DC on a Dime: December Edition



Christmas gift shopping and holiday parties might be cleaning out your wallet, but there’s no need to spend a ton to get into the holiday spirit this December!

If your budget is making you feel a little like Ebenezer Scrooge, check out these three cheap (and mostly free) holiday activities to leave you cheery and bright! Grab your best buddy and warm up with some hot cocoa– it’s time to get celebratin’!

Gaze at some Holiday Light Displays

Photo Cred: Georgetown Glow DC

There are several Christmas Light Displays free for your viewing pleasure all around the DMV! During the entire month of December you can stroll around Georgetown for Georgetown GLOW- an artistic take on holiday lights.

#FrayLife Tip: Download the Georgetown GLOW map ahead of time to make it a glowy scavenger hunt!

If you’re feeling like you need a change from the typical holiday light shows, visit the National Zoo, after hours through January, for Zoo Lights! This is the only place in the city where you can say hello to lions while you take a peek at some of the city’s most festive displays. What could be better than that?

But if traditional, residential lighting is more your speed- try Holly’s Tacky Christmas Light’s Annual Map. Holly, the real MVP, creates an annual list (and google map!!!!) of the most decked-out homes in Northern VA!

Have a favorite neighborhood spot to see sights beyond the City Center Twinkling lights and Union Station Wreaths? Tag your photos with the #FrayLife Tag so we can follow along!

Lace up your Skates and Brave the Ice Rink

Is there a more quintessential winter activity than a good ole fashioned lap around the ice rink? You can get your skate on for $10 or less at The Wharf, Canal Park, Pentagon Row (Virginia), Veterans Plaza (Maryland) or the National Sculpture Garden! Remember to tack on a few more bucks for a skate rental. Or grab a date and glide straight to Washington Harbour Rink in Georgetown between 4 and 6 pm on Tuesdays for BOGO skate night and enjoy falling for, or all over, each other! 

#FrayLife Tip: If you’re a SW DC resident, show your ID on Mondays for $2 off at the Wharf Rink.

Window Shop at a Christmas Market

Photo Cred: Washington.org

This time of year, the city is absolutely crawling with Christmas Markets, and the best don’t bother with an entrance fee! Even if you’re all stocked up on gifts- or even if you’re opting out this year, they’re still a great place to check out some local vendors with unique items!

The Downtown Holiday Market is the largest- boasting 180 vendors and some fabulous nighttime lights, but it is not the only spot to browse and socialize! The streets of Adams Morgan will feature free live music and activities in addition to vendors December 8-9. Across the City, during weekends through December 16th, Wunder Garten is hosting it’s own mini pop-up shop with 15+ vendors (later this December, be sure to check out Wundergarten’s night of 1,000 santas).

#FrayLife BONUS Tip: Spend Christmas Eve with…Water-skiing Santa??:

Alexandria’s well-decorated Waterfront is proudly home to the longest-running Christmas Water-skiing show in the world. Since 1987, DMV residents and visitors have been able to watch Santa and some other VIPs waterski along Old Town’s Waterfront Park. It’s a show you won’t want to miss


Have a favorite spot to see sights beyond the City Center twinkling lights and Union Station wreaths? Tag your photos with the #FrayLife tag so we can follow along with you on all your winter adventures!


View More Articles By Brittney Miles



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