Six Ways to Save on Tickets to Stone Mountain Christmas

Meet Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer at Stone Mountain Christmas

Meet Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer at Stone Mountain Christmas. Photo courtesy Stone Mountain.

Every year we anxiously await the start of the holiday season with Stone Mountain Christmas. It gives us an opportunity to kick-start our festivities and relish what means most to us this season: the sparkle of magic in our children’s eyes. While I highly recommend splurging on Stone Mountain Christmas, sometimes families have to pinch pennies during gift-giving season. That is why I am sharing six ways to save on tickets to Stone Mountain Christmas/Snow Mountain.

Take pictures with the Snow Angel at Stone Mountain Christmas.

Take pictures with the Snow Angel at Stone Mountain Christmas. Photo courtesy Stone Mountain.

Atlanta Evergreen Marriott Conference Resort Christmas Package. With prices starting as low as $209 per night, staying overnight is a treat but not a splurge! The Christmas Package includes overnight accommodations, breakfast at the restaurant, passes to Stone Mountain Christmas and access to the heated pools.

Groupon. For the next two weeks (or as supplies last), Groupon is offering a 32% discount on tickets to Stone Mountain Christmas!

Snow Mountain & Christmas Combo Pass. This includes two hours at Snow Mountain, plus all the celebrations of Stone Mountain Christmas. You can do both in the same day, or spread the fun over the season.

Free meal and unlimited drinks. Purchase your Adventure Pass online and get a free meal from Marketplace and unlimited drink refills.

Save on an Adventure Pass. If you’ll be eating off-site, then consider purchasing the Adventure Pass online. It doesn’t include the meal voucher, but can still save you $5.

Snow Mountain Pass. If you want to skip Stone Mountain Christmas but still want to play in the snow, then grab the Snow Mountain-only pass.

You can read more here about why Stone Mountain Christmas is special to us, or find over 150 additional Christmas events in Atlanta!

And don’t miss our other fun Christmas articles:

LesliLesli is the Georgia’s official Family Explorer and the owner of 365AtlantaFamily, which offers a daily dose of inspiration for metro-area families. Click here for more Family content from Lesli.

Top 5 Holiday Activities in Georgia’s Lake Country

christmas photos - elves

Georgia’s Lake Country is wrapped with traditional and delightful holiday events. From concerts and caroling to ice skating and Santa sightings, Greensboro, Madison, Eatonton and Milledgeville have you covered this holiday season.

1.) Sing Christmas carols, or….
Let others sing them! On December 2, the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center will host the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for a holiday concert.

Then on December 4, Georgia College’s Music Department presents a Holiday Concert at Russell Auditorium in #Milledgeville.

Ritz-Carlton Ice Skating

Go ice skating at the Ritz-Carlton in Greensboro Nov. 25, 2015-Jan. 3, 2016.

2.) Go ice skating — the perfect way to get holiday spirit!
The Ritz-Carlton in #Greensboro will host its annual outdoor ice skating rink at the Pavilion. The rink opens November 25 and lasts until January 3. All the fun is topped off with hot cocoa! It’s an event that’s a blast for the whole family!

Madison Holiday Tour of Homes

Tour historic homes dressed up for the holidays in Madison Dec. 3-5, 3015.

3.) Take a tour of historic homes and sites.
December 3-5, step into #Madison’s Town & Country Holiday Tour of Homes. This event is one that you do not want to miss.

The Old Governor’s Mansion in Milledgeville will be open November 21-25 and then December 1-23. The mansion will be transformed into a winter wonderland!

Stepback, Georgia, in #Eatonton is a recreation of a 1900s community. Join the Pierce family on December 12 to “step back” into how Christmas was celebrated over 100 years ago!

Santa and Mrs. Claus in Milledgeville's Christmas Parade

See Milledgeville’s Christmas Parade Dec. 5, 2015

4.) Of course, See Santa!
Milledgeville welcomes #Santa with a parade down Main Street. This year’s parade is on December 5, and the theme is Sounds of the Season. Enjoy bands, festive floats and Santa!

