From “Miracle on 34th Street” to “Silver Bells,” it’s hard not to love that certain special place the holidays have on the snow dusted sidewalks of our normally less-than-enchanting city streets. This year the Short North Arts District’s annual Holiday Hop aims to please at just that! From the incredible art at the District’s seventeen galleries, the very best in toys for kids at Big Fun, the funkiest in Christmas sweater perfection at Flower Child, a hot-bed of warm looks at Ladybird for the winter trendsetter, to a warming sip at Brothers Drake for those Santas who like a little something stronger than milk with their cookies, the Short North is here for everyone’s gift list. The galleries, restaurants, and shops in the District will add a little winter magic in every window with festive decorations. Up and down High Street local vendors and artisans will be showing off their holiday cheer for all to enjoy at the city’s best place for a unique and inspired holiday season.


The Short North Arts District’s iconic arches get a holiday update with a special light show just for the season, throwing emerald, red, and white over a snowy High Street. Conifer planters with tree lights bring everyone’s Christmas trees outside the living room and onto the sidewalk, with banners billowing in the crisp air, parading snowflakes and welcoming visitors to the ‘Short North Pole.’ Lights stringing from storefronts will help illuminate the snowy streets to promise a white Christmas for all those coming to look.

Photo: @mandi_i_am




To celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the Short North, the first 100 customers to participating businesses will be given complimentary canvas bags to help carry their goodies for a well-stuffed stocking. Inside, visitors can find flyers and promotions to make their shopping experience a little easier, offering special incentives from certain stores and run-downs of what’s to see at different locations.





For those social media fiends who are in the holiday mood we are hosting a photo contest with the chance to win a $500 Short North prize pack, wrapped, bowed and all. Just snap a shot in the Short North and post it to social media with #ShortNorthPole now through December 19 for a chance to win! Pictures presented within this story all are finalists from the 2013 #ShortNorthPole Contest.

Photo: @ashleyfallon




For all those who got to experience the sit-down with Santa when they were little they remember it as many things – exciting, scary, hopeful, but most of all a right of passage. For moms and dads who want to keep the tradition going, or can’t think of what else to put in grandma’s card, getting pictures with the man himself is part of this year’s festivities.

For those adults who are feeling a little nostalgic, moonlight monarch Nina West will be hosting her own Santa’s Village for a special candy-cane sweet Christmas photo shoot as well. Be sure to bring to bring milk and cookies!

Photo: @shortnorthartsdistrict


While Barney’s and Bergdorf’s might have a slight edge on our High Street vendors for Christmas windows there’s no reason why we Columbusites shouldn’t try and close the gap. Throughout December shop windows will be on display in all their winter finery. For the contest, you – the window aficionado, will be able to pick your favorites and enter them into the contest to try and see your favorite win!

Photo: @rdmeeker




December 6 marks this year’s Holiday Hop and one of the Short North’s most festive nights. High Street will be lit up in all manner of winter revelry from the arches and street lights, to the window displays and vendor booths. Carolers, musicians, artists, and performers are going to parade the sidewalks to help everyone usher in the coming holidays with sounds of the season, not to be outdone by the galleries opening up their new winter exhibitions and the many restaurants and bars serving hearty aromas of roast duck and cranberry and all the eggnog anyone could ask for. From 4:00pm to 10:00pm, the Short North Arts District will be showcasing its very best in art, decor, food and drink, and entertainment that even the biggest Scrooge couldn’t object to.



Hosted at the beautifully renovated Garden Theater (1187 N. High St), the Holiday Pop-Up Shop offers even more for Holiday Hoppers. Huge arrays of handmade crafts, clothing, ceramics, homewares, accessories, jewelry, beauty and skin care products, baked goods and a titillating selection of local and imported draft beers leaves no one with an excuse not to have a full pile of gifts underneath their trees this year. Apart from the shopping opportunities there are also activities for kids, a holiday beer tasting, and of course, a chance for a picture with St. Nick.



Click on the image (left) for a map of holiday activities in the Short North Arts District.

The Holiday Season is sponsored by the Greater Columbus Arts Council, s77, and the Short North Alliance.











– Tyler Wilson