McAdenville, which is just 20 minutes west of Charlotte, has garnered attention from USA Today, HGTV, Southern Living, and Good Morning America since 1956. It is widely hailed as the place to visit during the holiday season. And with good reason.
Come December, every inch of this tiny Gaston County town is plastered with Christmas lights. Trees, porches, windows, roofs – no area is left unattended. Decorations run the gamut, from tacky (blow-up reindeer) to understated (elegant wreaths), secular (Santa runway lanes) to religious (front yard nativity scenes), which is particularly incredible given McAdenville’s miniscule population (662 at last count).
On December 1st, the town kicks off the season with its annual Official Lighting of Christmas Town USA. At 6 p.m., one lucky McAdenville Elementary student will have the distinct privilege of pulling the giant switch (no, truly, it is a huge switch) that flips on every Christmas light bulb in McAdenville. Following the ceremony, lights will glow every night from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on weekdays and from 5:30 to 11 p.m. on weekends until December 26th.
If you can’t make it to the lighting ceremony, don’t fret. There’s plenty more Christmas in Christmas Town. On Friday, December 16th, McAdenville will hold its annual Yule Log Parade and Christmas Town Festival. Residents and visitors will gather at 5:45 p.m. to pull a yule log through town to Legacy Park, where the log will be placed in a fireplace and lit. The festival begins immediately afterward, with caroling, hot cocoa, kettle corn, and a visit from Santa Claus.
Make sure you don’t miss out on this North Carolina Christmas must-see!