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Come out of the cold and into the warmth for Santa’s Big Arrival and the opening of Jolly Days: Winter Wonderland at The Children’s Museum!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Ladies and gentlemen, Santa and elves… start your engines! Santa is arriving at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis in an Indy Racing Experience two-seater IndyCar! 

Santa's Big ArrivalSanta will arrive at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis on Friday, Nov. 24, the morning after Thanksgiving Day. The festivities rev up at 9:00 a.m. when a special police escort will guide the way for Santa and sleigh. Ed Carpenter, driver and owner of the #20 Ed Carpenter Racing IndyCar will drive the Jolly Old Elf.

Guests are encouraged to arrive at 8:30 a.m. to purchase a treat or two from the Gingerbread Café, pick up a free cup of cozy cocoa on the plaza and chat with cheery elves before the big show! 

Join Zazzles the Elf in watching the stunt show by the “dare-dev-elves” to welcome Santa as he cruises into the plaza. Then, meet The Chorduroys inside for a holiday sing-along to usher Santa down the festive red carpet to the 47-foot long Yule Slide! One lucky member child will join Santa for the first Yule Slide ride, and once they both land, we’ll all celebrate the opening of Jolly Days Winter Wonderland!

Before you walk around the exhibit’s winter wonderland or take a trip down the Yule Slide, note the special opportunities that will be happening during this big event: 

Ed Carpenter Autograph Signing 10-11 a.m.
Meet Ed Carpenter, driver and owner of the #20 Ed Carpenter Racing IndyCar—and Santa’s chauffeur—on this festive day! Ed will be signing autographs on Level 2 on the Mezzanine for one hour during the holiday hustle and bustle of celebration. Don’t miss him before he races out of here! 

Gift Memberships 
Give a gift for all ages that lasts all year! A membership to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis lasts for a year—and the memories last a lifetime! Who knew a year of fun could fit into a stocking?  

Free Holiday Craft 8:30–10 a.m.
The tradition of ringing bells during winter holidays is thousands of years old. Bells make a happy sound and are enjoyed in “ringing out the old and ringing in the new” each season! Customize your bell with different colors of ribbon to make it your own unique instrument to celebrate the holidays.

The Museum Store Discount 8:30–10 a.m. on Nov. 24, 2017 only
Santa’s good little shoppers can save big bucks! The Museum Store will offer a 30 percent Black Friday discount on all purchases until 10 a.m.

A Visit from St. Nicholas, or the Night Before Christmas (live theater performances) 1–1:45 p.m. and 3–3:45 p.m.
On Christmas Eve 1822, Clement C. Moore’s house is not as quiet as a mouse—in fact, everyone is stirring! Three children await the arrival of St. Nicholas, and Cousin Harriet enlists them to copy their poem their father has just written, which she hopes to have published for all young people to enjoy. But Father, a distinguished professor, fears becoming known as “a poet for children” and burns the poem. At first heartbroken, the children unite to save the poem through a riotous enactment.

Jolly Days: Winter Wonderland will be open Nov. 24, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018. Families can visit Santa through Dec. 24, and while in the exhibit, participate in pretend fishing, ice-skating and holiday baking. There will also be a castle to climb and a magical globe that allows visitors to let it snow at the push of a button!

The museum offers free admission to good little girls and boys and their families on December 24, 2017. Please note the museum is open from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. on that day. Lastly, there will be plenty of programming happening during this festive time so that families can always experience something new: Earn your elf ears, participate in “snowball” fights, sing along with The Mistletoes, and talk to animated winter characters! See the programs happening the day of your visit on our online calendar

* Just a reminder that The Children’s Museum wants to provide plenty of opportunities for visiting children and families to enjoy the museum during the holidays and winter vacations. Although we are closed most Mondays during the winter, we will be open Monday, December 18, 2017 and Monday, January 1, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. We will be closed on Christmas Day, December 25th.

Jolly Days Winter Wonderland is presented by Meijer and supported by Barnes & Thornburg and F.A. Wilhelm Construction Co., Inc. 

A Visit from St. Nicholas, or the Night Before Christmas is: Presented by Christel DeHaan Family Foundation. 

December 2, 2017  Free Admission Day is: Presented by Target and Supported by Geico

The Dallara IndyCar Factory
The Dallara IndyCar Factory is an interactive Facility where the public can learn how IndyCars are designed and built! Everyone can have the opportunity to see and take photos with IndyCar Show cars, and even take a ride around town in a street legal two-seater IndyCar!