Things will certainly look different this holiday season, but some traditions, like Moody Gardens’ Holiday in the Gardens extravaganza, will still be possible. Now in its 19th year, the Galveston tourist destination’s annual Christmas event kicks off this weekend and will run all the way through January 2.

And while the park’s limited attendance to 75-percent capacity, organizers are still expecting a good turnout, says Jerri Hamachek, Moody Gardens’ marketing director. “This holiday, we are taking the necessary precautions to ensure that guests are wearing masks and will be able to social distance while enjoying our holiday attractions.”

While the wintery Ice Land won’t be one of this year’s destinations (the ice-carving team couldn’t make it from China, Hamachek says), there’ll still be a lot to enjoy, including the giant Arctic Slide; a 4D adaptation of beloved stop-motion classic Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, as well as other 3D holiday film screenings; and even Breakfast with Santa. And who can forget the popular Festival of Lights walking trail, where guests can enjoy a one-mile trail filled with two million lights, animated displays, and the eye-catching, four-story digital dancing Tree of Light.

Sure, 2020’s been pretty darn dreary, but a trip to Holiday in the Gardens will surely leave you much more cheery (we know, that's a tad on the nose, just like Rudolph).

Nov 21–Jan 2. From $20. Moody Gardens, 1 Hope Blvd, Galveston. 409-683-4256. More info and tickets at

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