Light the lights and deck the halls

With this weekend's snowfall and brisk temperatures, it's beginning to look - and feel -- a lot like Christmas and the fun-filled and festive season that is in store. In this third part of a series about getting the most of your Sun Valley holiday, mark you calendar for some very special events that will light the night and warm the heart.

The sparkling lights of the Village Display set the tone for a festive to come

The Village Light Display, a seasonal, eye-popping spectacle, sets the tone for things to come. From December 1 to January 5, the Sun Valley Village is aglow with thousands of tiny sparkling white lights. A stroll surrounded by these beautiful trees, underneath the vast star-filled Idaho winter sky, sets the mood for some holiday shopping in the fine Resort shops, enjoying après ski at a wonderful restaurant  or the Ram Lounge  or lingering over a meal with friends or family while watching the lights play off the snow. Be sure to take a walk through the Village no matter your destination. Nothing will better put you in a holiday frame of mind.

Don't miss great shopping opportunities at Village Shops including Brass Ranch that features Bogner skiwear and their Fire & Ice line that will be celebrated on December 13

And if shopping is on your to-do list, be sure to visit the Brass Ranch, Pete Lane’s and the Signature Shop on December 11 to support a very worthy local charity. On the 11th, a percentage of all sales will benefit the Advocates, a Valley-based organization dedicated to teaching people of all ages to build and maintain healthy relationships through education, shelter and support services. Check a few things off your holiday gift lift while helping the community.

Another reason to come out to shop will be the Bogner 25th Anniversary Fire & Ice Party at the Village Brass Ranch on December 13. Starting at 5:30 p.m., come see the latest ski fashions featuring Bogner’s fashionable, functional and popular Fire & Ice line while enjoying some seasonal treats and libations. If you are in the market for new skiwear for yourself or someone you care about, don’t miss this evening.

The annual Winter Wonderland Party is fun for the whole family

Fun for the entire family also takes place at the Sun Valley Village on December 13 with the annual and highly anticipated Winter Wonderland Party. From 1 - 4 pm, the Village transforms into an old-fashioned street from holidays gone by. A kids' train will whisk the little ones off for a ride while live holiday music performances, a free "wrap-n-run" gift wrapping service at the Signatures Gift Shop, hot cocoa and sweet and savory food offerings will infuse you with the holiday spirit. A special visit from Santa will also ensure your child or grandchild's wish list is well taken care in plenty of time. This is a fun, low-key and relaxing way to spend an afternoon with the little ones and enjoy what the holidays are all about.

Santa is a huge attraction at the Winter Wonderland Party

The self-guided Winter Wonderland Stroll begins at the party on the 13th and continues through January 5. Come enjoy the marvelous Austrian and stag-themed Holiday Window Displays throughout the Sun Valley Village and participate in a scavenger hunt that ends with a sweet treat. Pick up a free card at any Village shop or at the Sun Valley Inn.

The lighting of the Village Christmas tree truly marks the beginning of the countdown to the big day. It is a wonderful party for visitors and locals alike

If all of this activity and festivity wasn’t quite enough to begin the countdown to Christmas in earnest, then mark your calendar for December 20 when the Village Tree Lighting Ceremony will officially kick off the season. This iconic celebration promises to be better than ever and will feature the Sun Valley Carolers, gingerbread and cookie decorating, live holiday music, delicious food, hot cocoa, "wrap-and-run" gift wrapping and, of course, Santa. The beautiful Christmas evergreen is located just outside the front doors of the Sun Valley Inn and activities will be held throughout the Village. Bundle up and don't miss this one!

The world-famous Sun Valley Carolers add merriment and music throughout the Sun Valley Village throughout the season

After the world-famous Sun Valley Carolers make their debut at the Tree Lighting Ceremony on the 20th, they can be found throughout the Village and Sun Valley restaurants until December 30. Their classic costumes, gorgeous harmonies and copious good cheer will bring a smile to everyone’s face and leave you humming holiday favorites for the rest of the day!

Christmas Eve in Sun Valley is memorable with the traditional Ice Show and the beautiful Torch Light Parade down Dollar, followed by fireworks

Once the countdown to Christmas finally reaches Christmas Eve, the fun heats up even more, if that is possible. On Christmas Eve, Sun Valley will once again offer the traditional and wildly popular Holiday Ice Show followed by the Dollar Torchlight Parade. It is a spectacle to say the least! Ice show seating is available in the bleachers and the Terrace and free hot chocolate and cookies will be offered. This truly is one of the traditions that makes Sun Valley so special during the holidays. Be sure to check back to this blog for a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the Nutcracker on Ice.

The weather is cold but things are heating up for the best holiday in Sun Valley ever

To help parents enjoy the season without worry and to enjoy a little grown-up time (even if that just looks like wrapping presents away from curious eyes!), Sun Valley will offer Kids' Night Out Day-Care Services on December 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30. From 6 - 10 pm, children ages 1 to 7 are invited to join Sun Valley's amazing, professional staff for a fun and creative evening. Each night little ones will enjoy projects, books, indoor/outdoor play and an age appropriate movie. The cost is $60 per child per session and includes all activities. Dinner may be added on for only $10 more. Each evening is themed and children will enjoy a Gingerbread House contest, ice skating, cookie baking, ice sculptures and much, much more. For more information and to make a reservation, please call (208) 622-2009 or email ssummers@sunvalley.com. Extended hours are also available upon request for an additional charge.

The holiday season in Sun Valley is full of music, food and fun surprises for every age

Since this only gets us through Christmas Day, please check back for more information about New Year's celebrations, including a special Kid's Party, Family Skate Night and the always-popular Bubbly Bash.

The season is approaching fast and it looks like it will be one to remember! Ho, ho, ho!



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