Expanded Christmas Village Returns to Inner Harbor on Thanksgiving

| November 6, 2023 | 0 Comments

Christmas Village in Baltimore press release: 

Christmas Village in Baltimore will return to Inner Harbor to celebrate its 10th Anniversary Season with new surprises and more Christmas cheer!  For 2023, look for the largest footprint ever, a record number of vendors, a new outdoor winter bar, the addition of Christmas cocktails, five new sausages, new vegan options, later evening hours and a new location for the Christmas Village Tree. Charm City’s beloved holiday tradition is back to transform West Shore Park (501 Light Street) into a traditional, authentic indoor and outdoor German Christmas Market from Thanksgiving Day through Christmas Eve, with previews on November 18th and 19th. Experience the magic of thousands of twinkling lights during later close times, until 8:00pm on Sunday through Thursday, and until 9:00pm on Friday and Saturday. Look for big holiday vibes with the 30-foot-tall Christmas Pyramid from the Ore Mountains, the 65-foot-tall illuminated Ferris Wheel, and the Christmas Village Carousel with horses and festive reindeer. Nearly 60 vendors will offer gifts for everyone on Santa’s shopping list. This year’s event boasts the most vendors in its history, with wooden booths expanding again along the Inner Harbor Promenade. Vendors will be located outside in traditional festively-decorated wooden huts, plus inside the giant heated festival tent. Famous German vendor Käthe Wohlfahrt will return with an array of exquisite glass ornaments, nutcrackers, pyramids and limited-edition holiday decorations. Other highlights will include a large selection of Glühwein (mulled wine), the warm glow of the open-air Bratwurst Grill, an expansive outdoor seating area, the Hofbräu Beer Garden, appearances by Gingy the Gingerbread Man, theme weekends with live entertainment, and the opening ceremony with the German Christkind. Foodies will find Raclette Cheese sandwiches, bacon on a stick, wine tastings, boozy pudding, expanded brat selections and new vegan options. For more information about Christmas Village and the Holiday District, follow @bmorechristmas on social media and visit www.baltimorechristmas.com.

“This time of year on the Baltimore Waterfront is truly magical,” said Nancy Schmalz, Project Manager of Christmas Village. “We are honored to be a cherished part of Charm City and are excited to expand this year, offering new vendor locations for our visitors to explore. Our team is proud to be part of such a great community and we are grateful for your continued support over the years. Food lovers can rejoice as we prepare to surprise your taste buds with delightful dishes. Our menu features juicy Bratwurst along with an expanded selection of sausages at the “Best of Wurst” booth, including new creations like spicy Bratwurst, Currywurst, Hofbräu Beer braised Brat, Weisswurst, and the Käse Krainer, as well as returning favorites such as potato pancakes, Raclette cheese sandwiches, and mouth-watering bacon on a stick! We can’t wait to share in the holiday spirit with you and raise a toast to the joy of the season with a warm mug of Glühwein. Thank you for being a part of our Christmas Village family.”

Christmas Village is situated in West Shore Park, right between the Maryland Science Center and the Baltimore Visitor Center. Follow the smell of gingerbread and fresh charcoal-grilled brats to the authentic wooden huts and grand heated tent which features a full menu of European food, sweets and drinks.

New food offerings this year will include an expanded selection of sausages in the new “Best of Wurst” booth, with five different sausages including new Weisswurst (made out of beef and served with a German Pretzel and sweet mustard), Currywurst (a typical German favorite served with German rye bread), new Hofbräu Beer braised Brat (cooked on the grill and then braised in beer with bell pepper onions, served with German rye bread and a side of Sauerkraut) and new Käse Krainer (lightly smoked red sausage that comes with savory Cheddar cheese morsels perfect for the cheese lovers).

Christmas Village will also debut Vegan Vurst Wednesdays with the first-ever mouthwatering vegan Bratwurst, every Wednesday from 5:00pm to 8:00pm. Vurst Wednesdays will be a new ticketed culinary experience, with some vegan brats available first come, first served for walk-ups too. This trial program was designed to test new vegan offerings for future years as Christmas Village continues to expand the food options at the market. Vegan brats will be cooked separately from meat offerings. Ready for a new perspective on sausages? Look for more information as the program launches in November.

