November is finally here, and you know what that means, don’t you? That holiday season is basically upon us! But just because the holiday season is almost here doesn’t mean we’ll stop doing those fall things we love so much. That’s why we’re combining the best of fall with the start of the holidays, so you won’t miss a single thing this November. So here are the best 15 things to do in Detroit this November.
1. Día de Muertos
While Día de Muertos usually takes place from November 1 to 2, you can celebrate the Mexican tradition until November 5 at the Detroit Institute of Arts. Learn more about ofrendas and the Mexican traditions of the Day of the Dead with the 11th installment of Ofrendas: Celebrating el Día de Muertos. The exhibition features 13 offerings by local artists and community members to honor and remember the deceased.
2. Franklin Cider Mill
Is it really fall if you don’t visit a cider mill? If you didn’t have time to visit Franklin Cider Mill on October, don’t worry you still have until November 26. Indulge in the delightful tastes of fall, including freshly pressed cider and warm donuts, prepared daily using an old German spice recipe.
3. Candlelight concerts
Experience the magic of Candlelight concerts in some of Detroit’s historic venues. These live musical experiences, often feature classical and holiday-themed performances, create an intimate atmosphere perfect for staying warm inside. Kick off the holiday season the right way!
4. Paint Creek Trail
If you’re all about that outdoor adventure, Paint Creek Trail is your spot. The fall colors make this trail a breathtaking escape in Metro Detroit. Take in the crisp air, and bring your hiking boots and camera for Insta-worthy photos!
5. Griffin Claw Brewing Co.
Griffin Claw Brewing Co. is a gem for those seeking the essence of fall in a glass. You have to try their Screamin’ Pumpkin Ale that’s like sipping on a pumpkin pie. And if you’re up for a bolder brew, don’t miss their Bourbon Imperial Screamin’ Pumpkin, a big oaky, spiced pumpkin beer with notes of vanilla and bourbon.
6. All Things Detroit: Holiday Experience
Holidays in Detroit don’t start until the All Things Detroit Holiday Experience returns on November 5 —or that’s what they say, don’t @ me!— But if one thing is sure, it’s that this holiday market is the perfect place to kick off your holiday season. With more than 200 small businesses selling local and handmade wares, original products, and food, you’ll have more than enough to fill those Christmas stockings.
7. Downtown Detroit Winter Markets
If 200 shops aren’t enough, then head to Downtown Detroit Winter Markets on November 9 to get your jingle on. Returning to Cadillac Square this month, this year’s market will host more than a dozen local businesses, family-friendly activities, food stalls, live entertainment, and more.
8. 1001 Winter Wonders
November is the perfect month to get your Christmas To-Do List in order. So, if snapping a pic with the old jolly man in red is on that list, 1001 Winter Wonders will definitely do wonders —no pun intended! From November 16 to 24, take a FREE pic with Santa on a first come, first served basis. And to make this holiday season more inclusive, they’ll offer sensory adaptations and wheelchair-accessible layouts. The pre-register for this sensory-friendly Santa experience will be on December 2 between 4:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. or December 8 between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
9.Wayne County Lightfest
Christmas without lights? We don’t think so! That’s why Wayne County Lightfest will have a magical five-mile stretch of Hines Park, displaying nearly 50 animated-themed displays and more than 100,000 lights this year. From November 16 to December 24, enjoy the light show from Wednesday to Sunday, starting from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Pro Tip: try popping by during the weekday, if you can, to avoid the big wait lines that form on weekends.
10. Detroit Tree Lighting Ceremony
Get ready to brighten up your season at the 20th annual Detroit Tree Lighting Ceremony on November 17 in Campus Martius Park. Join the celebration as a majestic Michigan-grown Norway spruce illuminates the park, accompanied by live music, the ice rink opening, and dazzling performances by Olympic figure skaters. Enjoy holiday shopping, food trucks, and enchanting lighting displays throughout downtown Detroit this season.
11.The Rink at Campus Martius Park
Whether you’re a pro or a beginner, The Rink is your go-to spot this season. From November 18 through March, lace up your skates and glide onto the ice to show off your skills. You can also revel in the holiday lights and explore the offerings from local vendors and restaurants, making it the perfect “staycation” with plenty of activities to choose from.
12. The Big, Bright Light Show
Take a detour to Downtown Rochester this November and catch their Big, Bright Light Show from November 20 to January 21. More than 1 million points of glimmering holiday lights will cover downtown Rochesters’ buildings in the spectacular light show every evening until midnight.
13. Strategic Staffing Solutions Turkey Trot
The parade before the parade! This year, the acclaimed Strategic Staffing Solutions Turkey Trot returns bigger and better. On November 23, put on your funkiest costume and run a 10k, 5k, 1 mile, or any combo event with thousands to kick off Thanksgiving day. Register here for a ton of fun. FYI: If you’ve already registered, don’t forget that you can get your packet in advance at any of these locations or on November 22 between noon and 7:00 p.m. at Huntington Place Expo, Room E.
14. America’s Thanksgiving Parade
On November 23, gather the squad and enjoy America’s Thanksgiving Parade. Giant inflatables, out-of-this-world floats, dancing elves, over-the-top marching bands, lots of laughter, and, of course, Santa will be part of this year’s parade. Stretching 3 miles along Woodward Avenue from Kirby to Congress, catch your favorite characters in action and celebrate the official start of the holiday season.
15. Wild Lights at Detroit Zoo
‘Tis the season to be WILD fa la la la la la la la! Wrap up your November and head over to the Wild Lights at Detroit Zoo on November 24 to experience the wild side of the holiday season. The zoo goes full winter wonderland with a magical transformation with more than a thousand lights. Watch the lights change colors to the sound of music at Field of Light, dive into a underwater scene at the Underwater Trail, or immerse yourself in a childhood wonderland at the Toyland and Wishing Tree. —There’s fun for all the family!