A Visit to Crown Center Will Get You Into the Holiday Spirit

The fun starts tomorrow with Santa and the lighting of the Mayorโ€™s Christmas Tree

November 22, 2022

While your kids work on their lists for Santa, schedule a visit to Crown Center so you can make Christmas memories they will remember for years to come. There’s no better place to get into the holiday spirit than at Crown Center, whether that’s ice skating, shopping for gifts, looking at the lights, or taking in a holiday show. Kick off the holidays with special family activities on the day after Thanksgiving, or visit anytime to take in the sights and sounds of the season.

Start With A Magical, Charitable Tree

For 50 years Crown Center has decorated the Mayor’s Christmas Tree on Crown Center Square as a symbol of the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Fund, which assists Kansas City residents in need during the holidays. Just walking under the towering tree and playing on the oversized toys around its base make you feel like a kid again. 

The 100-foot-tall Douglas fir arrives at Crown Center in early November, after making a 2,000-mile road trip from the forests of Oregon to Kansas City. The Crown Center team works to re-assemble and decorate the tree throughout the month of November in preparation for the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting Event on Friday, Nov. 25.

Watch this fast-motion video to see how the Mayor’s Christmas Tree gets ready for the season:

Greet Santa as He Arrives at Crown Center

On the day after Thanksgiving, enjoy a festive day at Crown Center, where you can focus on spending time together as well as crossing gifts off your Christmas shopping list.

At 10 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 25, Santa Claus will arrive in front of the Crown Center Shops in a horse-drawn carriage to greet his eager fans. It’s the perfect way to keep the magic of Santa alive for little ones. 

Santa then makes his way to Santa’s Gingerbread Station, a train-themed area on Level 1 of the Crown Center Shops. Kids and families can share wish lists and have photos taken with Santa every day during shopping hours, up until 5 p.m. on Christmas Eve. A photographer is available onsite to take photos for a fee, or you may take your own. Admission is free.

Spend Quality Holiday Time Together

For the afternoon, reserve tickets to see A Charlie Brown Christmas at The Coterie Theatre or venture out on the ice to skate at Crown Center Ice Terrace (reservations are required and can be made up to six days in advance, so plan ahead). You can enjoy a meal or snacks from one of Crown Center’s many dining options, and stroll around shopping for gifts and stocking stuffers.

Be sure to pick up the 2022 Mayor’s Christmas Tree Ornament, made from the wood of last year’s tree, to help those in need in our community. Hanging this charitable ornament on your tree is the perfect way to remind your family of your Crown Center Christmas memories.

The ornament is called “Celebrating 50 Years” to commemorate Crown Center’s 50th year of hosting and decorating the Mayor’s Christmas Tree. The wooden ornament is designed and made in Kansas City by Hallmark Cards, Inc. and can be purchased at Crown Center Customer Service for $16.95 plus tax, with proceeds benefitting Kansas City people in need during the holidays.

Watch the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Light Up the Sky

At 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 25, the 100-foot-tall Mayor’s Christmas Tree – one of the nation’s tallest – will be the centerpiece for an illuminating holiday celebration. This year the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting Event will feature some new performances and surprises to entertain the crowd.

All ages will enjoy the live holiday music and jolly atmosphere of the evening. Kansas City, Mo., Mayor Quinton Lucas, Santa Claus, and a celebrity guest will flip the switch to light more than 30,000 white lights on the tree and across Crown Center Square, followed by a festive fireworks display. Admission is free. The lights and decorations at Crown Center will remain on display through Jan. 2.

To check out all of the live theater, shopping, dining, and entertainment options at Crown Center during the holiday season, visit