For returning foods, look for German brats and smoked sausages at the German charcoal swivel grill, including the new spicy Bratwurst. For the ultimate cheese experience,  Raclette Cheese Stube is back featuring freshly melted Swiss cheese on a locally baked baguette, with optional prosciutto, salami, cornichons, Dijon mustard, and scallions as toppings. Other crowd favorites will include mouthwatering bacon on a stick, authentic German schnitzel and potato pancakes, traveling Belgian fries and much more.

For seating options, patrons will find extended outdoor seating on German Oktoberfest benches under the charming bistro lights where they can take in the view of the massive Glühwein Pyramid, the centerpiece of the entire Village.

For beverages, The Pyramid offers a range of authentic German mulled wines, including the traditional red Glühwein and flavored wines like Blueberry and White. Additional beverages at the Pyramid and throughout the Village will include Hot Cocoa, Irish Coffee, Hot Toddies and non-alcoholic spiced hot Kinder Punsch, plus of course cold Hofbräu beers on draft.

For tastings, wine enthusiasts should come ready to unwind and savor the taste of perfection at weekly wine tasting events in partnership with long time partner Boordy Vineyards! Tastings are every Thirsty Thursday (November 30th, December 7th, 14th and 21st) from 4:00pm to 8:00pm. They are perfect for the wine novice to the wine connoisseur – and those looking for a charming evening out (including a date night). Tickets will soon go on sale for the 2023 season. Stay tuned for social media for early bird specials!

New for 2023, visitors will experience a new level of “Wunder” (wonder) for cocktail lovers. This year, Christmas Village will debut the Winter Wunder Bar featuring alpine ski hut vibes and the Village’s first-ever menu of signature holiday cocktails and frozen slushies. After the popular slushies at Wine Village’s debut in spring, Christmas Village itself will introduce a whole new menu collection with hot, cold and frozen favorites that are both delicious and picturesque. Winter Wunder Bar will be located outdoors next to the Käthe Wohlfahrt Tent and the Christmas Village Carousel.

For family fun, look for the return of the Village’s largest attractions that are sure to bring a smile to kids and adults of all ages! The charming old-school Christmas Village Carousel brings with it horses, reindeer and whimsical lights for trips round-and-round. The 65-foot-tall Christmas Village Ferris Wheel will again offer breathtaking birds-eye views over the busy holiday festivities and stunning views of the water. The Christmas Village Tree will be back – but in a surprise new location at Rash Field Park. Other family-friendly activities including appearances by Gingy the Gingerbread Man, family-friendly vendors with gifts for the kids, and surprises yet to be announced.

For special events, save the date for the following family-friendly programs:

Christmas Village Tree Lighting Ceremony
Saturday, November 18th, 4:15pm
Look for music and carols, a countdown to light the tree and more!

Christmas Village Christkind Ceremony
Saturday, November 25th, 4:00pm
Welcome the Christkind as she arrives by water, walk the market with her and hear her famous prologue, and watch for little treats for the kids!

* German American Weekend
Saturday, December 2nd, starting 12:00pm, and Sunday, 3rd, starting 2:00pm
Experience German culture and traditions and compete in a German Game contest which includes popular Oktoberfest-style competitions such as Bierstein lifting (‘Bierkrugstemmen’), a Bratwurst Eating Contest, and Brezelschnappen.

* Family Weekend
Saturday, December 9th, starting 12:00pm, and Sunday, 10th, starting 12:00pm
Enjoy an entire day loaded with kids’ activities from Potato Sack Races and Cornhole to Egg and Spoon Races. Snap a picture with our mascot Gingy and take a ride on our carousel!

* Gingy the Gingerbread Man’s 10th Birthday Bash
Saturday, December 16th, 12:00pm
Unwrapping ceremony, cake-cutting, festive balloons, birthday games, more!

For shopping, visitors should come prepared to find something for everyone on Santa’s list, as nearly 60 local and international vendors and merchants will offer toys, apparel, jewelry, decorations, home decor, artwork and so much more. Among the new stores that can be found at the Christmas Village this year are businesses like Chocoidea, known for their exclusive handmade chocolate figures with great attention to detail, Lucky Bat Paper Co., a small Baltimore-based business that creates colorful and happy illustrated paper goods, Everlands Everything LLC, with their microgreens, and Wildry, with their one-of-a-kind, beautiful, and sustainable floral art and goods. The famous German vendor, Käthe Wohlfahrt, will also be returning with thousands of ornaments, pyramids, and limited-edition holiday decorations. This shopping feature is expected to draw shoppers from all over the East Coast to this unique holiday pop-up shop, which is run by one of Germany’s most renowned and beloved Christmas specialists!

