We're a holiday-loving team, y'all! Not only do we look forward, every year, to the biggest and best seasonal ice cream lineup (it's the last season of the year -- we HAVE to go big!) that includes all of our favorite holiday flavors, but we also look forward to our annual staff party. We go a little holiday crazy for the party because a) it's the holidays and b) with locations all around Austin & San Antonio, we don't have many, if any, opportunities to get together under the same roof. We've had an Ugly Holiday Sweater theme party, a Holiday Pajama party, and this year, we had a Holiday Hat party.
So, as you can imagine, we're a crew that takes full advantage of the local holiday festivities, both new traditions and old. In addition to seasonal ice cream eating (which you should definitely do!) and holiday parties, there are so many things to do at this time of the year to help us, and everyone in Austin and San Antonio, get in the holiday spirit. With Christmas just one week away, we highly recommend filling your week with all of them!
Austin Trail of Lights
"I love to walk the Trail of Lights and spin under the Zilker tree. The lights and the view of downtown are beautiful but that's not why it's my favorite. It's my favorite holiday activity in Austin because even with our city getting bigger by the day, this event still has that small city feel and brings all Austinites together to enjoy something that we can all be proud of."
- Anthony, Co-Owner and Chef
"It's probably on everyone's list, but [I love] the Trail of Lights!!!! We go every year with the same couple friends who have families with children. [The kids] used to all be in strollers and now they can walk the trail all by themselves. Hot chocolate, Christmas music, and tons of people. Is there anything better? Well.... it could snow!"
- Juliet, Office Manager
Holiday Lights on the Riverwalk
"In San Antonio, we have an annual lighting of the Riverwalk that kicks off with the annual Ford Holiday Parade along the San Antonio River. This starts the day after Thanksgiving and remains up until after the New Year. With over 122,000 lights strung all along the San Antonio River (and under!), no matter which part you trek, your experience is different. My favorite San Antonio thing to do during the holidays is grab some coffee and hot cocoa and walk along different parts of the river with my loved ones and pup. Throughout the month, there are also different free events happening all along the river that you can stop by and enjoy."
- Dani, Pearl Shop Manager
Blue Genie Art Bazaar
"The Blue Genie Bazaar is so festive and really gets me in the holiday spirit! I love seeing what the amazing artisans are up to and am happy to support Austin's local makers while shopping for gifts for my friends and family."
- Chad, Co-Owner
The Nutcracker at the Long Center
"I like to go to Ballet Austin and watch the Nutcracker with my daughter, Kai. It's a tradition that started when I was a kid with my mom. It's so fun to get dressed up (once a year... ha!) and go to the ballet."
- Casey, Burnet Shop Manager
Barton Springs Polar Bear Splash
"My absolute favorite Austin "thing" to do is the New Year's Polar Bear Splash at Barton Springs. We get up and go early as a family, bundled with lots of towels. Then we jump in together holding hands. Some years we can stay and swim for a long time, sometimes we can't get to the car fast enough! It's a great way to celebrate the excitement of the new year!"
- Jennie, Production Manager
Ice Skating on the Plaza at Whole Foods
"[My favorite thing is] ice skating on the Whole Foods roof! Not only can you grab a Lick pint in the freezer aisle, but you can also twirl around on the ultimate freezer aisle upstairs. We don't get a lot of true "wintery" fun in Austin so having an afternoon at the ice rink downtown gives me major winter wonderland vibes even if I don't need a sweater outside."
- Lynda, South Lamar Shop Manager
Spreading Holiday Cheer on the Hike & Bike Trail
"I like to run around Town Lake (Lady Bird Lake) and smile, talk, and/or wave to all of the Austinites. It's all about spreading the holiday cheer!! This time of year is tough for some people and I like to be there with my holiday cheer and an open ear for all."
- Casey, Burnet Shop Manager
Cedar Tree Decorating on Loop 360
"I encourage everyone to drive by the "Christmas tree" display on Loop 360 during the holidays. It's a uniquely Austin tradition in that complete strangers come together on this specific, yet seemingly random, stretch off the highway every year to create a colorful, festive, and very unofficial holiday display... and the City of Austin is totally OK with it! The wild cedar trees' tinsel and ornaments remain up, undisturbed, until eventually the same people come back to respectfully remove the colorful "litter" after the holidays. The display and the thought behind it never fail to make me smile!"
- Diana, Social Media Manager