Band of Gold

The Hendersonville Band of Gold was one of several school and civic groups that participated in the 2018 Hendersonville Christmas Parade. RICK MURRAY

It may be less than four weeks this year between Thanksgiving and Christmas, but that doesn’t mean there’s a shortage of things to do in Hendersonville during the holidays.  

Many of the events planned between Thanksgiving and Christmas fall under the HolidayFest umbrella – a slate of festivities benefitting local charities.  

HolidayFest founder Lynda Evjen says there are more events planned than ever for those looking to spread a little holiday cheer.

New this year during the holidays is a lighted drive-thru display throughout Drake’s Creek Park sponsored by the Hendersonville Parks Department and Ulitmate Party. 

Here are some other holiday highlights:

Saturday, Nov. 30 - Breakfast with Santa. There are two seatings for this popular event held each year at Bluegrass Country Club. Tickets can be purchased for an 8:30 a.m. seating or an 11 a.m. breakfast benefitting the non-profit Bows and Ballcaps. Tickets start at $5.50 to $19.50 and can be bought at

Sunday, Dec. 1 - The festivities surrounding the city’s annual tree lighting ceremony begin at 2 p.m. at Memorial Park. The Canine Cutie Pageant benefitting the Hendersonville VFW Post 9851 begins at 2 p.m. There will be bounce houses, food trucks and entertainment that includes headliner Irlene Mandrell as well as carriage rides and a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus at 4:45 p.m. The tree lighting will take place at 5:30 p.m. To register your pooch for the contest, go to

Sunday, Dec.1 - Sunday, Dec. 15 New this year is the Festival of Lights sponsored by Ultimate Party and the Hendersonville Parks Department. Enjoy a lighted display throughout Drake’s Creek Park each evening from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. There will be hayrides on Dec. 5 and 15, and carriage rides on Dec. 6 and 12 for $5. 

Wednesday, Dec. 4 - An auction of gingerbread house contest winners will be held to benefit Habitat for Humanity at Bluegrass Country Club at 2 p.m. Nov. 30 is the deadline to enter the contest. Applications can be found at Professional and amateur bakers are invited to create gingerbread houses (or churches, historic sites, etc.) that represent the holidays.

Saturday, Dec. 7 - Enjoy a Christmas Home Tour of Sumner County presented by the Women’s Council of Realtors from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Proceeds from the event benefit Habitat for Humanity, Grace Place and the Women’s Council of Realtors Sumner County. Tickets are $12.50 and can be bought at the Sumner County Visitors Center.

Saturday, Dec. 7 - Often referred to as THE social event of the season, the annual St. Nicholas Ball benefitting the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Middle Tennessee begins at 6 p.m. at Bluegrass Country Club. Enjoy a seated Christmas dinner, dancing to a live band and a silent auction. The proceeds from last year’s event provided two wishes for Middle Tennessee children. Evjen said this year’s goal is to provide wishes for four children.  This lively event is a favorite and offers an evening of music, fun, and celebration all to support a great cause, the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Saturday, Dec. 7 - Experience what the holidays were like in the 18th century at Historic Rock Castle’s Holiday Open House. Tour the 1784 home, listen to Christmas carols by the Hendersonville High School Select Choir and enjoy refreshments from 3 to 6 p.m.

Sunday, Dec. 8 - The theme of this year’s annual Christmas Parade presented by Kimbro Air is “50 years of fun.” Parade grand marshals are actress Charlene Tilton (“Dallas”) and her daughter Cherish Lee. The parade begins at 2:30 p.m. at Cherokee and Gallatin roads. 

Saturday, Dec. 14 - The festivities surrounding this year’s annual “Deck the Hulls” Boat Parade begin at 5:30 p.m. at Mallard Point Park on Sanders Ferry Road with food vendors and entertainment. Lighted boats will travel along Drake’s Creek to Sanders Ferry Park and back.

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