Downtown Events

Downtown and Over–the–Rhine Events

Friday, Dec. 14 – Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018

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The Nutcracker

Now through Dec. 24Friday, Dec. 14, 7:30 pm

Saturday, Dec. 15, 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm

Sunday, Dec. 16, 1:00 pm and 6:30 pm

Music Hall

Cincinnati Ballet’s holiday triumph returns once again to Music Hall in all its splendor. Complete with eye-popping sets and costumes, and set to Tchaikovsky’s beloved score, The Nutcracker is the family tradition that can’t be missed. Embark on a journey with Clara and her Nutcracker Prince, and follow the Snow Queen and her King to the Land of Sweets, where the Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier are waiting to embrace you with treats and exotic celebrations.

Take advantage of photo opportunities with Snow Queen and Nutcracker 45 minutes prior to matinee performances (excludes Saturday, December 15 matinee) and 35 minutes prior to all evening performances. Photo opportunities will take place in Corbett Tower which is located on the third floor of Music Hall.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra: The Ghosts of Christmas EveFriday, Dec. 14, 4:00 and 8:00 PMUS Bank Arena

Live Nation is proud to welcome TSO when they return to Cincinnati for their 2018 North American tour THE GHOSTS OF CHRISTMAS EVE, The Best of TSO & more presented by Hallmark Channel! U.S. Bank Arena will host two spectacular shows on, Friday, December 14 at 4:00pm and 8:00pm. Tickets for both shows go on sale Friday, September 14th at 10am with a portion of the proceeds benefitting The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden, Alzheimer’s Association, St. Joseph Orphanage, The Music Resource Center, and Toys for Tots, courtesy of TSO, Live Nation, Cumulus Radio and Hubbard Radio.

Based on TSO’s multi-platinum DVD and long-running PBS fundraiser, the story follows the journey of a young runaway who, on Christmas Eve, breaks into an abandoned vaudeville theater seeking shelter from the cold, and the ghostly visions she experiences from that concert hall’s past. “The Ghosts of Christmas Eve” features such lasting crowd-pleasers as "Christmas Eve Sarajevo 12/24," "O’ Come All Ye Faithful," "Good King Joy," "Christmas Canon," "Music Box Blues," "Promises To Keep," and "This Christmas Day."

Cool Life Album Release

Friday, Dec. 14, 9:00 pm

The Woodward Theater, 1404 Main St

With Go Go Buffalo and Lemon Sky. $12, $10 advance. Ages 18-up.

Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!) Dec. 14-16 (now through Dec. 30), 7:30 pmCincinnati Shakespeare Company, 1195 Elm St

CSC’s holiday smash hit Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!) is back! What begins as another annual production of A Christmas Carol, soon devolves into a slightly irreverent look at all of our favorite “Beloved Holiday Classics” including It’s a Wonderful Life, Frosty, Rudolph, Charlie Brown and more! Three actors (with the help of Santa) send up everything from Dickens to Dr. Seuss in 90+ minutes of high octane jollity and frivolity. $14-$54. Box office: 513-381-2273.

Christmas with No Promises

Friday, Dec. 14, 7:30 pm

Garfield Theatre, 719 Race St.

Kindle your holiday spirits with the joyful harmonies of NO PROMISES. Ohio’s premier vocal jazz ensemble offers a family-friendly concert featuring memorable arrangements of secular and sacred classics by Andy Williams, John Coltrane, Joni Mitchell, Harry Connick, Jr. and many more. Tickets $15 Advance, $20 Door.

Free Streetcar RidesSaturday, Dec. 15

Enjoy free rides on the Cincinnati Bell Connector all day. Also enjoy holiday tunes on the Cincinnati Bell Connector from the Young Professionals Choral Collective and ArtsWave's CincySings Choirs.

YPCC Family Holiday Concert: Fa’s & La’sSaturday, Dec. 15, 4:00 pmFirst Lutheran Church

YPCC Carolers love to spread holiday cheer. This holiday season, we're presenting a family concert that is sure to get everyone into the spirit.Bring the whole family on Saturday for an afternoon concert featuring all of your holiday favorites from Jingle Bells to Silent Night. Singing along is encouraged! General Admission - $10; Children (10 and under) - Free with ticket

3:00PM - Pre-Concert Happy Hour and Meet & Greet with MadCap Puppets!! Join us for cookies and punch with the MadCap crew! Bring your little ones early for pictures with the performers.