On December 13, Crooked Pines Farm is bringing back “Santa & Sweets.” This event will wow your kids! Children will decorate cookies and have a one-on-one with Santa himself! Parents will receive a thumb drive with all of the photos of your children.

5.) Shop til you drop!
Eatonton hosts Christmas in the Briar Patch on December 5 from 3-6 p.m. Arts and crafts vendors will line the courthouse lawn. This is the perfect place to get your holiday shopping done! Stick around for “Light up the Night Christmas Parade” starting at 6 p.m. where Eatonton will welcome Santa to the square for free pictures with Santa!

For more information on these events, contact Maddie Atkinson with Georgia’s Lake Country.

Maddie AtkinsonMaddie Atkinson is a 2014 graduate from Georgia College in Milledgeville. After falling in love with Middle Georgia, Maddie decided to find a job there. After landing the tourism, marketing & special events position with the Eatonton-Putnam Chamber of Commerce, she began working actively on Georgia’s Lake Country marketing committee. She has since bought a house in Lake Country with her husband and two children.

Exploring Georgia’s National Battlefields

Cannon at Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park

Cannon at Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park. Photo by Candy Cook.

Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park preserves the history of the Civil War battles for Chickamauga & Chattanooga, as well as 12,000 years of Indian presence in the area. The park features a self-guided driving tour of the battlefield, archeaological sites, stunning monuments, and a variety of trails. In fact, there are more than 50 miles of trails designated for hiking or horseback riding throughout the park.

Exploring Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park by foot

Exploring Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park by foot. Photo by Candy Cook.

Exploring the park by foot is a great way to experience the open fields and shaded paths that lead to creek crossings, historical tablets, memorials and scenic vistas. The National Park Service leads guided interpreted hikes and offers informational resources for visitors to combine trails into fun learning experiences.

Trail to the top of Kennesaw Mountain

Trail to the top of Kennesaw Mountain. Photo by Candy Cook.

Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, not far from Atlanta, offers 18 miles of interpretive trails exploring various historical sites and natural features on nearly 3,000 acres. A 35-minute movie and expanded museum overview the military campaign, civilian life, and other aspects of the time. The trails at Kennesaw offer a variety of terrain from rolling hills to wooded climbs with boulders and rock outcroppings. Many trails intersect and are often combined by hikers customizing their experience. The mile-long Kennesaw Mountain Trail leads visitors to a distant view of Atlanta from the top of the mountain.

The view from Little Kennesaw Mountain

The view from Little Kennesaw Mountain. Photo by Candy Cook.

The hike is extended by continuing on the Little Kennesaw Mountain Trail, which leads to a lower elevation peak and enchanting rock gardens with large boulders.

candycookCandy is Georgia’s official Outdoor Explorer and the author of the blog “Happy Trails Wild Tales.” Click here for more Outdoor content from Candy.

My 5 Favorite Turkey Day Treats

PeachDish Thanksgiving Holiday Meal kit.

PeachDish Thanksgiving Holiday Meal kit. Photo courtesy PeachDish.

PeachDish Box. Thanks to PeachDish, you can host Turkey Day dinner without having to shop or prep (or really cook). Order a Thanksgiving PeachDish box, and you’ll receive all the ingredients you’ll need to roast your turkey (already brined), your sides (like Pecan & Apple Dressing), and even easy-to-make cream biscuits! The shopping and most of the prep work is done. You get to do the fun part: cook, eat and enjoy dinner with your family and friends. Be sure and place your order by Saturday, November 21 to receive your PeachDish box in time for Thanksgiving.

Dekalb Farmers Market. For those of you who love to cook, this market is the place for you. You can pick up everything you need to make Thanksgiving dinner with just one stop! Dekalb Farmers Market offers a vast selection of exotic and ethnic fruit, vegetables, fresh seafood, organic meats and poultry (like naturally raised turkeys), baked goods, an amazing cheese counter, and even fresh flowers for your table’s centerpiece. I always pick up some freshly roasted and ground coffee beans for a special Thanksgiving breakfast treat.


