Houston’s 35 best experiences to add to your November bucket list

Looking for something to do? Hop aboard the Polar Express, ride down an ice slide at Moody Gardens, or spend madly at a holiday market

70th Annual H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade Parade with Grand Marshall Jim McIngvale in downtown Houston, Thursday, November 28, 2019. (Photo by Donna Carson) (DONNA CARSON, Donna Carson)

Houston, the wait is almost over.

The holiday season is returning in full force and soon, you can relive your favorite festive traditions -- mind-bogglingly massive holiday markets, dizzyingly dazzling light displays, electrifying stage spectaculars, and more.

Read on for a smorgasbord of seasonal offerings and holiday happenings scheduled in the month ahead.

  1. View incredible quilts at the International Quilt Festival (Nov. 1-5). 🧵
  2. Join Ryder and the PAW Patrol pups for an action-packed evening of family-friendly fun at “PAW Patrol Live: Heroes Unite” (Nov. 2-5). 🐶
  3. Rev your engine during the Lone Star Motorcycle Rally in Galveston (Nov. 2-5). 🏍️
  4. Remember and honor the dearly departed at one of these Día de los Muertos events (Through Nov. 4). 💀
  5. Celebrate Houston’s AAPI communities at Asia Society Texas’ annual Night Market (Nov. 3). 🥡
  6. Drive down a twinkly trail of festive displays synced and choreographed to holiday music at The Light Park (Nov. 3-Jan. 1). 🎄
  7. Light a lantern at the Water Lantern Festival in Spring (Nov. 4). 🏮
  8. Tour five historic Houston homes on Preservation Houston’s Good Brick Tour (Nov. 4-5). 🏡
  9. Relive the magic of “Raiders of the Lost Ark” on the giant screen at Jones Hall while enjoying John Williams’s iconic soundtrack performed live by the full Houston Symphony (Nov. 4-5). 🎶
  10. Score sweet merch at Collect-A-Con, a trading card, anime, and pop culture convention (Nov. 4-5). 🦸🏽‍♀️
  11. See fantastical figures inspired by the folk-art tradition of alebrijes at a festival thrown by The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (Nov. 5). 🖼️
  12. Go medieval at the Texas Renaissance Festival (Through Nov. 26). 🍗
  13. Don spirited holiday garb before embarking on a festive shopping spree at one of these holiday craft markets. 🛍️
  14. Hop aboard the Polar Express for a yuletide train ride (Nov. 10-Dec. 23). 🚂
  15. Twirl around the ice rink at Discovery Green (Nov. 10 - Jan. 28). ⛸️
  16. Take a road trip to College Station to experience the oh-so-merry spectacle that is Santa’s Wonderland (Nov.10-Dec. 30). 🎅🏽
  17. Celebrate Diwali at the Festival of Lights (Nov. 10). ✨
  18. Celebrate our nation’s servicemen and veterans at Houston’s annual American Heroes Parade (Nov. 11). 🪖
  19. Sample wine on the sea at Kemah Boardwalk’s Wine Fest (Nov. 11). 🍷
  20. Join Elsa on her quest to protect Arendelle during Disney’s spectacle on ice, “Find Your Hero” (Nov. 9-12). ⛸️
  21. Dress in your steampunk best to celebrate Miller Outdoor Theatre’s centennial (Nov. 11). 🥳
  22. Laugh yourself silly during a night of stand up with comedian Ali Wong (Nov. 12). 🎤
  23. Immerse yourself in the magic of Zoo Lights sans children at a sip-and-stroll wine tasting event (Nov. 16). 🍷
  24. Enjoy wild holiday lights, merry and bright, at Zoo Lights (Nov. 17-Jan. 7). 🐘
  25. Immerse Yourself in a wonderland of holiday lights at the Magical Winter Lights Festival in Katy (Nov. 17-Jan 7). ❄️
  26. See a large menagerie of lighted sculptures twinkling in the Houston Botanic Garden at its “Radiant Nature” outdoor exhibit (Nov. 17-Feb. 25). 🌻
  27. See dazzling light displays at Constellation Field during Sugar Land’s annual holiday lights extravaganza (Nov. 17-Jan. 1). ⚾
  28. Confront the Ghost of Christmas Past at the Alley Theatre during its annual production of “A Christmas Carol” (Nov. 17-Dec. 30). 👻
  29. Ride down an ice slide at Moody Gardens’ ice sculpture experience, Ice Land: Rainforest Holiday (Nov. 18-Jan.6). 🧊
  30. Support local creatives and score stunning works of art at Zine Fest Houston (Nov. 18). 🎨
  31. See Kehinde Wiley’s new, monumental body of work at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (Nov. 19 -June. 19). 🖼️
  32. Catch a glimpse of the enormous balloons, marching bands, and, of course, Santa Claus at Houston’s annual Thanksgiving Day Parade (Nov. 23). 🦃
  33. Step back in time while celebrating fall at the George Ranch Historical Park’s Fall Festival (Nov. 24). 🍂
  34. Journey through the glittering Land of Snow to the bright and joyful Kingdom of Sweets with Clara, the Nutcracker Prince, and the Houston Ballet (Nov. 24-Dec. 27). 🩰
  35. Cut down your own Christmas tree at one of these Houston-area tree farms. 🎄

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About the Author:

Briana Zamora-Nipper joined the KPRC 2 digital team in 2019. When she’s not hard at work in the KPRC 2 newsroom, you can find Bri drinking away her hard earned wages at JuiceLand, running around Hermann Park, listening to crime podcasts or ransacking the magazine stand at Barnes & Noble.