Out & About: 9 Things to Do for the Holidays 2016

Play in the snow, don antlers for a fun run and celebrate 2017 with mochi at these fun holiday events.

Santa and reindeer

November 26


Christmas Carnival

Take a photo with Santa, get a balloon animal, have your face painted and make festive arts and crafts. Bring a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots and you’ll receive a wristband for unlimited kids’ rides.

Koko Marina Center, ALL AGES, Saturday, Nov. 26, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., kokomarinacenter.com


November 26

Snow Day


Expect big crowds at this free fun day on the West Side. Families usually start showing up before the start time for a chance to play in 30 tons of snow, free games, balloons and photos with Santa. So be ready for a (chilly) crowd. 

Kapolei Commons, ALL AGES, Saturday, Nov. 26, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., thekapoleicommons.com


December 3

City Lights Family Evening

Christmas lights

Get a front-row seat to the Honolulu City Lights parade and tree lighting without camping out overnight. A $5 ticket gives you access to 19th-century kids’ activities and games right before you settle into your prime spot to watch the parade pass by.

Hawaiian Mission Houses, ALL AGES, Saturday, Dec. 3, 4 to 9 p.m.,447-3910, missionhouses.org


December 10

Ka‘ena Point Natural Area Reserve Hike

Photo: Kim Camacho Photography

Take a walk on the westernmost point of O‘ahu with the Hawai‘i Nature Center. Older kids will learn about Hawaiian history while keeping an eye out for sea birds, native plants and, if you’re lucky, a humpback whale during this 5-mile hike along the coastline.

Ka‘ena Point, 7 years and older, Saturday, Dec. 10, 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.,955-0100, hawaiinaturecenter.org


December 10

Brunch With Santa


Fill up on pancakes, eggs, Portuguese sausage and more at the buffet, then sit for a photo with Santa, play games, make arts and crafts and snap selfies with characters. Kids younger than 2 are free but will not have a seat. Keep in mind, the $35 for adults, $25 for kids ticket prices do not include the $6 for parking, but the event is a fundraiser for Prevent Child Abuse Hawai‘i.

Pōmaika‘i Ballrooms at Dole Cannery, ALL AGES, Saturday, Dec. 10, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., 951-0200, preventchildabusehawaii.org


December 16—December 18

The Nutcracker

Photo: Courtesy of Hawai‘i State Ballet


Join Clara as she dances her way through a world of playful sweets, fairies, mouse kings and a gallant nutcracker prince in this holiday favorite. Tickets for the 30-year-old Hawai‘i State Ballet tradition start at $16 for children, $20 for adults.

Mamiya Theatre, Ages 5 and up, Friday, Dec. 16 through Sunday, Dec. 18, various times, 947-2755, hawaiistateballet.com


December 17 and December 18

Santa’s Secret Workshop


Join Santa’s helpers for a day of holiday fun that includes arts and crafts stations, activity stations, gingerbread cookie decorating, carousel rides and more. The $30 registration fee includes admission to the center.

Hawai‘i Children’s Discovery Center, 6 years and younger, Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 17 and 18, two sessions: 9 to 10:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 524-5437, discoverycenterhawaii.org


December 18

Jingle Rock Fun Run


Don your festive apparel, reindeer antlers, etc., and join this fundraiser for Make-a-Wish Hawai‘i. The keiki run for kids 12 years and younger ends with a medal for everyone and you can take in the Christmas lights all along the route. 

State Capitol area, ALL AGES, Sunday, Dec. 18, 3 to 7:30 p.m., 537-3118, hawaii.wish.org


January 8

New Year’s ‘Ohana Festival

Ohana festival

Celebrate the New Year with a dose of Japanese culture. This means kids can chow down on noodles and Japanese treats, play games for a chance at a prize, enjoy taiko and dance performances, and pound mochi.

Here’s a tip: If you want a Spam musubi, get there early. Those always sell out.

Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i Mō‘ili‘ili Field, ALL AGES, Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., 945-7633, jcch.com


Want more? See our full roundup of events including Santa hours and city light trolleys in our Holiday Corner.