4:00PM - Concert begins @ First Lutheran Church (downtown Cincinnati)

City Flea Holiday MarketSaturday, Dec. 15, 4:00 – 9:00 pmWashington Park

Everyone's favorite holiday shopping experience is back! Come enjoy the charm of Washington Park and OTR during the holiday season and support your local ecosystem of entrepreneurs and creatives. Your dollars are critical to making Cincinnati thrive!

2018 Holiday Bright RideSaturday, Dec. 15, 6:00 pmWashington Park

Let’s light things up around town - with our bikes! Use any kind of lights or reflective thingy you can find to light up yourself and your bike: battery powered twinkle lights, spoke lights, glow light necklaces etc.

We’ll meet at the Washington Park bandstand at 6PM and ride brightly through the dark soon after! The ride will be short (approximately 4 miles), and flat, and the pace will be slow and easy for everyone who wants to ride - kids included!

Cincinnati Cyclones v. Wichita Thunder: Star Wars NightSaturday, Dec. 15, 7:30 pmUS Bank Arena

Join the Rebel Alliance and join the Cyclones for Star Wars Night presented by the YMCA of Greater Cincinnati! Some of your favorite characters from the movie franchise will be on site. The Cyclones will wear special Star Wars inspired jerseys that will be auctioned off after the game.

Christmas Pajama Party

Saturday, Dec. 15,  8:00 pmThe Lackman Bar, 1237 Vine St

Stay in your PJs while you hang with us on Saturday, December 15th! The Lackman is throwing a Christmas Pajama Party complete with cocktails to warm you up from the winter weather. Enjoy $10 Slane Whiskey Irish Coffee in a souvenir mug with $5 refills all evening! Suggested attire: pajamas and slippers.

Gary OwenSaturday, Dec. 15, 8:30 pmTaft Theatre

Gary Owen has been entertaining American audiences for more than a decade with his side-splitting comedy.  Having performed to sold-out audiences in all the major comedy clubs and theatres across the country, Owen is one of America’s most beloved comedians, having been proclaimed by Ebony magazine as Black America’s “Favorite White Comedian”.

Owen grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and has always had a passion for comedy.  He enrolled in the US navy following high school, where he was chosen for the prestigious Presidential Honor Guard.  After leaving his ceremonial position, Owen became a military police officer at the Naval Installations on Coronado Island in San Diego.  During this time, he returned to his true calling: standup comedy.  Two appearances on the multicultural comedy showcase, “BET's ComicView,” won him his own one-hour “grandstand” show.  At the end of the season he was selected from the year’s four "grandstanders" to be the host.  Owen currently resides in Ohio with his wife Kenya and their three children.

Drag Brunch: Sugar Plum FairiesSunday, Dec. 16, 11:30 am – 2:30 pmMetropole

Happy Holidays Sugar Plum! Will you be naughty, nice, or a lot of both for our seasonally-inspired drag brunch? Join us as your favorite queens Amaya Sexton and Jessica Dimon emcee the best show in town to jingle your bells. Price is $35 per person; includes a family-style brunch and a welcome mimosa. Daring and divine costumes encouraged.

Art on VineSunday, Dec. 16, 12:00 – 6:00 pmRhinegeist Brewery

Head over to Rhinegeist Brewery, as more than 70 local makers display and sell their wares at this boutique art market. Expect to find photography, pottery, fine art, local goods, jewelry, apparel and much more.

Tossed Salad II: Band Mashup Competition

Sunday, Dec. 16, 7:30 pm The Woodward Theater, 1404 Main St

WHAT IS TOSSED SALAD? It’s like “band in a hat” with a twist for charity (Freestore Foodbank). Musicians submit their name and instrument via an online survey. There’s a hosted drawing night, where musicians are randomly drawn form a pop-up band. Three songs are randomly drawn for each band, and they will select two of those to learn and perform.

Pop-up bands have a month and a half to learn the songs – in any style. For example, you get the song “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and choose to play it as Ronnie James Dio or a Deftones song, or VH1 style -- on stools. Bands are encouraged to have fun with the band names, costumes and styles. All proceeds from the admission cost to the main event go directly to Freestore Foodbank. Just $1 = 3 meals the Freestore can provide to our neighbors in the community!

At the main event in December, a panel of celebrity judges will select the winning band, and that band will be presented with a specially-crafted award 'trophy'.

Brian Thomas

Brian Thomas

Based in Cincinnati, OH, the Brian Thomas Morning Show covers news and politics, both local and national, from a conservative point of view. Read more


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