Passionate About Providence
and the Moms Who Live Here

Happy Holidays: the Winter Festival at Roger Williams Park Zoo!

We are so grateful that through our partnership with Roger Williams Park Zoo, we can share with our families all about the Winter Festival!
Winter Festival Roger Williams Park Zoo Providence Moms Blog

Ah, December. For so many reasons, it truly is a magical month. A time for a celebration of lights, festive music, jolly sentiment, sugar plum fairies, magic train rides, and copious amounts of hot chocolate with marshmallows. But, if you’re anything like me, December conjures up its fair amount of stress, tension, and mounting credit card debt. Try as I may, sometimes it’s hard to recreate the thrill of anticipation or feel like I can truly be in the moment during the holidays season.

For adults like me looking to recapture some of that magic back and detach from the commercialized stress of the holidays, Roger Williams Park Zoo has created the perfect event to get in the holiday spirit and kick off December with festive cheer alongside our children. This Saturday, December 2nd, Roger Williams Park Zoo is hosting its Winter Festival at the Carousel Village. Beginning at noon and ending at 8pm, families have the opportunity to ride the carousel, take a ride on the express train, listen and sing along to holiday music, grab some food from a variety of food carts, be enchanted by ice carving demonstrations, watch a special performance by Festival Ballet, chat with the Providence Mounted Police, and of course, visit with Santa (but time it right; Santa needs a break to check in with the North Pole from 3 to 4pm!)

The event is designed with every age group in mind. Younger children will have plenty of opportunities to have fun and explore in the early hours of the afternoon, whereas older children will delight in the holiday light display beginning at 5pm or in sharing a family horse drawn hayride from 4pm to 8pm.

Families of nature lovers will want to make sure to stop by the Botanical Garden between 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. Not only is the garden decorated with over 500 poinsettias, children and adults will have the chance to make a pinecone bird feeder and participate in a scavenger hunt!  Additionally, the Museum of Natural History & Planetarium is hosting its Winter Wonderland Fun. Beginning at 1pm, the museum will have School of Rock, an acoustic music performance; at 2pm, a viewing of the brand new Winter Sky Views Planetarium Show for $3 a ticket, and another special performance by School of Rock in the planetarium from 2:45-3:45pm.  (Keep in mind that little ones under the age of 4 are not admitted into the Planetarium, so plan accordingly! They may, however, join in the museum fun with special quests and crafts that are included in the museum admission price).

Best of all, Roger Williams Park Zoo understands the financial pressures of the holiday season. Admission to the Winter Festival is free (although minimal fees ranging from $2-$5 apply to the horse drawn hayride, visit with Santa, train ride, and carousel ride). And to help families get around the park with ease, parking is free in the Roger Williams Park Zoo parking lots, and the RIPTA trolley is available throughout the event from noon to 8:00 pm to offer free rides to the Carousel.  

Truly designed with something for everyone in mind, the Winter Festival at Roger Williams Park Zoo offers parents and children a chance to connect in the joys of the holiday season. So kick off December by recapturing winter delights at RWPZ!

For more information on all the festivities, please visit

To help families get into the winter and holiday spirit, Roger Williams Park Zoo is giving away a family 4 pack of tickets!  Don’t forget to head over to our Facebook page for your chance to enter!

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