Chef Sonya Jones’ Sweet Potato Cheesecake

Sweet Auburn Bread Company. There are so many freshly baked treats to choose from — like Lemon Pound Cake, Pecan Pie, and Old Fashioned Tea Cookies — that it’s hard to pick just one. But if I had to, it would be Chef Sonya Jones’ rich and creamy Sweet Potato Cheesecake. Made with fresh, local ingredients and cooked to perfection, this is a dessert worth giving thanks for — and it’s former President Bill Clinton’s favorite dessert.

Red Apple Barn. Enjoy a visit with your family to the Red Apple Barn near Ellijay in the North Georgia Mountains. While you’re there, you can pick your own apples and a bottle of fresh apple cider from their farm store. When you get home, you can turn those apples into pie and that cider into Hot Mulled Cider (recipe below), a warm and fragrant after-Thanksgiving dinner drink.

13th Colony Distillery

13th Colony Distillery

13th Colony Distillery offers a wide array of handcrafted spirits. My favorite is their Southern Bourbon Whiskey — it has a velvety smooth finish. Located in Americus, Georgia, Thirteenth Colony Distillery prides itself on producing unique, small-batch spirits at a friendly price. I suggest adding a splash to your apple cider for a more festive flavor.

Mulled Cider
Yields 6 servings

1 quart apple cider
1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
1 fresh lemon, cut in quarters
1 fresh orange, cut in quarters
2 cinnamon sticks
pinch of allspice
2 whole cloves
1 cup spiced rum

6 whole star anise

1. Combine apple cider, ginger, lemon, orange, cinnamon sticks, allspice, and cloves in a stainless steel saucepan.
2. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil.
3. Reduce heat and simmer on low for 15 minutes.
4. Strain mixture, add the spiced rum and serve hot in mugs.
5. Garnish with star anise.


From Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent by Jennifer Hill Booker, © 2014 Jennifer Hill Booker, used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.

jennifer-hill-booker-1436890751-thumb-230-230-438-151-820-444-90Jennifer is Georgia’s official Culinary Explorer and the author of “Your Resident Gourmet,” full of innovative recipes, cooking trends and fun kitchen gadgets. Click here for more content from Jennifer.

4 Things You Didn’t Know You Could Do in Liberty County

Liberty County is halfway in between Savannah and the Golden Isles, making it a perfect day trip when you’re spending time at the coast.

1.)  Get in touch with nature. Visit the LeConte-Woodmanston Botanical Gardens and explore land that was once a swamp rice plantation owned by the first president of the University of California at Berkley and co-founder of the Sierra Club, Dr. Louis LeConte.

Fort Morris State Historic Site

Fort Morris State Historic Site

2.)  See British history. British history? In Liberty County? Yes. Fort Morris State Historic Site is the site of a 1779 battle between United States and British forces. After 45 days of fighting, the fort fell to the British. They have two festivals coming up: the “Come and Take It!” Revolutionary War Encampment on November 21 and A Colonial Christmas on December 5.

Jim Bacote shows off a sweetgrass basket at the Geechee Kunda Cultural Center in Riceboro.

Jim Bacote shows off a sweetgrass basket at the Geechee Kunda Cultural Center in Riceboro.

3.)  Head to the annual Sugar Cane Harvest & Crafts Show. The Geechee Kunda Cultural Center in Riceboro hosts the festival on November 28, 2015, celebrating sugar cane and the Geechee culture.

4.)  Take a tour of historic coastal Georgia. Explore the Historic Baptismal Trail as a self-guided experience, visit the historic homes of Flemington on a driving tour, or take in the Seabrook Village and Living History Tour.

Eileen is Georgia’s official Festival Explorer and the editor of Occupy My Family, the Atlanta area’s most comprehensive resource for family fun. Click here for more Festival content from Eileen.