In these parts Santa has been known to travel via pirogue pulled by a troupe of friendly alligators. When his watercraft pulls up to the banks of Lake Pontchartrain to visit the Northshore, he makes a big splash.
Santa’s initial stop on the Northshore is on December 7, first in Madisonville for Merry Madisonville and then Mandeville, by boat, for the Winter on the Water boat parade. He also makes a grand entrance via horse and buggy on December 14 at the Folsom Horse and Wagon Christmas Parade and in Lacombe for Lacombe’s Christmas Celebration.
Holiday strollers will revel in the holiday spirit as they meander through the streets of Old Mandeville at the lakefront town’s annual Sips of the Season on December 6. The event is modeled after the German Christkindlmarkt tradition in which revelers wandered the town squares with mugs of warm, spiced wine called gluhwein. Purchase a mug in advance (they sell out quickly) at participating shops and join in the fun. Shoppers enjoy special sales, warm cider and signature spirits from our local shopkeepers.
On December 8, Covington Heritage Foundation presents its History and Holly Home Tour with wine tasting along the pedestrian-friendly tour, holiday music, and festively adorned homes in a quaint Covington neighborhood.
Join Santa on a visit to yesteryear on December 14 as you wind through the leafy streets of Old Mandeville enjoying carols sung by local musicians and choirs enlivening the spirit for the city’s annual “A Christmas Past” Festival. An old-fashioned holiday atmosphere sets the backdrop for offerings of arts and crafts, jewelry, seasonal food and beverages, a Children’s Village, and train rides.
Enjoy Teatime with Santa at the Southern Hotel, The English Tea Room, or Maison Lafitte. Enjoy a holiday feast, holiday craftmaking, cookie decorating, visits with Santa and train rides as you support the Youth Service Bureau at Your Santa Breakfast. You can also catch up with Santa over story readings and hot chocolate at the Cajun Christmas at Big Branch, or meet the jolly elf and his reindeer while you dine at Annadele’s Plantation Restaurant’s Reindeer Romp.
St. Tammany lights up the parish with more than the shimmer of twinkling lights sprinkled along the streets, Tammany Trace trailheads, and parks of St. Tammany Parish. Bring the entire family to Covington Trailhead to experience the magic of Christmas with Candlelight Caroling on December 13 and Deck the Rails on December 14. And for spectacular light displays, attend Deck the Park with Pyrotechnics at Coquille Parks & Recreation on December 21.
You’ll find lots of family fun in Olde Towne Slidell with Slidell’s Bayou Christmas in Heritage Park December 18-23, including a free Christmas movie screening on December 20, and the Krewe of Kringle Community Parade on December 7. This old-fashioned Christmas parade delights with decorated golf carts, holiday costumes and Santa and Mrs. Claus, as it winds from City Hall to Griffith Park for the annual lighting of the Christmas tree and Christmas Under the Stars.
Reprinted from the Explore the Northshore Visitor Guide produced by the St. Tammany Parish Tourist & Convention Commission. For more ways to celebrate the season, visit LouisianaNorthshore.com/holiday.