Prescott Christmas Events to Celebrate this Holiday Season

By: Melissa Byrne Portrait Photography

Looking for Prescott Christmas events? Welcome to Prescott, affectionately known as Arizona’s Christmas City, a title it proudly earned in 1989. This charming town transforms into a winter wonderland every December, honoring its long-standing tradition of spectacular holiday celebrations. “Christmas City” isn’t just a title—it’s also a reflection of the festive spirit that envelops Prescott during the holiday season. Prescott’s holiday festivities make it a must-visit destination for those seeking to experience the magic of the season.

Prescott Courthouse Lighting: A Sparkling Start to Prescott Christmas Events

First Saturday in December, Downtown Prescott, Arizona

Christmas events in Prescott start with the Courthouse Lighting. Prescott, Arizona Courthouse decorated in holiday lights.
Prescott Courthouse with Holiday Lights by Melissa Byrne Photography.


The tradition of the Prescott Courthouse Lighting is a time-honored one, stretching back over six decades. This beloved event first illuminated the heart of Prescott in the 1950s, establishing itself as a cornerstone of the town’s holiday celebrations. Over the years, it has grown in scale and splendor, yet it has faithfully preserved its original charm and purpose – to bring the community together in a luminous celebration of the festive season. Each year, as the Courthouse lights up, it brightens the town and rekindles the memories of countless Christmases past. It creates a continuous thread of joy and tradition that weaves through the generations in Prescott.

Event Details

The Prescott Courthouse Lighting is a centerpiece event in Arizona’s Christmas City, casting a warm, festive glow over the heart of the town. This enchanting ceremony, held annually on the first Saturday of December, marks the beginning of the holiday season in Prescott. As dusk falls, the anticipation builds among the gathered crowd, a mix of locals and visitors alike, all eager to witness the spectacle.

The Courthouse, a historic and architectural gem, becomes the canvas for this festive event. Thousands of lights, meticulously strung by dedicated volunteers, adorn the building and the surrounding trees, transforming the plaza into a twinkling wonderland. The moment when the switch is flipped is magical. The entire area bursts into radiant light, eliciting cheers and gasps of delight from the onlookers.

The Courthouse Lighting is a community gathering that celebrates the spirit of the season. Choirs from local schools add to the ambiance with Christmas carols. There’s a sense of joy and togetherness, as people of all ages come together to share in the beauty and tradition of this special event. It’s a reminder of the simple pleasures of the holiday season – community, tradition, and the joy of light in the darkness of winter.

As we delve deeper into the heart of Prescott’s Christmas events, it becomes clear why this town is hailed as Arizona’s Christmas City. Each event adds its own unique flavor to Prescott’s holiday season, making it a destination brimming with cheer and festive activities.

Prescott Christmas Parade

First Saturday in December, downtown Prescott, Arizona

One of the must-attend Prescott Christmas events is the annual Christmas Parade. This delightful parade, usually held on the same day as the Courthouse Lighting, winds its way through historic downtown. It features a colorful array of floats, marching bands, and community groups, all decked out in their holiday best.

The Prescott Christmas Parade is a hallmark among Prescott Christmas events, weaving a tapestry of community spirit and festive joy through the heart of Arizona’s Christmas City. This parade has become a beloved tradition for residents and visitors. Local businesses, schools, and community groups participate with enthusiasm, showcasing the close-knit community spirit that Prescott is known for.

Where to go

As the parade marches down Gurley and Cortez streets, the air fills with the sounds of marching bands playing holiday classics, blending with the laughter and chatter of the excited crowd. Children’s faces light up with delight as they watch the parade, eagerly awaiting the much-anticipated arrival of Santa Claus. The jolly figure waves from his festively adorned sleigh, bringing smiles and cheer to all. The parade’s climax is a heartfelt reminder of the joy and magic that the holiday season brings.

The Prescott Christmas Parade is a testament to our town’s vibrant community spirit. Watch local talents shine. From dance troupes performing lively routines to choirs singing carols. The parade serves as an opportunity for local charities and organizations to connect with the community.