For furry companions, well-behaved leashed dogs are welcome to visit Christmas Village both outside and inside most of the giant heated tent. Discover the local Maryland based kitchen My Canine Cucina and their specially prepared, natural, and wholesome dog food and treats, made with locally sourced ingredients from Harford County and surrounding areas. Look for additional dog-oriented vendors to also be announced. Plus, watch for a roster of dog events with local partners coming soon.

For admission, the outdoor area of Christmas Village is always free to visit and experience.  Admission to the heated festival tent is free on November 18th and 19th for Preview Weekend and all weekdays. For the remaining weekends, tickets to the festival tent are five dollars for adults 18 and over, while kids under 18 are free. All purchased tickets act as a holiday season pass, allowing visitors to return anytime throughout the season without paying admission again.

“We are incredibly grateful for the continuous growth of our event. Christmas Village welcomes so many returning visitors, who come to indulge in the shopping, food, mulled wine, and decorations,” said Schmalz. “With tickets serving as a season pass, visitors can easily return and be a part of this holiday tradition, which originated in my home country. The Christmas Village is a symbol of the holiday season, and our goal is to share this tradition with as many families as possible. This is our heartfelt gift to our loyal families and fans, as well as new visitors seeking to create unforgettable memories.”

Christmas Village dates and hours for the 2023 season are listed below:

Preview Weekend: Saturday, November 18th and Sunday, November 19th
First Day: Thursday, November 23rd (Thanksgiving)
Last Day: Sunday, December 24th (Christmas Eve)
Closed: November 20th, 21st, 22nd, 27th, 28th, December 4th, 5th, 11th, 12th


Sunday to Thursday, 12:00pm to 8:00pm
Friday to Saturday, 12:00pm to 9:00pm
Thanksgiving Day, 12:00pm to 5:00pm
Christmas Eve, 12:00pm to 5:00pm

For more information about Christmas Village, and to spread early holiday cheer, follow @bmorechristmas on Instagram and our TikTok channel, like Christmas Village in Baltimore on Facebook, and visit www.baltimorechristmas.com. Final vendor lists, food and drink menus, themed weekends and special event details, stay tuned to the website in mid-November.


Baltimore‘s Christmas Village, now in its tenth season, is a leading partner in the Holiday District along with Waterfront Partnership, Visit Baltimore and others. Charm City’s Holiday District will provide visitors from the Baltimore and D.C. metro areas with shopping, entertainment, and family fun activities. The district will stretch from the Christmas Village Tree at Rash Field Park, to Christmas Village proper in West Shore Park and along the promenade, to downtown Inner Harbor, including the Inner Harbor Ice Rink, and nearby attractions, shopping destinations, and museums.

Come and enjoy the festive holiday atmosphere with the beautiful Christmas Tree, thousands of twinkling lights, live music, children’s activities, and Christmas gifts. Shop for high-quality international and local gifts and decorations. Warm up with a glass of warm Glühwein (mulled wine) or hot chocolate while enjoying a wide variety of European food and drinks. Sing along to holiday tunes from around the world. Go for a spin on the ice, add some spice to a date night, and teach your children how to glide on the ice. Bring the whole family, make some memories, and celebrate the most festive holiday destination in Baltimore.

Participants in the Holiday District include but are not limited to:
Christmas Village in Baltimore
Waterfront Partnership
Inner Harbor Ice Rink
Visit Baltimore
And others

The holiday season in the Holiday District begins with the kick-off and opening of the Inner Harbor Ice Rink by Waterfront Partnership (stay tuned for dates from Waterfront Partnership), followed by the Christmas Village Preview Weekend on Saturday, November 18th and Sunday, November 19th, and the Christmas Village Tree Lighting on November 18th at 4:15pm.

Photo courtesy of Christmas Village

Photo courtesy of Christina Kalff

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News releases from various sources around South Baltimore.