The season of joy and holiday spirit is upon us, and we've got happenings for everyone in Raleigh, N.C., no matter what your holiday festivities entail. Holiday events have kicked off in the area and there are still lots ahead! Here are just a few ideas for where to celebrate:

Artful Holidays
Here's a time-honored way for you and your family to celebrate the holiday season together: come to Raleigh for beloved holiday presentations, including A Christmas Carol (12/9-13; pictured above) and The Nutcracker (12/18-27). Festive productions are happening all over the destination this month, also including Rudolph (through 12/24), Elf (12/10), It's a Wonderful Life (through 12/10), The Santaland Diaries (through 12/20) and more. 

Tree Lighting at the North Carolina State Capitol
The tree-lighting tradition at the Capitol continues when Gov. Pat McCrory lights the Christmas tree (12/10). Festivities begin at 5pm with luminaries and holiday music. The governor and dignitaries will make their way to the South grounds at 6:15pm to officially begin the ceremony. Enjoy delicious cookies and hot chocolate, plus the kids will love the appearance by Santa. Learn more

Jewish Cultural Festival
Join the Town of Cary and the Jewish community for a Hanukkah celebration! At 5:30pm, 12/10, meet at the art plaza in front of the Cary Arts Center to see the lighting of the nine-foot Menorah. Enjoy food trucks and vendors serving traditional Hanukkah treats, plus other foods, music and crafts for kids. Learn more

Historic Holidays
Learn about Raleigh's oldest home and early Christmas traditions at Mordecai Historic Park, with the birthplace of Andrew Johnson, during the Mordecai Holiday Open House (12/12-13) and Holiday Lantern Tours (12/12) when the Mordecai home will be festively decorated and will recreate colonial history through inspired demonstrations.

21st Annual Cary Kwanzaa Celebration
Known as a celebration for all people, focusing on family, friends and the fruits of the earth. The 21st Annual Cary Kwanzaa Celebration at the Cary Arts Center on 12/29 will feature a vendor market and children's village (hands-on arts and crafts activities), and begins at 11am. It is free and open to the public. Learn more

First Night Raleigh 2016
Join thousands of your closest friends to ring in 2016 on 12/31. This celebration takes over downtown Raleigh with entertainment, music and family-friendly activities; the evening concludes with the acorn drop and a spectacular fireworks display. Learn more

Ipreo Ice Rink
Through 1/31/16, grab your mittens, lace up your kicks and make your way to the heart of downtown Raleigh for outdoor ice skating on natural ice (learn more). Fuel up before or after you skate with plenty of excellent restaurants. And don't miss out on the shopping options!

And there's more! See all holiday events in the area here.