Celebrate the Christmas Season in Downtown New Bern

LUTS 2017 schedule of events

Beary Merry Christmas is a month long event held in Downtown New Bern. Our downtown area is transformed into a Winter Wonderland. There are a number of exciting events planned to enhance your holiday experience. Our signature event “Light Up the Season” kicks off the festivities the day after Thanksgiving with games, crafts, performers and we close one city block and officially welcome Santa as we light up his holiday home in Bear Plaza!

The festivities will continue the next day with our Community Christmas Tree lighting & sledding. With over 2,000 people in attendance last year, many felt the tree was positioned in the perfect location to bring our community together. Santa’s holiday home in Bear Plaza is open Friday through Sunday during the Christmas season allowing children to visit with Santa and have a photo.

Another event within Beary Merry Christmas is Sledding Shopping Sunday. A Sunday afternoon of sledding, activities, cookies and hot chocolate that continue to draws more and more people every year with a food drive and portion of the proceeds benefiting a downtown non-profit, Religious Community Services. Merchants are encouraged to be open on this Sunday afternoon.

Scheduled events continue weekly through Christmas. There is so much to experience for “kids” of all ages!


​Volunteers are needed throughout the season. From helping Santa in the Santa House, to setting up Light up the Season activity booths, to making cookies at the Sledding & Shopping day, and more, WE NEED YOUR HELP!
There are great opportunities for youth and activity groups, and for anyone who enjoys helping with community events - you are sure to have lots of fun!

Click here for Volunteer Responsibilities



Who’s ready for the wintery ❄️ weather heading our way? Who’s ready for some Snow Cream? Who has the best recipe? Share a recipe in the comments below for a chance to win a treat from one of 2017 sponsors. 🙋‍♀️ 🛷❄️🐾 #snownewbern #bringonthewhitestuff #realsnow #snowday #contest ...

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Only 2 days left to get in those last minute request with Santa and enjoy the beautiful lights! Santa and his elves will be in today 10-3 & 4-9 and tomorrow (Christmas Eve) 10-2! And TONIGHT is your last chance to enjoy the snow, 6-8pm!! Thank you to our Santa picture sponsor CENTURY 21 Zaytoun-Raines, ❄️ SNOW ❄️ sponsors, Riverside Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram and Fiat & Bojangles' - BeCajun.com and U.S. Cellular for providing Santa and his elves with WiFi throughout the season. ...

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Come visit with Santa today in Bear Plaza 10-3 & 4-9. Oh, and don’t forget the snow tonight 6-8pm!! ...

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Beary Merry Christmas is a working partnership between the New Bern Area Chamber of Commerce, Swiss Bear Downtown Development Corporation, City of New Bern, local businesses and volunteers.