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Victorian Sleighbell Parade & Old Christmas Weekend

December 5, 2019 - December 8, 2019

Step back in time as you take part in one of Michigan’s most unique holiday celebrations.  An entire weekend of excitement including the Victorian Sleighbell Parade with horse drawn entries, bagpipers, reindeer meet and greet and carolers elegantly dressed in Victorian style attire. The highlights of the parade are the draft horses pulling a 30 foot Christmas tree down River Street followed by a beautiful display of luminaries, caroling, and the lighting of the tree. The entire Old Christmas Weekend is filled with lovely events including Festival of Trees, The Nutcracker Ballet at the Ramsdell Regional Center for the Arts, and guided tours of the historic 1894 Lumber Baron Mansion, which now houses the Dempsey Manor Bed and Breakfast Inn and Victorian Tea Room. Manistee is a wonderful place to pick up gifts for everyone on your list, catch a show at the recently renovated Vogue Theatre or simply enjoy the magical experience of the beautifully decorated historic Downtown.

Schedule of Events

Friday, December 6, 2019

Downtown Soup Cook-off: 4:30-6:30pm, Downtown Manistee (Locations: Kellie’s Hallmark, Redeemed Furniture, Douglas Valley, Moving Spirits, The Ideal Kitchen, Glenwood Market, North Channel Brewing, TJ’s Pub, Snyder’s Shoes, Wahr Hardware, Farmer’s Insurance)

Soup Cook-off Results: Douglas Valley, 431 River Street, Awards at 7 pm

Hope of Christmas Concert: 7pm – Faith Covenant Church: 475 Eighth Street (no charge)

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Sleighbell Craft Show and Bake Sale: 9am-4pm, Manistee High School, 525 12th Street

Jingle Bell Jog 5K Run/Walk: 10am , Kennedy Elementary, 550 Maple Street ($18 prior to Nov 29th, $23 on race day)

Carriage Rides Down River Street: Noon – 3:15pm (Carriage rides end promptly at 3:30pm)

Santa’s Headquarters: 1-3:45pm, Manistee Marina, 460 River Street

Pony Rides: 2-4pm, in front of Manistee Marina, 460 River Street (150lbs weight limit)

Jingle Mingle: 4:30-7:30pm, Ramsdell Inn 399 River Street (Watch the parade from a spectacular view while enjoying live music, all you can eat appetizers and three drink tickets, $50 RSVP 231-398-7901 advance ticket purchase required)

Roasted Chestnuts: 4:30-7:30pm, Downtown Manistee on River Street

Victorian Sleighbell Parade: 5:30pm, Downtown Manistee on River Street (Experience one of Michigan’s most memorable holiday traditions.  This authentic parade features horse drawn carriages, turn of the century characters, 30 foot Christmas tree pulled upright by a beautiful horse team, elf on stilts, high school marching bands, bagpipers, MaxwellTown Brass band, ponies and alpacas.  The parade concludes in downtown’s west end near the fountain with community caroling and lighting of the tree.) 

Sleighbell Fireworks – After the Victorian Sleighbell Parade and Lighting of the Tree

Christmas Tea at the Buckley House: 2 – 4 pm, 450 Cedar Street (Enjoy a lavish Christmas tea in the third-floor ballroom of one of Manistee’s premier Victorian homes.  Three full courses will be served along with a complete tour of the home. Reservations required by Wednesday, December 4, 231 690-2743 $35.00/person)

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Traditional Swedish Brunch & Worship Service: 10am Service, 11am Brunch, Portage Lake Bible Camp, 4158 Camp Delight Road ($10 Adults, $5 five-twelve years, free for 4 and under.  RSVP 231-889-5911)

Santa’s Headquarters: 1-3pm, Manistee Marina, 460 River Street


December 5, 2019
December 8, 2019
Event Category:


Manistee DDA
(231) 398-3262


Manistee, MI 49660 United States + Google Map