12 Fabulous and Fun Things to do in St. Louis in December 2023

Last updated on December 10th, 2023 at 03:34 am.

2023 is coming to an end but the St. Louis area still has tons of events during the month of December! Some of our favorite things to do in St. Louis in December involve the dozens of holiday and New Years’ events! See amazing light displays, find unique gifts, and enjoy special holiday-themed cocktails.

The holidays are not the only thing to celebrate in St. Louis this December! Get excited to meet your favorite dinosaurs face-to-face, time travel back to the 1980s, and much more!

Fun Things to do in St. Louis in December (1)

Fun and Unique Events to Attend in St. Louis, MO in December 2023

Keep reading to see our list of favorite things to do in St. Louis today and throughout December! We also have lists for the best things to do in Kansas City in December and the most fun things to do throughout the state of Missouri in December.

Here are the best things to do in St. Louis in November 2023 (from a Missouri local).

The St. Louis Polar Express | November 17 – December 30, 2023

The St. Louis Polar Express is quickly becoming a favorite holiday tradition. If your kiddo loves trains and Santa Claus, this is a can’t-miss event! Enjoy hot chocolate and cookies, while listening to the Polar Express story as you and your kids take a ride to the North Pole to meet Santa.

Santa will give out the first gift of Christmas, then get ready to sing Christmas carols on the ride back! Ticket levels and train experiences vary but coach tickets start at $29.99.

Location: St. Louis Union Station; 1820 Market Street, St. Louis, Missouri 63103

Wild Lights Saint Louis Zoo | November 24 – through December 30, 2023

Wild Lights Saint Louis Zoo
Photo Credit: St. Louis Zoo

It is a St. Louis Christmas tradition, head over to the iconic St. Louis Zoo after dark to see if all lit up and decorated for the holidays! Wild Lights returns in winter 2023 and this year promises to be bigger than ever.

Presented annually by U.S. Bank, the Wild Lights event sees the zoo lit up with bright lights with fun and stunning themed decoration throughout the zoo. This event will also have yummy winter-themed treats and be sure to swing by Penguin & Puffin Coast and the Insectarium and say hi to the animals.


  • Nov. 24-26: Wild Lights
  • Nov. 29-30: Wild Lights
  • Dec. 1-3: Wild Lights
  • Dec. 7-10: Wild Lights
  • Dec. 13-23: Wild Lights
  • Dec. 26-30: Wild Lights

Location: St. Louis Zoo; One Government Drive, St. Louis, MO 63110

The 3rd Annual 12 Bars of Christmas Crawl | Dec 2, 2023

12 Bars of Christmas Crawl

Here is a fun Christmas-themed event just for the grown-ups. Dress up in your most festive seasonal gear and prepare for the 3rd Annual 12 Bars of Christmas Crawl.

This is an eight-hour event that comes with a 16 oz color-changing Santa stadium cup, a Christmas light-up necklace for the first 50 people who sign up, an event t-shirt with the purchase of a t-shirt ticket, a fun Santa hat, and great holiday drink specials. Tickets range from $12-$14.

Starting Point: Carson’s Sports Bar & Restaurant; 1712 South 9th Street, St. Louis, MO 63104

Holiday Pop-Up Shop | Dec 2 & 9, 2023

Holiday Pop-Up Shop

There will be no shortage of fun Christmas pop-up shops in December but the Holiday Pop-Up Shop 2023 at Laumeier Sculpture Park is one you can’t miss. Local, one-of-a-kind vendors will have booths set up throughout the visitor centers, along with food and vendor shop trucks in the parking lot.

Grab some amazing holiday gifts for your loved ones and then spend some time strolling through the park, enjoying the artwork, weather permitting. This amazing event is free!

Location: Laumeier Sculpture Park; 12580 Rott Rd, Sappington, MO 63127

Winter Celebrations | Dec 9, 2023

Join internationally renowned performer and teaching artist Bobby Norfolk, along with other dynamic and award-winning storytellers, for a winter celebration featuring tales from around the world.

Suitable for all ages, this free event will offer hands-on art activities, performances that celebrate the city’s cultural diversity, and a scavenger hunt for winter-themed artworks in the museum’s collection.

