The Friday 5 — Dec. 8-10

Your guide to this weekend's events

Online Only | Published December 7, 2017

1. Holiday Ice Festival
Dec. 9 • Downtown Ferndale

Downtown Ferndale will be packed with ice sculptures, animals and holiday fun when the Holiday Ice Festival returns to the city for its 17th year. The festival will return from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 9, taking over West Nine Mile Road near Planavon Street.

The event will kick off with Santa Claus arriving around 10 a.m. The festival will also feature more than 50 ice sculptures strewn throughout the downtown area, including ones that will be created live. A lunch with Santa event at Rosie O'Grady's, 279 W. Nine Mile Road, will take place from noon to 1:30 p.m.

The event will also feature live reindeer, hayrides, a pancake breakfast prior to and during the event, and a warming station serving hot chocolate and cookies.

For more information, visit

Related story: Holiday Ice Festival will fill downtown Ferndale with more than 50 ice sculptures

2. Ford House holiday tours
Through Jan. 7 • Edsel and Eleanor Ford House, Grosse Pointe Shores

The historic Edsel and Eleanor Ford House — once home to the family of auto pioneer Henry Ford's only child — is once again holding holiday house tours, which will run through Jan. 7 and will include limited hours on Christmas Eve.

The house features 14 full-sized Christmas trees trimmed with more than 2,500 ornaments. Visitors can take in the sights while learning more about the family and their holiday traditions.

A special event — Merry & Bright Nights, which was formerly known as Winter Wonderland tours — will take place on the grounds. This event will include strolling candlelight house tours with carolers and more limited lighted walks through the grounds. Merry & Bright Nights are Thursdays through Saturdays Dec. 7 to 23; most Saturday nights were sold out at press time, but Thursday evenings still had decent availability. Santa will be on hand to greet visitors in the pool house, said Fitzpatrick, and there will be lights and a train set by the playhouse. She said there will also be food and beverages, along with fire pits. The Cotswold Café is closed because of construction, but visitors can still purchase souvenirs in a small gift shop set up inside the garage.

The Ford House is located at 1100 Lake Shore Road, between Vernier and Nine Mile roads. Updates on ticket availability for special events like Merry & Bright Nights can be found on the Ford House Facebook page and website,

For reservations or more information, visit the website or call (313) 884-4222.

Related story: Past meets presents in Ford House holiday tours

3. Meadow Brook Holiday Walk
Through Dec. 23 • Meadow Brook Hall, Rochester Hills

Meadow Brook Hall's annual Holiday Walk will be held through Dec. 23.

Tickets for the tours cost $20 for adults, with discounts for children and seniors. The tours are self-guided and reservations are not required.

Meadow Brook Hall is the historic home built by Matilda Dodge Wilson, widow of auto pioneer John Dodge, and her second husband, Alfred Wilson. Constructed between 1926 and 1929, the 88,000-square-foot national landmark is regarded as one of the finest examples of Tudor revival-style architecture in the country.

Some other activities will be featured for guests at the holiday walk tours. Children are invited to take a Kids Candy Adventure, inspired by the “Candy Land” board game, where kids search for treats and sweets while touring the mansion and collecting prizes at Candy Cane Lane.

Special Holiday Walk events include candlelight tours and visits with Santa.

Meadow Brook Hall is located on the grounds of Oakland University, off of Adams Road, south of Walton Boulevard.

For more information and a full schedule of events, call (248) 364-6200 or visit

Related story: Decking out Meadow Brook Hall

4. 'Elf, the Musical, Jr.'
Dec. 8-Dec. 17 • Baldwin Theatre, Royal Oak

Stagecrafters Youth Theatre will present “Elf the Musical, Jr.” Dec. 8-17 at the Baldwin Theatre, 415 S. Lafayette Avenue in Royal Oak.

The performance is based on the holiday film “Elf,” and is performed by children ages 8 to 18.

Tickets cost $8 for kids 17 and younger, and $14 for adults.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit or call (248) 541-6430.

5. Holiday activities at Campus Martius
Throughout the holiday season • Campus Martius Park, Detroit

Campus Martius Park in Detroit is hosting several Christmas-themed events this month.

The Rink at Campus Martius Park will welcome guests to ice skate in the heart of the city below the giant Detroit Christmas tree throughout the holiday season. Skate rental costs $4, and admission to the rink costs $8 for adults and $7 for seniors and children under 12 every day, including Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

If skating isn’t your strong suit, there’s still plenty to do. Enjoy s’mores and a cocktail rinkside or at one of the farming stations; or thaw out in the Cadillac Square Lodge, a heated tent with views of the tree and the city skyline, and a selection of Michigan beers and wines amidst cozy leather couches and blankets.

There will be pop up markets in Cadillac Square and Capitol Park featuring local retailers. Horse-drawn carriage rides in Cadillac Square will be offered for $10 per person Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Related story: Take your holiday celebration outside this season with festive events

Staff writers Tiffany Esshaki, K. Michelle Moran, Mike Koury and Linda Shephard contributed to this report.