Each year Janesville, Wisconsin’s Great Outside draws visitors from around the region to enjoy heart-warming holiday cheer at fun events like the Holiday Light Show, Janesville’s Jolly Jingle and more than 60 others. Janesville’s family-friendly atmosphere, affordability and convenient  location make it simple for you to visit. We are less than 2 hours from Chicago and Milwaukee, and less than an hour from Rockford and Madison, with easy access off of I-39/90. Here are a few of our top holiday suggestions that are sure to delight you this holiday season!

Photos by Full Spectrum Photography

1. Take in the Incredible Beauty of Rotary Botanical Gardens’ Holiday Light Show Awaken your holiday spirit as you stroll through the majestic beauty of this awe-inspiring  display that features OVER ONE MILLION DAZZLING LIGHTS and other fun activities on select nights. The event runs November 25 – 27, December 1 – 4, 8 – 11, 15 – 23, 26 – 30, 4:30 PM – 8:30 PM, lights out at 9 PM. Tickets may be purchased online. (Free Parking & Shuttle). More info

2. Experience Three Days of Fun at Janesville’s Jolly Jingle Ring in the holiday season with Janesville’s Jolly Jingle, a festive weekend held December 2 – 4 at various locations in Janesville’s vibrant downtown. This merry holiday festival features more than 30 events and activities over 3 days, and includes dazzling fireworks, a lighted parade, Holiday Tree Show, Janesville Jolly Jog, Jingle Mingle, Holiday Light Show, tree lighting, luminary walk, decorated holiday windows, ice skating with Santa, live theater, kids activities, shopping and dining.  Best of all many activities are free or low cost! More info

3. Holiday Tree Show Discover the magic as you stroll the beautiful Lincoln-Tallman House. With more than 100 trees and decorations throughout the historic mansion, each is uniquely bejeweled by a local business, nonprofit or family. From nostalgic to patriotic, opulent to handmade, each tree has been decorated with loving imagination at this year’s show – larger and more joyous than ever before! Open-house-style tours are ideal for adults and children alike. Tickets are available online and at the door and may be used on any tour day. Take your time and enjoy the warm glow of more than 50,000 lights. New this year, tour-goers are welcome to stop in for a cup of cheer in the festively decorated servants’ quarters on Thursdays and Friday, 5 PM – 7 PM. Cash bar. Tour the Holiday Tree Show at the Lincoln-Tallman House on select dates: November 25 – 27, December 1 – 4, 8 – 11, 15 – 18, 22 – 23 and 26 – 30. Thursdays & Fridays, 3 PM – 7 PM, Saturdays & Sundays 12 PM – 4 PM. On December 26 –  30  hours are 3 PM – 7 PM. Closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Also check out the outdoor edition of the Holiday Tree Show, with lighted and decorated trees surrounding the Lincoln-Tallman House. Walk or drive through any time, day or night, no charge, November 25 through December 30.  More info

4. Enjoy a Show at the Janesville Performing Arts Center of Elf the Musical Experience a live performance of Elf the Musical on the stage of the historic and lovely Janesville Performing Arts Center. Based on the beloved holiday film, this hilarious fish-out-of-water comedy follows Buddy the Elf in his quest to find his true identity. Performance times are: Friday, December 2 at 7:30 PM; Saturday, December 3 and Sunday, December 4 at 2:00 PM; Friday December 9 and Saturday, December 10 at 7:30 PM; and Sunday, December 11 at 2:00 PM.  Note: The Friday, December 9 performance of Elf The Musical will be ASL Interpreted thanks to a partnership with UW-Milwaukee Interpreter Training Program. Get your tickets in advance. (Free Parking). More info

5. Holiday Magic Can Be Found When You, Shop, Dine and Explore in Janesville’s Festive Downtown Whether you’re in search of unique shopping, live entertainment, fun events, public art, self-guided historic tours, exceptional dining, or craft brewed beer, Janesville’s downtown is a great place to visit. Hot tip: check out The Sugar Exchange and Bodacious Brew for delicious holiday sweet treats or drafthouse, Genisa Wine Bar and Lark for exceptional dining and cocktails. More info

6. Create Fun Holiday Memories with Family and Friends at an Exciting Janesville Jets Game Come on out to the Janesville Ice Arena and cheer on the Janesville Jets as they deliver what is sure to be exciting hockey action! The Jets are taking fun family entertainment to an all new high with game day promotions, giveaways, contests, and more. More info

Check out our complete calendar of events to learn about the dozens of  festive holiday events held in the Janesville area during this merry season. To make the most of your visit consider staying overnight at one of our comfortable and welcoming lodging facilities which includes options at a bed & breakfast located in the heart of our historic districts. For more information, give us a call at (800) 487-2757. Our staff is happy to assist you!

Date Posted | November 01, 2022