There are so many things to do in a regular year in Duluth, it landed the city on the Woman's Day list at number 23. The list they have is pre-pandemic, but let's still celebrate!

Some of the reasons we landed in the top 25 are the traditions we've grown to love through the years.

The first item list the fun you can have by attending the Christmas City of the North parade, the Friday before Thanksgiving. Families line the street and wait to wave to someone they know, or their favorite business, TV personality, radio personality, dance group, or marching band. This year, it was mostly virtual with no people lining the streets. KBJR TV, the organizer behind the parade, covered the small number of people that made up the parade and the bands and dance groups were filmed, we made the best of it.

Then there's the Christmas City Express, one of the many train rides offered by the North Shore Scenic Railroad. The CCE is a vintage train wrapped in holiday lights that takes the passengers for a ride along the North Shore. I've been on it, and it's changed over the years. You hear the story of the Christmas City Express and how Christmas was saved. There are refreshments and gifts for the kids. This year it's virtual. You can purchase your way onto a special webcast of the train and story here.

Of course, you have to mention Bentleyville's Tour of Lights. Normally it is a walking tour through Bayfront Festival Park with thousands of lights, a giant tree, and even a place to stop and see Santa. In years past there was a cookie stop, hot chocolate, and Santa and Mrs. Claus were available to take pics and visit with the kids. This year COVID has made it a drive through, kind of the same idea but now with a car. The good part, you don't have to look for parking, although the waiting is done in line before you go through the tour.

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Another attraction is the Christmas Tour at Glensheen, voted the number 2 best Historic Home Tours in the nation by USA Today. All the in-person tours have been suspended this year due to the pandemic, but you can still take a virtual tour.

Superior Trails mentioned there is Duluth's Junior Leagues annual "Festival of Trees", which is the second week of November at the DECC. Showcasing hand-decorated trees, there are over 100 craft vendors participating and draws a lot of people. You can enjoy all the unique items as well as a visit from Santa Claus.

The annual Julebyen along the North Shore, this year also a virtual festival. According to the website, it is a centuries-old Scandinavian and German tradition celebrated with ethnic foods, crafts, holiday decorations, and music. Knife River hosts this fun get together and draws a lot of people. This is a mostly outside celebration. They will feature an Online Market with foods and unique, hand-made gifts by local artisans. A virtual Troll Village, with a book corner, and a variety of recreational exhibits and vendors.

While you are in Duluth, you can sneak over to Fairlawn Mansion, there's a Christmas Crafts Winter Village, and don't forget the Downtown Duluth Christmas Window decoration contest. Each business decorates their window with lights and/or decorations and people vote for the champion.

You can also take advantage of all the wonderful light displays people put on their homes and you can drive around and enjoy in the Duluth/Superior area. Making Duluth one of the top cities to visit during the holiday season.

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