Location: Saint Louis Art Museum; 1 Fine Arts Dr, St Louis, Missouri 63110

Chanukah: Festival of Lights | Dec 10, 2023

Chanukah Festival of Lights

December in St. Louis is all-inclusive and the Chanukah Festival of Lights at the Missouri Botanical Gardens is a celebration everyone should experience. Spend the afternoon listening to music and dancing before the menorah lighting ceremony takes place. This event is free to experience with the purchase of an admission ticket to the gardens.

Location: Missouri Botanical Garden; 4344 Shaw Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63110

Trans-Siberian Orchestra – The Ghosts Of Christmas Eve | Dec 17, 2023

One of the biggest and most anticipated shows of the year returns to St. Louis on December 10th. The world-famous Trans-Siberian Orchestra brings it’s The Ghosts of Christmas Eve, to the Enterprise Center.

If you haven’t seen the Trans-Siberian Orchestra in person you have no idea what you are missing out on! This is more than an orchestra performance, it is a full light, display, story, and musical experience. Tickets start at $49.50.

Location: St. Louis Enterprise Center; 1401 Clark Ave, St. Louis, MO 63103

Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest | Dec 17

ugly Christmas sweater contest

Don your ugliest Christmas sweater and join the festivities for the first-ever 9 Mile ugly Christmas sweater contest. Prizes await the top three contestants.

An optional white elephant gift exchange invites everyone to participate. Please keep gifts under $10 and see a bartender upon arrival to join the fun.

With 40 draft options and seasonal cocktails, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Live music by Tony Hall will fill the canteen from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM.

Location: 9 Mile Garden, 9375 Gravois Rd, Affton, MO 63123

Kwanzaa: Festival of the First Fruits | Dec 27, 2023


Return to the Missouri Botanical Gardens for their Kwanzaa Festival of the First Fruits. The holiday season is far from over, pop back over to the gardens for a one-of-a-kind Kwanzaa celebration.

This celebration will feature storytelling, crafts, jewelry displays, musical performances, and African drumming. This event is free to attend with the purchase of a garden admission ticket.

Location: Missouri Botanical Garden; 4344 Shaw Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63110

Grants Farm Holiday Lights Drive-Through & Walk-Through


Grants Farm Holiday Lights
Photo Credit: Grants Farm Holiday Lights

The Holiday Lights Drive-Through at Grant’s Farm is back. This year, it takes you through the Bauernhof courtyard where you can see favorite animals, Santa, Mrs. Claus, a 50-foot LED Christmas tree synced to car radio music, and the decorated Busch family home. It’s advised to buy tickets ahead to enjoy the one-million-light display.

Address: 7385 Grant Road, St. Louis, MO, 63123

New Year’s Eve Celebration | Dec 31, 2023

You will not want to miss this one-of-a-kind New Years’ Eve Celebration in St. Louis. The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra led by Norman Huynh, a favorite of St. Louis audiences known for his humor and high spirits will host the night.

What are they playing? It’s a surprise you’ll have to hear for yourself! But, this is a great way for you and your family to ring in 2024 with an evening of musical performances. This is an all-ages event with tickets starting at $47.

Location: Stifel Theater; 1400 Market St, St. Louis, MO 63103

New Year’s Eve At The Attic | Dec 31 (Details TBD)

new years eve

Eat, drink and dance 2023 away! The New Year’s Eve At The Attic event is back and bigger than ever! Come to one of the hottest spots in St. Louis, dine on the appetizer buffet, and dance to live musical performances throughout the night!

The ticket price also includes a champagne toast at midnight and fun party favors! Doors open at 5:00 p.m. the party goes until 1:30 a.m. and tickets are just $20.

Location: The Attic Music Bar; 4247 S Kingshighway Blvd, 2nd floor, St. Louis, MO

We also have our favorite things to do in St. Louis for every month. Just click on any month to plan your next STL adventure! January | February | March | April | May | June | July | August | September | October | November | December

Still wondering what to do in December? Check out our list of top things to do throughout Missouri in December!

Do you have an upcoming event that you would like to promote in a future monthly edition? Click here for more information and to submit your event.

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