Two Saturdays ago, I, along with a few other local bloggers, was lucky enough to be invited by Downtown Cincinnati, Inc. to get a sneak-peak of all the holiday fun Downtown Cincy has to offer.  Everyone’s toddlers tagged along – all three and four years olds – and P had just as much fun as I did. Nicholson’s provided a lovely lunch for all of us (heck, we’re such big stuff the MAYOR even dropped in to say hello!)  and then we hit the town.  I knew about some of the things – like the world’s best Santa at Macy’s and the ice-skating of course, but there is so much more to see and do in our Queen  City.  Carriage Rides courtesy of Macy’s….Holly Jolly Trolly Rides courtesy of P&G….the train display at Duke…a lovely gingerbread house display at the Hyatt.  I’ve said it before – Christmas Time makes Cincinnati shine.

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You can read all about everything there is to do at DCI’s website.  Believe me, there is too much for one afternoon or evening surely, so plan a couple trips Downtown this year.  This is a holiday tradition that makes great memories and does good for the heart of our amazing city.

So armed with all this new information, I wanted to make a family day of it so Doug could experience it too.  This past weekend we jam-packed Saturday and didn’t stop til we dropped.

First up, “Sleeping Beauty” at The Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati.  This production was terrific and you can read all about it and get details over at Family Friendly Cincinnati.  You don’t want to miss this show.

Next, we headed to McCormick and Schmick’s (DCI provided us with a gift card to come back and of course it was burning a whole in my pocket).  Dinner, as always, was delicious and bonus – KIDS EAT FREE ON SATURDAYS with the purchase of an adult entree.  SCORE!

Not that P ate anything – she was too strung out anticipating the arrival of SANTA CLAUS.  After dinner we headed over to Fountain Square which is so beautifully decorated, you can’t help but hum along with the Christmas music.  The Big Guy himself arrived in high style jumping off the 525 Vine Building along with Rudolph and a very wild Elf, followed by take-your-breath-away firework display.  It was quietest P has been since…well…ever.

After that, the masses descended on Macy’s for pictures with Santa and story-time with the woman behind the legend – Mrs. Claus.  We held back and P took a turn (well a half turn) around the skating rink.  It was hilarious and adorable of course.  I don’t think the little gal is ready for the big ice, but I know she had a blast giving it a try.

Once Doug and P were sufficiently cold and exhausted from the ice, we headed over to Macy’s to check in with Santa (as all parents know, the list for Santa changes with each new commercial).  The great thing about Macy’s Santa is you can take your own pictures.  No high-priced mall packages here baby!  I love that.  It is incredibly generous of Macy’s and their Santa is splendid with the children.

We finished the night with some Hot Cocoa and a stroll around the city.  P didn’t make it out of the parking garage before falling fast asleep.

We missed a few things and plan to head back next weekend after we see Holiday Follies at The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati.  Oh, how I love Christmas time! You can see all our pics from this adventure here at my Flickr page.

Out of town? Cincinnati is a perfect weekend destination and now is the perfect time to plan your visit.  More information on accommodations can be found here.