The Prescott Christmas Parade is more than just a festive event. It’s a celebration of community, tradition, and the enduring spirit of the holiday season. It stands as a key highlight of Prescott Christmas events, drawing people together in a festive embrace and leaving them with cherished memories and a renewed sense of community spirit.

Selfie Stroll: A DIY Photo Experience

Holiday themes every weekend November – December, at Melissa Byrne Photography, 1963 Commerce Center Circle Prescott, AZ

Image shows a mom taking a holiday photo of her daughter at the Selfie Stroll, one of Prescott's Christmas events.
A mom snaps a holiday photo of her daughter at the Selfie Stroll – A DIY Photo Experience.

The Selfie Stroll – A DIY Photo Experience is a playful addition to the Prescott Christmas events. Selfie Stroll offers a unique opportunity for visitors to capture their holiday spirit in a fun, interactive way. Throughout November and December, the studio transforms into a festive wonderland with multiple holiday-themed scenes that change weekly. Imagine snapping a cozy picture at the Hot Cocoa Bar. Pose by a charming Tree Farm, or capture a moment of joy at the Christmas Carnival. Selfie Stroll includes a range of captivating backdrops such as a vintage red truck and glowing holiday marquees. You’ll find a whimsical reindeer barn, and beautifully decorated holiday entryways. This array of scenes provides the perfect setting for everyone to unleash their creativity and make lasting holiday memories.

How it works:

With the purchase of a pass, up to 5 visitors can enter. Visitors take unlimited phone photos during their allotted time slot. Selfie Stroll allows them to capture the holiday season in their own unique way. The beauty of the Selfie Stroll is that it caters to everyone. If you’re looking to create the perfect holiday card or update your social media with festive photos. Share some cheerful images with relatives. The studio’s varied and weekly-changing scenes ensure that every visit offers something new and exciting. Selfie Stroll is an ideal destination for both repeat visitors as well as first-timers. Using your own phone means you can leave with all your images, ready to share with the world in real-time.

The Selfie Stroll is not just about taking pictures. It’s an experience that brings fun and joy to the holiday season. It’s perfect for families, friends, and visiting relatives, offering a playful and interactive way to enjoy the holidays together. The studio’s festive atmosphere, combined with the diverse and vibrant scenes, makes it a standout among Prescott Christmas events. It’s an innovative way to celebrate the season, providing a delightful and engaging experience that visitors will cherish. So grab your phone, and bring your holiday cheer! Get ready to stroll, pose, and click your way through this unique photographic adventure in Prescott! Learn more here: or see the scenes and schedule your time here: http://selfie

Acker Night: Celebrating Music of the Christmas Season

Downtown Prescott, AZ.

Another highlight is the Acker Night Music Showcase. The streets of Prescott come alive with music and performances. Local businesses and venues open their doors to host musicians and entertainers, creating a vibrant, city-wide celebration of the arts. This event showcases local talent and also honors the legacy of J.S. Acker, a patron of Prescott’s arts community.

Acker Night, a gem among Prescott Christmas events, transforms the historic downtown into a lively musical festival. This unique event invites attendees to move from one venue to another, each offering a different musical experience. The variety of music played echoes through the crisp winter air, offering something for every musical taste. The atmosphere is electric, with the melodies and rhythms creating a festive backdrop for the holiday season.

The charm of Acker Night extends beyond the music. It’s a community-driven event that embodies the spirit of giving. Musicians and performers donate their time and talents. Local businesses provide the spaces, all to support the J.S. Acker Music Park Association. This organization funds scholarships and music education programs for Prescott’s youth. Acker Night is not just a celebration of music; it’s an investment in the future of Prescott’s artistic legacy.

In conclusion, Acker Night stands as a pillar among Prescott Christmas events. It showcases the town’s commitment to culture, community, and the arts. It’s an evening where music, community, and the season create a magical experience that’s unique to Prescott’s Christmas celebrations. Learn more here:

Frontier Christmas: A Nostalgic Journey through Prescott’s Festive Past

Sharlot Hall Museum in Prescott, Arizona

The Sharlot Hall Museum hosts a Frontier Christmas. Visitors can step back in time and experience the holidays as they were celebrated in Prescott’s early days. This event offers a unique glimpse into the town’s history, complete with period decorations and reenactments.

