Here in the Motor City, we embrace the changing of the seasons as a time for good fun, great food and excellent outdoor activities – regardless of the cold. Motown is also home to one of the nation’s oldest Thanksgiving Day parades, America’s Thanksgiving Parade, right through the heart of downtown Detroit. For nearly a century, Detroit has been synonymous with Thanksgiving, and old and young alike will find plenty to due if they’re lucky enough to be visiting metro Detroit this holiday season.

America’s Thanksgiving Parade
Woodward Ave.
Detroit, MI 48122
(313) 923-7400

Date: Nov. 24, 2016 at 8:45 a.m.

Since 1924, Detroit has hosted America’s Thanksgiving Parade, one of the country’s largest holiday parades, rivaled only by the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade held in New York City (also started in 1924). The national spotlight will fall upon these two cities on Thanksgiving morning and visitors and residents alike are welcome to crowd the Cass Corridor and downtown Woodward districts in Detroit to get a great seat to see the massive floats and numerous celebrities who will be on hand each year to celebrate the holiday. Attendance is always free and the parade will make its way from Midtown all the way to downtown Detroit. This year will bring the addition of a live broadcast of the parade on WOMC!

Runners make their way through Midtown and downtown Detroit during the Turkey Trot. (Credit, Michael Ferro)

Strategic Staffing Solutions’ Turkey Trot
Woodward Ave.
Detroit, MI 48122
(313) 923-7400

Date: Nov. 24, 2013 at 7:30 a.m.

Well-seasoned runners and those looking to work off some calories before Thanksgiving dinner will find a great experience waiting for them at the annual Turkey Trot in Detroit on November 24th. This race is held throughout the downtown area and through beautiful Campus Martius Park, which adds a stunning element to the race itself. Medals are awarded to each of the first 1,500 finishers. As usual, there will be three events, including a 10K, 5K and one-mile race, also appropriately known as the “Turkey Trot, Stuffing Strut and Mashed Potato Mile.”

Register for it HERE.

Children’s Hospital Of Michigan Festival of Trees
Ford Community & Performing Arts Center
15801 Michigan Ave
Dearborn, MI 48126

Date: Friday November 25, 2016 10:00 am to 8:00 pm
Saturday: November 26, 2016 10:00 am to 8:00 pm
Sunday: November 27, 2016 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Who loves decorated Christmas trees? You do! Throw in a gift shop, Santa visit, kids’ activities, and more, and you’ve got the festival of trees. It’s a Christmastime tradition you don’t want to miss.

Related:  The Perfect Long Weekend In Detroit

Residents and visitors alike enjoy the idyllic downtown setting of Detroit’s ice rink in Campus Martius Park. (Credit, Michael Ferro)

Ice Rink at Campus Martius
800 Woodward Ave.
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 963-9393

Each Thanksgiving weekend, the gorgeous ice skating rink that lies dead center in the middle of Campus Martius Park comes alive. After folks have had the time to “oo” and “ah” at the magnificent Christmas tree display, the ice rink is open for anyone who wishes to skate in the middle of a downtown paradise. With the skyscrapers looming tall beside you, and the cold weather finally settling in, nothing can quite top some time upon the ice. Adults who wish to skate will cost $8 and children will cost $7. Hours vary each day of the week, with later hours to midnight on weekends. Please see the rink’s website for more details.

Detroit Lions Thanksgiving Game at Ford Field
2000 Brush St.
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 262-2000

Date: Nov. 24, 2016

Some things were just made to go together, like football and Thanksgiving. Since 1934, Detroiters and folks from around the world have watched as the Detroit Lions have hosted the country’s top football game for well over half a century. Many Motown families plan their entire Thanksgiving holiday around the mid-day Lions kickoff, including tailgating events, outdoor cookouts and much more. Downtown establishments are alive and abuzz with activity, no matter what the weather is like. Attending a Lions Thanksgiving home game is a rite of passage for any resident and an entirely new and exciting experience for visitors as well. This year, the Lions will square off against the Minnesota Vikings at 12:30 p.m. The game will air on CBS 62.

Wayne County Lightfest

7651 Merriman Road
Westland, MI
The Wayne County Lighfest will be open Thursday, Nov. 17 – Dec. 31, 2016 for families to enjoy! The entrance for the Lightfest is on Merriman Road between Ann Arbor Trail and Warren Avenue in Westland.As the Midwest’s largest and longest drive-through light show, Lightfest features more than 47 giant animated holiday themed displays. The entire light show has been converted to environmentally beneficial LED lights.

Lightfest is open Monday – Thursday; 7:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m., Friday – Sunday; 6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. through December 31.

There is a $5 fee per vehicle.

Remember to visit Santa’s Workshop at Warrendale Park at the end of the Lightfest drive. Santa will be there starting November 18 until December 23, concurrent with the Lightfest hours of operation. Don’t forget to bring your letters to Santa! Outside of Santa’s workshop there will be a giant mailbox where kids of all ages can drop off their letters to Santa.

Holly Dickens Festival

If you’re looking to get out of town for a little breather after the big day of turkey consumption, head on down to Holly for the longest running Dickens festival in the United States.

For 2016, The festival will span THREE weekends, beginning with a lighted parade at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25. The parade will be followed immediately with the arrival of Santa Claus in Historic Downtown Holly for the traditional Tree Lighting Ceremony.

Watch here for detailed entertainment, event, and contest schedule,
or follow them on Facebook for up-to-the-minute details!