Fun December Christmas Events in the Wilmington Area

Christmas Lights

Looking for a fun December Christmas event in the Wilmington, NC, area? Here are some that captured our interest. Visit the links for more information.

The Santaland Diaries by David Sedaris

December 6th – December 16th

Produced by Panache Theatre Company at Ruth & Bucky Stein Theatre at Thalian Hall. This hilarious comedy, written by David Sedaris, looks at the misadventures of working for Macy’s Santaland as a disgruntled Santa’s elf. This hilarious and not politically correct look at the holidays features Kevin Wilson as Crumpet joined by The Not Ready for Christmas Carolers and directed by Anthony David Lawson. Adult language and subject matter.

A Christmas Carol: The Musical

December 7th – December 16th

Music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, and book by Lynn Ahrens and Mike Ockrent: Produced by Thalian Association Community Theatre on the Main Stage at Thalian Hall. Broadway heavy hitters Alan Menken (Disney’s Beauty and the Beast) and Lynn Ahrens, breathe fantastic new life into the classic tale of A Christmas Carol. Ebenezer Scrooge, a prosperous curmudgeon, is forced to face his selfish ways when three ghosts on Christmas Eve lead him through his Past, Present and Future.

Illumination 2018

December 8th – January 13th

Cameron Art Museum
3201 South 17th Street, Wilmington, NC 28412
Phone: (910) 395-5999

The Cameron Art Museum brings back this artistic light show for a fourth installment featuring what the museum calls “original illuminated sculptures” created by artists from around the country. As part of “Illumination 2018,” on Sunday, December 9 a floating lantern ceremony will allow patrons to send small lighted lanterns out on the museum’s pond. Dec. 8-Jan. 13 at Cameron Art Museum.

The Island of Lights – Tour of Homes

December 8th, Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.


Take a self-guided tour through some of Pleasure Island’s (Carolina & Kure Beaches) most beautiful homes when they are decorated for the holidays. Enjoy southern hospitality at its best as the owners welcome you into the privacy of their homes for this special holiday treat.

Ahoy- Santa Comes to Town

December 8th, Saturday

Visitor’s Center at Water and Market Streets

This event starts with activities at 12:30 p.m. St. Nick arrives by a water-sleigh shortly after.

Christmas Stroll Through the Past

December 8th, Saturday

Bellamy Mansion Museum, Burgwin-Wright House, and St. James Episcopal Church

Join the Bellamy Mansion Museum, the Burgwin-Wright House, and St. James Episcopal Church for a festive evening filled with holiday décor, live music, period costumes, refreshments, children’s activities, and more. The event will be held from 4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Purchase tickets at Bellamy Mansion Museum or the Burgwin-Wright House. $20/adult. $10/children ages 3-18. Free for children 3 and under. Prices do not reflect sales tax. A portion of each ticket sold goes directly to the Bellamy Mansion Museum and Burgwin-Wright House for educational and preservation efforts.

Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol by Tom Mula

Until December 16th

Produced by Big Dawg Productions at Cape Fear Playhouse. “Marley was dead, to begin with…” —and what happens to Ebeneezer Scrooge’s mean, sour, pruney old business partner after that? Chained and shackled, Marley is condemned to a hellish eternity. He’s even given his own private tormentor: a malicious little hell-sprite who thoroughly enjoys his work. Desperate, Marley accepts his one chance to free himself: To escape his own chains, he must first redeem Scrooge. So begins a journey of laughter and terror, redemption and renewal, during which Scrooge’s heart, indeed, is opened; but not  before Marley—in this irreverent, funny and deeply moving story—discovers his own.

Christmas Cactus by Eliot Byerrum

Until December 23rd


A gumshoe caper that’s a Dickens of a mystery! Christmas Eve is tough for private investigator Cactus O’Riley, a white hot redhead with the holiday blues. She is trying to lure her secretary Fred away from his protective mother, dodging the affections of Deputy D.A. Windsor, and considering closing her business. She doesn’t need the added aggravation of two fugitives who burst into her office looking for justice and a dead detective named Jake Marley. Christmas turns into a dickens of a holiday for Cactus as she solves mysteries, delivers small miracles and takes a second chance on love and sleuthing. Comedy, mystery, and romance converge in this charming contemporary Christmas tale where goodwill and justice triumph. (Courtesy Samuel French)

Artisan Holiday Market

Open Until December 24th

Mayfaire Town Center

Hours are 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday and Noon – 6:00 p.m. on Sundays. Hosted by Going Local NC, the Artisan Holiday Market is located on 6859 Monument Dr. and showcases a gourmet local foodie market, natural skincare shop and art gallery, as well as products from local artists who create hand-crafted paintings, pottery, woodwork, jewelry, ornaments, candles, soaps, clothing, and curios.

Cape Fear Festival of Trees

Until December 30th

North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher
900 Loggerhead Rd., Kure Beach, NC 28449

Dozens of beautiful Christmas trees are presented throughout the aquarium, offering a unique way to enjoy this honored tradition. Proceeds benefit Lower Cape Fear Hospice Foundation. Purchase of NC Aquarium tickets grants you entrance to the Festival of Trees at no additional charge from 9:00 a.m – 5:00 p.m.

Holiday Window Displays

Until December 31st

Mayfaire Town Center

Area schools decked the halls of Mayfaire with beautiful, holiday window displays. Click here for a map of the displays.

Holiday Skate Rink

Open Until January 1st

Mayfaire Town Center

Mayfaire offers Wilmington’s only outdoor skating rink. The 40’ x 80’ synthetic ice rink is located in the parking lot on International drive, across from Belk. You may reserve ice time ($10 for 50-min. pass) and skates, which are available for rent ($5/person in addition to skate pass), or you may bring your own skates. Visit for pricing and hours.

Did we miss something good? Share the event in the comments!

[the_grid name=”Events”]

About the Author
Meghan Henderson
Meghan is the Marketing Specialist for The Cameron Team and a published author of two young adult books. She also creates digital and printable planners and trackers, as well as coloring pages for Larkspur & Tea.