Growing up in New Orleans, one of my absolute favorite holiday traditions was going to Celebration in the Oaks with my grandmother. We often went several times throughout the season, sometimes just to drive through and see the lights and other times to actually get out and walk around. I loved getting hot chocolate and looking at all of the decorated Christmas trees while listening to holiday music. Without a doubt, it was one of the holiday traditions that I was the most excited to start with our own children.
Last year, even though Thatcher was only about 10 months old, we took him to Celebration in the Oaks a few days before Christmas. We ordered tickets online and went right when it opened, which I highly recommend with little ones. We didn’t have to wait too long, and we probably spent about 1-2 hours just walking around looking at the lights and enjoying the holiday spirit. Despite the fact that we went to countless holiday parties and bounced from house to house and event to event during December, the night we spent at Celebration in the Oaks really stands out to me as memorable. There’s just something so timeless and classic about enjoying holiday lights under the oak trees. We didn’t attempt any rides (although I really want to try the train this year given his obsession with “choo choos”), but we did sit in the carousel and just watch for a while.
If you want to check it out with your little ones ahead of time and avoid the crowds, they also offer a Children’s Preview Party on Sunday, November 18 from 5:00 – 8:00pm. For $30 a person (children under 2 are free; members of City Park pay $25), there is unlimited food, unlimited amusement rides (including the train) and lots of fun activities. Or, if you want a fun date night in November, consider the Adult Preview Party which features an open bar, food from 50 restaurants and entertainment.
Celebration in the Oaks at City Park
When: Friday, November 23 – Thursday, January 1 (only open the weekend of November 23; open nightly starting on November 30)
Admission: $7/person (children under 3 are free!)
Why: Get in the holiday spirit and enjoy lots of fun for the entire family, including amusement park rides
While the New Orleans Moms Blog team received admission tickets to Celebration in the Oaks, all opinions expressed here are my own; I have loved Celebration in the Oaks since I was a little girl and can’t wait to go again this year!