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Free fun for the family in December

Check out these activities for the family throughout the month of December all completely free. Keep boredom from setting in and your budget intact with this list of festivals, concerts, programs and holiday fun.

zoolights1 Friday

Midnight Madness
Visit with Santa, enjoy hot treats, shopping and more. Free. 6pm-midnight. Historic Ellicott City. visitellicottcity.com/events/midnight-madness-4

Polar Express Storytime
Come in your PJs and listen to The Polar Express. Coloring and activities to follow. Free. 7pm. Barnes and Noble, Annapolis. 410-573-1115, barnesandnoble.com

Christmas Village
Through Dec. 24. Holiday food, vendors, children’s activities and more. Check website for details and times. Inner Harbor, Baltimore. baltimore-christmas.com

Through Jan. 1. Closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Holiday lights, live music, treats and more. Free. Check websites for times. National Zoo, Washington, D.C. nationalzoo.si.edu

2 Saturday

Christmas Mart
More than 35 local artisans offering handcrafted items, holiday décor, and gifts. White elephant sale, a silent auction, baked goods and more. Free. 9am-2pm. [email protected] St. Martin’s-in-the-Field Episcopal Church, Severna Park

Glen Burnie High School Winter Craft Fair
Crafters display wood crafts, candles, clothing, jewelry, glassware, holiday decorations, and baked goods. Free. 9am-3pm. Glen Burnie High School, Glen Burnie. gbhsmusic.org/craftfairs.htm

Joyful Paws Holiday Open House
Family and pet pictures with Santa Claus, a bake sale, vendors, games, silent auctions and more. Free. 10am-3pm. Calvert Animal Welfare League, Prince Frederick. 410-535-9300, cawlrescue.org

Holiday Open House
Professional photos with Santa, interactive exotic animals exhibit and more. Free. 1-3pm. Baltimore Humane Society, Reisterstown. Bmorehumane.org

Harbor Holiday Movies
Showing of “A Christmas Carol,” rated PG. Bring blankets or lawn chairs. Free. 2pm. National Harbor. 877-628-5427, nationalharbor.com/movies-on-the-potomac

Lighting of the Christmas Tree
Lighting of the Living Farm Heritage Museum Christmas tree, live music, train garden, and a visit with Santa. Free. 5-7pm. Living Farm Heritage Museum, West Friendship. 410-489-2345, farmheritage.org

3 Sunday

Chocolate Binge Festival
Family friendly entertainment, chocolate, holiday shopping and the lighting of the new West Street Light Canopy. Other activities include giant gingerbread moon bounce, marshmallow roasting, pictures with Lady Godiva, and visits with Santa. Suggested donation of $5; children are free. Noon-5pm. First block of West Street, Annapolis. Annapolischocolatefestival.com

5 Tuesday

Polar Express
Holiday stories, crafts and treats. PJs welcome. Free; donations to local food bank are encouraged. 6:30pm. Riviera Beach Library. 410-222-6285, aacpl.net

7 Thursday

Slime Time
Make your own custom slime to take home. Free. 4:30pm. Brooklyn Park Library, Baltimore. 410-222-6260, aacpl.net

Annual Monument Lighting
Musical selections, photo booth with Santa, face painting, and fireworks. Free. 5-8pm. Mount Vernon, Baltimore. Godowntownbaltimore.com

NSO Salutes the Military
A holiday pops concert honoring the military. Featuring Megan Hilty. Free; reservations required. 7pm. The Kennedy Center, Washington D.C. 202-467-4600, kennedy-center.org

Midnight Madness
Dec. 7, 14 and 21. Shops in downtown Annapolis will remain open until midnight during this block party. Live music, food, and more. Free. 6pm-midnight. Downtown Annapolis. Downtownannapolispartnership.org

8 Friday

Photos with Santa
Visit with Santa, pose for pictures and help collect toys for local, needy children. Please bring your own camera for photos. Free; families are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy to benefit local, needy children. 3-5:30pm. 4179 Mountain Road, Pasadena. ArundelFederal.com

Christmas in St. Michaels
Dec. 8-10. Christmas parade, shopping, Santa’s Wonderland, Gingerbread House display, Celebration of Choirs and more. Check website for specific events and times. Free. St. Michael’s, various venues. Christmasinstmichaels.org

9 Saturday

Gingerbread House Workshop
Build a gingerbread house. Each child is asked to bring a bag of any edible item to share with the group. Please register. Free. 10-11am. Calvert Library Prince Frederick. 410-535-0291, calvert.lib.md.us

Harbor Holiday Movies
Showing of “Elf,” rated PG. Bring blankets or lawn chairs. Free. 2pm. National Harbor. 1-877-628-5427, nationalharbor.com/movies-on-the-potomac

Boat Lights Parade
Annual event features boats decorated with holiday lights. Free. 6-8pm. Annapolis Harbor and Spa Creek. eastportyc.org

10 Sunday

ALS Artisan Boutique
Approximately 55 artisans showcase their art including jewelry, pottery, glassware and more. Live music, food, raffles, children’s author Lisa McCue and more. Free. 10am-5pm. Crowne Plaza Annapolis Hotel. [email protected], facebook.com/AlsArtisanBoutique

Nature Songs with Stina
Join nature troubadour Stina for an afternoon indoor campfire sing along. Free. 2pm. National Wildlife Visitor Center, Laurel. fws.gov/refuge/patuxent

12 Tuesday

Nature Tots: Senses of Winter
Dec. 12 and 19. While seasons change, so do the smells. Come explore Patuxent using your senses. Free. 10:30-11:20am. National Wildlife Visitor Center, Laurel. fws.gov/refuge/patuxent

Crafternoon: Snow Globes
Create an animal snow globe. Free. 4-5pm. Laurel Library. 301-776-6790, pgcmls.info

14 Thursday

Little Elves’ Laboratory
Enjoy science and STEM activities using the supplies we have around the house for the holiday season. Snacks provided. Free. 6:30pm. Linthicum Library. 410-222-6265, aacpl.net

Click next below for more events Dec. 16-31.

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