Frontier Christmas is a standout among Prescott Christmas events. It offers a peaceful and reflective contrast to the more bustling celebrations around town. As you wander through the museum’s grounds, you’re transported to the 19th century. The historic buildings adorned in traditional holiday décor reminiscent of the era. The air is filled with the sound of folk music, setting a scene that is both nostalgic and heartwarming. Volunteers dressed in period attire demonstrate old-fashioned crafts and trades, providing an interactive and educational experience. This event not only celebrates the season but also pays homage to Prescott’s rich heritage. Frontier Christmas is a meaningful and enriching part of the city’s festive lineup. Learn more here:

31st Annual Gingerbread Village: A Sweet Feature of Prescott’s Holiday Festivities

Thanksgiving – New Year’s at the Prescott Resort

The 31st Annual Gingerbread Village is a sweet addition to Prescott Christmas events. It attracts visitors and locals alike with its whimsical and creative display of gingerbread houses. This delightful event showcases the artistry and imagination of participants ranging from professional bakers to schoolchildren. Each gingerbread creation is a masterpiece, decorated and designed, reflecting themes that range from traditional Christmas scenes to modern designs. The Gingerbread Village has become a beloved tradition in Prescott, offering a festive and charming experience for all ages.

Visiting the Gingerbread Village is more than just an opportunity to admire the confectionary craftsmanship. It’s a journey into a festive wonderland. The intricate details of each gingerbread house tell a unique story, capturing the spirit of the holidays in edible form. The event also includes a competition, adding an element of excitement as judges award prizes for the most impressive designs. This annual showcase highlights the creativity of the Prescott community. It serves as a joyful gathering place to celebrate, reinforcing the community spirit that makes Prescott’s Christmas events so special. Learn more here:

13th Annual New Year’s Eve Whiskey Row Boot Drop: A Grand Finale to Prescott’s Christmas Events

Sunday, December 31, 2003, starting at 7:30p on Whiskey Row in downtown Prescott, Arizona

The Whiskey Row Boot Drop in Prescott, Arizona, stands as a unique highlight among Prescott Christmas events. The Boot Drop marks the transition from the old year into the new. This New Year’s Eve celebration, is a Prescott twist on the traditional ball drop seen around the world. Crowds gather on the historic Whiskey Row. They witness a glowing, six-foot-tall cowboy boot descending from a flagpole symbolizing the kick-off of the New Year. Accompanied by fireworks, the Boot Drop has quickly become a must-attend event for both locals and visitors. It adds a unique western flavor to New Year festivities.

The atmosphere around Whiskey Row during the Boot Drop is electric, filled with anticipation and excitement. The event features live music, street vendors, and various entertainment. It’s a festive and fun experience for people of all ages. The Boot Drop not only signifies a new year but also reflects the spirited and lively character of Prescott. As a finale to the Prescott Christmas events, it ensures the holidays in Arizona’s Christmas City end with a bang. Learn more or watch live here:

Prescott’s Christmas Events – Something for Everyone

Each of these events encapsulate the spirit of the season. They are a testament to Prescott’s commitment to maintaining and celebrating its rich traditions. This makes Prescott the perfect destination for anyone looking to immerse themselves in the festive spirit. The variety of Prescott Christmas events attract visitors from all over. They also bring the local community together and create a festive atmosphere that is truly unparalleled.

As we wrap up our journey through Prescott Christmas events, don’t forget the opportunity to capture professional holiday portraits. Whether you’re seeking a classic portrait, or you prefer the spontaneity of the Selfie Stroll, I have you covered. My studio offers the perfect backdrop for your holiday photos. Choose a professional portrait session or opt for the playful Selfie Stroll. You’re guaranteed to leave with heartwarming photos that perfectly encapsulate the spirit of the holidays in Arizona’s Christmas City. Book your session today and make this holiday season truly unforgettable! Click here to learn more about full holiday portrait sessions in Prescott: Or, to learn more about how the Selfie Stroll works, please click here:

Happy Holidays from Melissa Byrne Photography!

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