MiCHill Note: This article was originally published in 2010. Many of the events listed below occur every year, and the trees are an annual tradition, but be sure to check out the dates and the costs before showing up.
I am completely in the Christmas spirit now (I was already crazed then we got our wintry weather, so I am a bit of bear to be around right now, MERRY CHRISTMAS)! So when I read that Carolina Inn hosts an annual “Twelve Days of Christmas” event all December long, I was game to check it out. I drug Stacey “S’Rich” along with me.
I had seen this as a recommended adventure for kids, but if you recall Stace & I both have very active toddler boys. The Carolina Inn’s display is an artistic variation of the Twelve Days of Christmas by North Carolina artists. It is absolutely beautiful and creative, but I have to be honest and say it did not hold our kids’ interest. They wanted large Christmas trees with lights and stars and Santas. I would recommend this for older children who can appreciate the ingenuity and uniqueness of the pieces.
The large sand castle out in front of the Inn did hold some interest for our little ones, though, which gives me hope that the Annual Gingerbread Competition, which opens and is on display starting December 11th, will be more entertaining for my toddler.
But really never fear, because outside of the Twelve Days of Christmas displays, the Carolina Inn gives some good opportunities for families to celebrate:
Every Saturday from 8:30 -10:30 am they offer a Breakfast with Santa. It is $15 for kids 3-12, $20 for adults, kids under 3 are free. Reservations are required, but it is open seating.
But why have breakfast when you can have Brunch with Santa! On Sundays from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm there is a whole event. “Enjoy a festive Carolina Inn brunch and watch the magic of the holiday season come alive. Magicians and face painters will be on hand to entertain everyone. Each child is welcome to sit on Santa’s lap and will receive a holiday Beanie Baby.” This is more expensive with $20 for kids 3-12, $25 for adults but, again, kids under 3 are free. Reservations required.
Another event that sounds cute is coming up. This is the Teddy Bear Tea with The Triangle Youth Ballet. “Come enjoy a fun-filled Teddy Bear Tea Party this holiday season with dancers from the Triangle Youth Ballet. Each table will have their own special character joining them for the afternoon. Live entertainment, story time and photo opportunities abound. Bring your camera and your favorite Teddy Bear.” Reservations required. Everyone 3 and up is $25, kids under 3 are free.
If you want to get your own professional-chef-in-the-making going they are hosting a Make Your Own Gingerbread House. This isn’t cheap at $45 per child. But it begins with storytelling and magic. Then kids assemble and decorate their own gingerbread house, and of course they get to take it home with them. Carolina Inn provides all the goodies including aprons and hats (also to take home). At this event, they will announce the winner of the gingerbread house competition. Reservations required.
The event that tickles me the most, though, is the Children’s Etiquette Luncheon on December 21st 11:30am – 1:30pm. Eureka!! When will they offer this for 2 year olds, because I could really do without dinner being all over my floor every night. “A five-course dining tutorial, taught by certified etiquette and protocol professional, Cecilia Budd Grimes. Children 8-12 will learn dining do’s and don’ts. Each child will receive a certificate and The Little Book of Etiquette at the graduation ceremony following lunch. Sunday dress code applies; jackets for boys (ties not required).” $38 per child, limited seating, reservations required.
There are also adult events that look entertaining, but that would be for a different blogger to get into. You can check it all out at the link below.
I also have to give a shout-out to the staff at Carolina Inn. The valets let both of us park for free in the private Carolina Inn lot when we mentioned that we were there to look at the holiday decorations.
So if I could sum up this blog: there are plenty of events and fun things to do at the Carolina Inn to get you into the holiday spirit, check out the link below. And you can view the Twelve Days of Christmas event while you are strolling around the festive historic inn.
The Carolina Inn
211 Pittsboro Street