Detroit Noel Night 2017: Everything you need to know

Noel Night in Midtown is on Saturday, Dec. 2

Horse Drawn Carriage rides at Noel Night/Facebook
Horse Drawn Carriage rides at Noel Night/Facebook

DETROIT – One of Detroit's most festive events is this weekend in Midtown. The 45th annual Noel Night takes over Woodward Avenue on December 2, 2017.

Over 100 participating venues, including the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Michigan Science Center, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, the Detroit Historical Museum, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and the Detroit Public Library, will open their doors to the public free of charge during this Cultural Center-wide holiday open house.

Activities include horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday shopping, family craft activities and performances by over 200 area music, theatre, and dance groups, and other special performances.

Here's everything you need to know about Noel Night 2017:

Date: Saturday, December 2, 2017
Time: 5 p.m. - 10 p.m.
Location: Midtown Detroit (Woodward Avenue between Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd and Palmer)
Cost: FREE

PLEASE NOTE:  The location for the community sing-along led by the Salvation Army has changed. It will now take place on Wayne State University's campus at the southwest corner of Woodward and Warren Avenues.

Here are some of the special installations this year:

HORSE CARRIAGE RIDES: Horse-drawn carriage rides are a fabulous way to get in the spirit of the season! We're excited to feature the campus of Wayne State University on this year's route. Tickets will be sold in a booth in front of Wayne State's Walter P. Reuther Library located at 5401 Cass right where Kirby intersects. Ticket prices: $7 / adults and $3 per children ages 12 and under.

LIVE ANIMALS OF THE NATIVITY: The Cathedral Church of St. Paul, one of the venues that has been participating in Noel Night since the beginning, is hosting its annual "Live Animals of the Nativity" on their Woodward lawn from 5:00-9:15 p.m. The Cathedral Church of St. Paul is located at 4800 Woodward.

WINTER ART AND RETAIL MARKET: The Wayne State University Winter Art & Retail Market is a new pop-up marketplace that will also be located at the Wayne State University green space located at the corner of Woodward and Warren. Wayne State’s Office of Economic Development, the James Pearson Duffy Department of Art and Art History (A&AH) and TechTown Detroit are partnering on this market that will feature local businesses and A&AH-affiliated artists.

Here's some of the highlighted performances for Noel Night:

AFRO BLUE (7 & 9 p.m.) at The Garden Theater: Afro Blue, was founded in the spring of 2002 by Connaitre Miller, Jazz Voice Coordinator at Howard University. Singing music similar to the styles of Lambert, Hendricks and Ross, The Manhattan Transfer, and Take 6, while adding their own unique sound, this dynamic “vocal big band” has performed to wide critical acclaim. Afro Blue has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered; reached the top four on The Sing-Off, NBC-TV’s a cappella group competition; and joined the legendary Bobby McFerrin in selections from his Grammy-nominated VOCAbuLarieS album during the 2011 D.C. 

THE CACTUS BLOSSOMS (7:30 & 8:45 p.m.) at the DIA Lecture Hall: Minneapolis-based brother duo The Cactus Blossoms, Jack Torrey and Page Burkum, have a new studio album, You’re Dreaming, out on Red House Records. Produced by JD McPherson and featuring all original tracks by the duo and one cover, “No More Crying the Blues,” the albums shines a spotlight on the time-honored tradition of blood harmony a la the Everly Brothers with their classic country pop sound. In his review of the album, Jon Freeman of Rolling Stone Country writes, "There's no getting around it: You're Dreaming is pretty damn dreamy."

CANTUS (7 & 8:45 p.m.) at the DIA Rivera Court: Acclaimed as “the premier men’s vocal ensemble in the United States” (Fanfare), Cantus engages audiences in a meaningful music experience and ensures the future of ensemble singing by mentoring young singers and educators. 

ETIENNE CHARLES CREOLE CHRISTMAS (7:30 & 9 p.m.): at the Majestic Theater: Jazz trumpeter Etienne Charles adds a new twist to the holidays with music from his dynamic Creole Christmas album. Featuring classic selections from the Caribbean, American, and European holiday songbooks, Charles and his ensemble celebrate the Christmas season with unique interpretations of pieces from Charles’ diverse musical roots. Charles shines a new light on tunes such as Mighty Spoiler’s hilarious classic “Father Christmas,” “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town,” “Tchaikovsky’s “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” and “Chocolate,” Donny Hathaway’s “This Christmas,” and two Lionel Belasco waltzes: “Juliana” and “Roses of Caracas Waltz.”

View the full list of highlighted performances here and a full entertainment schedule here.

View the Noel Night 2017 MAP below:

For everything else on Noel Night, visit their website here.

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