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Alex Sventeckis
Becca Schmiegel
Cherie Lowe
Chris Gahl
Christine Zetzl
Dawn Olsen
Jeff Robinson
Jessica Young
Katy Mann
Lara Neal
Larry Pranger
Maeve Wangler
Marissa Renaldi
Morgan Snyder
Nate Swick
Seth Johnson
Sierra Holmes
Victoria Davis
Guest

Festival of Trees at the Indiana Historical Society

DECEMBER 19, 2019

Unbelievably, the Indiana Historical Society’s Festival of Trees in downtown Indy gets bigger and better every year. This year is no exception! With close to 100 beautifully decorated trees and a variety of activities for kids and adults, it’s easy to see why Festival of Trees is a tradition that everyone can enjoy. 

The Trees and Competition

Organizations and businesses sponsor and decorate these completely over-the-top trees as a competitive fundraiser for the nonprofit historical society. Past competitors have included upside down trees and trees made out of wine bottles. When you enter the building, you’ll be given a ballot to vote on your three favorites. Our family enjoys debating which trees should win our votes.   

The Activities

As if walking in a winter wonderland isn’t enough fun, there are many other activities to keep the whole family occupied:

  • Hunt for Hoosier Buddy, the society’s Elf on the Shelf. If you find him, tell the front desk where he is (don’t touch him!), and you’ll receive a small prize. 
  • Visit the living exhibits within the museum to learn about Indiana’s fascinating history.
  • Sing Christmas carols in the Cole Porter Room. The player piano is a real treat! 
  • On Saturdays, participate in special crafts and activities. 
  • Rumor has it that Santa loves to check out the trees as well, so look for him on the weekends. He may even stop to read you a story! 
  • Check out the list of special programs and offerings throughout the season that will make your date night or family outing even more special.
  • Keep your eye out for 10 Wihnachtzgurke (pickle ornaments) hidden in trees.
  • Try on the pink bunny suits and Ralphie glasses and pose for Instagrammable pics in the A Christmas Story area of the lobby (use #FOTIndy on Insta). 

The easy location, extended hours, and affordable price (children under 5 and teachers with ID are free) make this attraction special for Hoosiers and visitors alike. Don’t miss it!


Jessica Young is an English teacher and freelance writer. She enjoys playing euchre, rolling around in her minivan, and going on adventures with her husband and two young sons. As a proud Indy native, Jessica loves telling others about these exciting adventures so that their families can enjoy them as well. You can read all about her family’s adventures on their blog, Circle City Adventure Kids.