Ideas for winter fun

List of events and ideas for general fun to keep you busy when school isn’t

Around this time of the semester, burnout, abundant stress and precious little free time is a fact of life at Trinity, but it doesn’t hurt to start thinking about what you’re going to do with all that free time once Thanksgiving break starts or even when final exams end and winter break begins.

Here’s a list of a few events in chronological order:

Video Art Projection at Main Plaza
FREE — Various times after dark every Tuesday and Friday through Sunday
At night, “The Saga” by artist Xavier de Richemont covers the facade of San Fernando Cathedral, the oldest cathedral in Texas, which becomes full of dazzling and gorgeous lights. The piece shares the story of the Lone Star State through 24 minutes of images and rich textures. If ever you find yourself downtown at night, this is a must-see.

Lightscape at the San Antonio Botanical Gardens
$26-28 per person — Nov. 11-Jan. 8
The Botanical Gardens will be ablaze with one million lights, treating visitors to the garden to stunning configurations of lit plants with beautiful constellations as they hike the gorgeous grounds. The event will also include drinks, food, s’mores and more.

Ice Skating at the Rotary Ice Rink at Travis Park
$14 per person — Nov. 18-Jan. 16
Despite San Antonio being perpetually too warm for ice to form (with rare exceptions), winter-time fun wouldn’t be complete without ice skating — even if it’s from a mechanically frozen rink. Enjoy a few hours on the ice in the middle of downtown Travis Park this winter.

Luminaria Contemporary Arts Festival
FREE — Nov. 19 at 6 p.m.
Kick-off Thanksgiving Break with a free music and arts festival that will occur from Travis Park to the Tobin Center. The event will feature 40-50 artists and groups of 200+ artists, with two stages for live music and many light installations. According to the website, the event promises to “transform streets, buildings, and theatres [into a] place of dreams and imagination for one festive night.”

College Night at the McNay Museum — Study Break
Donations — Dec. 1 at 6 p.m.
The McNay Museum is dedicating an event just for college students, at the price of a couple of cans of food. Billed as a “study break,” students at the event will be treated to live music, food, art activities and more. Registration is now open on their website and the price is just a few donations of canned food.

Christmas at the Caverns
$23.99-46.99 per person — Dec. 3-Dec. 23
The Natural Bridge Caverns, with its surreal limestone formations, always makes for a fun outing, but more so during the month of December, when the path that winds through the cave is lit with Christmas lights as Christmas Carols echo through the vast and beautiful Hill Country chasm.

Chanukah on the River at the Arneson River Theatre
FREE — Dec. 5
Celebrate Hanukkah on the River this December. The event will feature a performance by the Moshav Band, free jelly donuts, jumbo balloon menorah lighting, a Chanukah cruise experience, Hanukkah music played by a mariachi band and more.

Holiday River Walk Artisan Market and Show — FREE
FREE — Dec. 9-11
If you need to do some holiday shopping, this artisan market may have just what you’re looking for. With over 40 handmade artisan vendors lining the River Walk featuring pottery, textiles, jewelry, woodwork, paintings, beadwork and more, the River Walk could provide some great gifts this holiday season.

Black History Holiday Lights Boat Tour
$30 per person — Dec. 10 at 4 p.m.
Join tour guides from the San Antonio African American Community Archive and Museum (SAAACAM) as they take you on a “thought-provoking mental journey” on the San Antonio River. Come and learn about San Antonio’s African American history in the “heart of the city.” The tours will take place at the SAAACAM at La Villita.

2nd Chance Prom for LGBTQ and Allied Adults
$25 per person — Dec. 10
Trans Power SA is hosting the first annual 2nd Chance Prom for LGBTQ and allied adults (18+) at Brick at the Blue Star. The evening will feature a danceable DJ set and a dinner in a “safe, affirming” atmosphere. Attendees are encouraged to “come as you are” with a dress code that ranges from “formal,” “dressy” and “casual” to “royalty.”

The Nutcracker by Alamo City Arts at McAlister Auditorium
$20-45 per person — Dec. 17-18 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
For two nights, Tchaikovsky’s beloved holiday-time ballet will be performed by Alamo City Arts and played orchestrally by Viva — the Alamo City Symphony. The performance will feature 75 performers in 150 roles and one of the most famous classical pieces of all time.

Trans Siberian Orchestra — The Ghosts of Christmas Eve
Prices vary — Dec. 30 at 7:30 p.m
The holiday-themed arena-rock band returns to San Antonio with the “Ghosts of Christmas Eve,” the set that originally catapulted Trans-Siberian Orchestra 20 years ago into a globe-trotting stadium-filling act. Come witness them live at the AT&T Center.