Things to Do in December That Won’t Break the Bank

epoquegolden on December 11, 2017

Master Your Turns on the Ice | Anytime in December

Lace up your skates and venture out onto the ice at the Downtown Denver Rink at Skyline Park, which will be open every day in December, including Christmas Day. Keep an eye out for special events (including live music and a broomball challenge) at the rink, which will remain open until mid-February. If you bring your own skates, you can skate for free—but don’t worry, cheap rentals are available for those who don’t own a pair. Free


Explore a Traditional German Christmas Market | Dec 1-23

From tasting authentic food and drink to finding a unique Christmas gift or souvenir, the Denver Christkindl Market has everything you need to celebrate the holiday season. Modeled after traditional Christmas markets held in Germany and across Europe since the 14th century, the market features a variety of local craft vendors (selling everything from handmade toys to Christmas decorations to delicious German treats) along with live music, dancing, and other entertainment. Free


Walk Among the Animals (and the Lights) | Anytime in December

Take a stroll through the Denver Zoo after dark and you’ll see more than 150 glowing, animated animal sculptures peeking out from behind the trees and lining the walkways throughout December. Stretching across more than 60 acres, Zoo Lights will feature nightly entertainment, including meet-and-greets with Santa Claus, caroling train elves, and animal encounters. $7-$17


Check out a Holiday Arts Festival | Dec 7-23

If you’re looking for some smaller, more affordable artwork for gift-giving season, check out Art Gym Denver’s Holiday Fine Arts Festival, which will feature a variety of artwork from local painters, sculptors, printmakers, and illustrators, as well as digital, performing, and culinary artists (all members of Art Gym). The festival will open with a reception December 7, featuring free tastings from the culinary artists and meet-and-greets with some of the members. Free


Knock Out Your Holiday Shopping | Dec 16-17

If you’re running a bit late on shopping for gifts, don’t fret: Backyard on Blake is holding a Holiday Shopping Weekend in mid-December to help get you back on track. Once you’ve found the perfect gifts, take a break from exploring Backyard’s numerous shops and restaurants to share hot chocolate and marshmallows over a blazing bonfire. Free


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