Myrtle Beach is better known as a summer playground than a winter wonderland, but longtime visitors know another side of the Grand Strand – one filled with holiday-themed events, festivals and shows. Guests at Breakers Resort can enjoy a wide selection of Christmas activities. Here are some of the Grand Strand's holiday highlights:
Nov. 2-Dec. 31, Christmas Shows: Local theaters save their best productions of the year for last with a series of Christmas shows taking center stage. On Nov. 2, several holiday shows open on the Grand Strand, including the Alabama Theatre's "The South's Grandest Christmas," The Carolina Opry's "Christmas Show of the South," and the Palace Theatre's "Christmas Wonderland." The family friendly shows are sure to put everyone in the holiday spirit.
Nov. 7-Dec. 31, Festival of Trees: There's something fishy this holiday season at Ripley's Aquarium, like the appearance of trees. The Festival of Trees runs through Christmas and features 50 trees decorated to represent each state in the union. Oh yeah, there are lots of sharks looking for a holiday feast, too.
Nov. 12-14, Dickens Christmas Show & Festivals: The Myrtle Beach Convention Center travels back in time to recreate a 19th century English village complete with costumed vendors selling period wares. Based on Charles Dickens' classic novel "A Christmas Story," this event features antique and handmade gifts, arts and crafts, holiday decorations and more. Exhibits highlight the history of Christmas pasts and other holiday novelties, and several off-site events are at local theaters, restaurants and attractions throughout the season.
Nov. 26-28, 46th Annual South Carolina State Bluegrass Festival: Myrtle Beach becomes the bluegrass music capital over Thanksgiving weekend for an event that has become a family tradition on the Grand Strand. Featuring some of the biggest names in bluegrass, acoustic and gospel music performing for three days at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center, this festival attracts large crowds to see such artists as Daly & Vincent, Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver, and many others.
Nov. 26-Dec 31: Christmas Wonderland: The new North Myrtle Beach Sports and Recreation Center is magically transformed into a Christmas Wonderland during the holidays. Held from Nov. 26 through Dec. 31, this festival features a wide range of Christmas activities for the whole family, but the highlight is the Hayride Lights Extravaganza. Guests can snuggle up in a wagon and ride through the high-tech light display while holiday music plays in concert with the dazzling light show. Held from 5:30 to 10:30 p.m., the Christmas Wonderland also features a 3D Walk to the North Pole, a Christmas Under the Sea Puppet Show, Rudolph's Buddies Petting Zoo, the Great Christmas Paintball Challenge, and the Cirqu-Du-Elf circus act, as well as live music, Santa photos and fireworks. Admission is free but some activities require a small fee.
Nov. 28, Intracoastal Christmas Regatta: You've never seen a parade like this one. Vessels ranging from small john boats to luxury yachts are decorated and lined up to light up the Intracoastal Waterway with Christmas cheer. The parade sails out at 5 p.m. and slowly flows downstream from Little River Inlet to Dock Holiday's, arriving at approximately 7 p.m. for a dockside party.
Nov. 28, Holiday Spirits Bonfire: La Belle Amie Vineyard in Little River is home to great wine and good times at this shindig. Sample a wide variety of La Belle Amie’s top labels and enjoy barbecue and live music in the Little River countryside.
Dec. 3-19, Nights of a Thousand Candles: The holiday event of the year on the Grand Strand sees Christmas lights and spirit overtake this botanical sculpture garden at night. For nine evenings only, guests can stroll through the scenic sculptures and plant life and enjoy the 5,500 lights, holiday decorations, Christmas caroling and other performances.
Dec. 5-23, Breakfast with Santa: The most important meal of the day is especially critical to Santa, who has to fuel up before traveling around the world with only cookies and milk to snack on. Santa is carbo-loading in Myrtle Beach before he flies the friendly skies, and you can join him at any of these "Breakfast With Santa" events: Hard Rock Cafe in Myrtle Beach, the North Myrtle Beach Community Center on Dec. 12 (9 a.m. to 1 p.m.), Market Common on Dec. 5, 12 and 19 (9 a.m. to 10 a.m.), Surfside Beach at the Golden Egg on Dec. 19 (9 to 10:30 a.m.), and the Childrens Museum of South Carolina on Dec. 23.
Dec. 13, 12th Annual Christmas Towne: The Myrtle Beach Convention Center is the site for a true Christmas celebration with all the trimmings. Free photos with Santa, kids play section, and the city of Myrtle Beach's official tree lighting ceremony, are among the festivities scheduled for this free event.
Dec. 26-31, Beach Ball Classic: For the 35th consecutive year, the biggest high school basketball tournament in the nation comes to the Myrtle Beach Convention Center for six days of fantastic hoops action. The Beach Ball Classic attracts some of the top teams and talent to the Myrtle Beach Convention Center for a showcase so basketball fans can see the future stars of college basketball and the NBA.
No matter which of these holiday events you choose to attend, make the Breakers Resort your home for the Christmas season. Featuring comfortable accommodations, excellent amenities and a friendly and hospitable staff, the Breakers Myrtle Beach Resort will make you feel right at home for the holidays.