Seven area events to put you in a festive mood


Christmas is just around the corner. If you are looking to spend quality time with family and friends in or near Annapolis, or if you prefer to a grab a bit of quiet time alone leading up to the holiday, one of the events listed below may pique your interest.

The Nutcracker at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts

The Ballet Theatre of Maryland will perform The Nutcracker at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, located at 801 Chase Street in Annapolis. A free Sugar Plum Party will be held before Sunday performances. Ticket holders can mingle with dancers in costume.

Performances will be held from December 13- 21. Tickets range from $22-$47 plus ticket fees. For more information, visit:

Eastport Yacht Club Lights Parade

Bundle up, boat lovers. Consider taking a trip to historic downtown Annapolis on Saturday, December 13 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. to attend one of Annapolis’ biggest signature events. See power and sail boats illuminated with thousands of colored lights on Spa Creek and Ego Alley. The event is sponsored by the Eastport Yacht Club. For more information, visit:

Evangel Cathedral’s Christmas celebration

This year’s Christmas celebration for gospel music lovers will include Yolanda Adams, Donnie McClurkin, Marvin Sapp, Erica Campbell and other leading artists at Evangel Cathedral. According to the website, 200 live animals, a laser light show, special effects and new scenes will be a part of the family-friendly event. To purchase tickets, call 301-249-9400 or visit: Tickets range from $65 -$85.

Shows will be held at Evangel Cathedral, 13901 Central Ave in Upper Marlboro, Md. Remaining performance dates are from December 14 -21.

National Harbor ICE!

If you head toward 201 Waterfront Street, National Harbor, Md., look for a walk-through winter wonderland called ICE! Visitors step inside of a hand-sculpted winter journey, designed by 40 international artisans. ICE!, reportedly consists of hand-carved ice sculptures, two-story tall ice slides and 5,000 blocks of ice weighing two million pounds. Ticket prices range from $21- $34 through January 4. For more information, visit:

gaylord-nationalfor more details or call: 202 438 2772

The Capital Wheel

While visiting National Harbor, you can warm up inside of one of 42-closed, heated gondolas, if riding 180 feet over the Potomac in an observation wheel appeals to the thrill-seeker in you. If you choose to do some shopping at Tanger Outlets at National Harbor before riding The Capital Wheel, save your receipt. Inquire about purchasing a $10 ticket to ride, instead of a $15 one for customers from 12-60 years old. The holiday promotion reportedly runs through Dec. 3. However, if you want to indulge in a VIP experience, the VIP gondola is $50 per person.

Festival of Lights

If you dare to compare other Christmas light displays with Sandy Point State Park’s, a holiday drive-through event featuring more than one million twinkling lights will be open for viewing from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. until January 1, 2015. Watkin Park’s 28th Annual Winter Festival of Lights is located at Watkins Park Drive (Route 193) in Upper Marlboro, Md. The $5 price is per car or van, but free on December 25. For more information, call 301-699-2456 or visit

Please bring some canned goods for local food bank donations.

Military Bowl Parade and football game

On December 27, 2014, the annual Military Bowl Parade will kick off at 9 a.m. at the City Dock in downtown Annapolis. The parade will be led by the world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales, community, military-themed groups along with marching bands and spirit squads from Virginia Tech and Cincinnati. Later that day, the Military Bowl will be presented by Northrop Grumman and benefit the USO. Virginia Tech and the University of Cincinnati will play in this year’s football game at the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. Ticket prices range from $20-$75. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit:

Please confirm event dates, times and special offers by visiting the recommended websites or by calling organizers for further information.

Compiled by Andrea Blackstone