticketing Location: Dixon & Shafor Junction
Take a ride on a magical train through a winter wonderland of lights reminiscent of a trip to the North Pole.(Cost: $1 per person, per ride)
*Must be in line one hour before closing

The Midnight Express Train Rides
6:00pm to 9:00pm*
Ticketing Location: Transportation Center
Enjoy a narrated, mile-long ride on a replica of one of the first trains to arrive in Dayton. (Cost: $5 per person, per ride)
*Must be in line one hour before closing

Holiday Shopping
Whether you are looking for something Dayton-related or holiday themed, you’ve come to the right place for Christmas shopping! Visit our Museum Store locations in the Kettering Family Education Center and Gem City Letterpress to find the perfect gift!

Holiday Treats & Drinks
Enjoy a light meal, delicious snacks, holiday treats, beverages and more!
Seating is available throughout the park.

Locations: Carillon Christmas Café, Roundhouse Café, the Peppermint Mill, Culp’s Café, and Carillon Brewing Company.

Food and Drink

Food and Drink

Specialty Christmas concessions are available daily at different locations throughout Carillon Park during A Carillon Christmas, November 23rd through December 30th. Of course, the Carillon Brewing Co. is serving food every day from 11:00am to 9:00pm all year long!

Culp's Christmas Café

Carillon Christmas Café

Enjoy Hot Dogs, French fries, Pretzels, Ice Cream, S’mores, Hot Chocolate, & More! Counter service and outdoor seating available!
View Mobile Menu

Roundhouse Café

Roundhouse Café

Fresh Popcorn, Hot Cocoa, & More! Grab a snack and drink to take with you as you walk through the park.
View Mobile Menu

Morris House

Morris House

Gingerbread Cookies, Hot Cider, & Hot Fresh Chestnuts! All prepared before your eyes using historic cooking techniques!

Peppermint Mill

Peppermint Mill

Frosted Almonds, Pretzels, Mulled Wine, S’mores, Hot Cocoa, & More! Grab a snack and drink to take with you as you walk through the park.
View Mobile Menu

Culp's Café

Culp’s Café

Tuesday through Sunday: 10:00am – 2:00pm
5:00pm – 8:00pm (beverages and ice cream only)
To learn more about Culp’s Café and to see our full menu, please visit www.culpscafe.org.

Carillon Brewing Co.

Carillon Brewing Co.

Wednesday through Sunday: 11:00am – 9:00pm
Looking for a full-service dinner? Visit the Carillon Brewing Co., located right outside the main entrance to Carillon Historical Park. To learn more about our house brewed beers and to see our full menu, please visit www.carillonbrewingco.org.

Tips and FAQs

Tips and FAQs

Are masks required?

No, masks are not required at this time. However, we do encourage the use of masks indoors.

Where is the Kettering Family Education Center?

The Kettering Family Education Center is the gateway to Carillon Historical Park. The main entry is located underneath a portico. A flagpole is located directly in front of it.

What should I wear?

Carillon Historical Park is a 65-acre campus with indoor and outdoor exhibits. Keep an eye on the weather to plan your wardrobe!

Can I bring my own food and drinks?

During A Carillon Christmas, carry-in coolers, food items, or drinks are not permitted. We will have a variety of holiday treats available at our vending stations or you can dine at the Carillon Brewing Co.!

Can I come to the Park before 5:00pm?

Yes! Carillon Historical Park will remain open for our regular day-time hours beginning at 9:30am Monday through Saturday and 12:00pm on Sunday. You are welcome to enjoy the whole day at the Park, including A Carillon Christmas, until 9pm Sunday through Thursday and 10pm on Friday and Saturday. You will not need to leave and re-enter the park due to A Carillon Christmas.

Admission prices for A Carillon Christmas are the same as our regular admission.

Where can I park? How much does it cost?

FREE parking is available on the Carillon Historical Park campus.

When do lights and holiday programming start?

All A Carillon Christmas programming will begin at 5:00pm.

Are pets allowed?

Pets are not allowed at Carillon Historical Park. If you have a service animal, please make sure they are wearing proper identification.

Are wheelchairs or electric scooters available?

A small number of wheelchairs are available to guests to check out from our admission desk. We do not offer electric scooters.

Which night(s) have the most activities?

All programs will remain consistent throughout the entire month. You will be able to participate in the same holiday activities every day of the week.

Do you take credit and debit cards?

Several of our food and activity locations require cash. There is an ATM located in the lobby of the Kettering Family Education Center, but it is advised that you bring some cash for food and activity purchases. We do accept credit/debit cards in the Museum Store for the purchase of admissions, memberships, and all store merchandise, and at Carillon Christmas Café for food purchases.