Santa Sightings! Where to See Santa 2018

A trip to see a man in a big red coat typically consists of giant canes, a plush velvet chair and a quaint old man with a twinkle in his eye. No matter where you go the experience of  visiting Santa Claus comes back to one thing, the spirit of Christmas. In order to spread holiday cheer to you and your family, we’ve compiled a list of where to see Santa in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan. There’s no way we caught them all. After all, Santa can visit all the children of the world in just one night! However, we definitely were able to find some of the best and brightest. Take a break from the pandemonium that is holiday shopping. Settle into this December with a Santa Sighting for yourself! As some may say, seeing is believing.

Franklin Park Mall – Toledo, OH

When: Now until Dec 24th

Photo Packages Available for Purchase

While you are out shopping, stop and visit Santa in his brand new Wishing Garden in the Macy’s wing. This year not only do you get some awesome pictures, but a reindeer bracelet as well! Drop by or schedule with Santa Fast Pass, a convenient online service that enables customers to pre-pay for their photo package and select a convenient day and session.

Franklin Park Mall – Soothing Santa

When: December 9th from 8 – 10am

Free Event| Must Register | Photo Packages Available for Purchase

Santa understands there are some kids that may need extra patience and quiet during their time with him. Soothing Santa is partnered with Autism Speaks, the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization dedicated to funding research into the cause, prevention, treatment and cure for autism, increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders, and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families.

Enjoy this soothing and sensory-friendly event for children with all spectrum of special needs and their families. This event is open early to allow families to experience the holidays and Santa tradition with comfort.

Bass Pro – Rossford, OH

When: Now until Dec 24th / View Time Schedule

Free Event | Bass Pass Required (Receive in store, quantities limited) | Free 4×6 Photo

Visit Bass Pro to shop, explore Santa’s Wonderland, and visit Jolly Old Saint Nick. This free Wonderland experience allows kids to enjoy crafts, games and activities. All ages welcome! To get a Bass Pass, visit the Bass Pass ticket depot in the store. Bass Passes provide a time slot to see Santa, allowing you to explore Santa’s Wonderland and shop while waiting. Once they are out of Bass Passes for that day, you will have to stop back in another day to see Santa. Additional photo packages are available in store as well.

Levis Commons – Perrysburg, OH

When: Now – Dec 23rd on select days | View Day & Time Schedule

Bring the whole family to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus (on special dates) at Levis Commons. Ride a horse and carriage, enjoy the beautiful Christmas tree, send your wish list letter to the North Pole, and stop by Santa House (Courtesy of Arhaus) to take free personal photos to share on Social Media #LifeAtLevis for a chance to win great Levis Commons’ prizes!

Cabela’s – Dundee, MI

When: Saturday Dec 9th, and 16th from 11am-1pm and 2-3pm

Free / One complimentary picture for each family

Saturdays are for Santa!  Receive a complimentary photo with Santa, who will be located in the Home and Cabin Department. Bring your personal camera for additional photos.

Toledo Zoo Lights Before Christmas – Toledo, OH

When: Now – Dec 31st | Sun – Thurs 3-8pm | Fri & Sat 3-9pm

Nonmember Adult $18 | Kids & Seniors $15

Members Free Unlimited Weekday Visits & 1 Free Weekend Visit

Save $1 by purchasing ahead online!

The area’s brightest holiday tradition is a must-do for the season. Among the over one million lights and more than 200 illuminated animal images, you will find Santa’s workshop. Visit Santa in his new location in Arctic Encounter and pose for a fun family photo. (Paid photo opportunity)

Pet Photos with Santa

Where: Your local Petco

When: December 8th – 15th

For a small donation of $9.95, you get a commemorative digital photo and the assurance that you are helping pets in need find their forever homes.

Breakfast with Santa – Ottawa Lake, MI

Where: The Legacy by Arthur Hills

When: December 8th – 9:30am – 1pm

$9.75 Per Person | Free for 2 years old and under

Call 734-854-1101 to reserve your spot. Seating is limited.

What makes a visit with Santa better? Pancakes and sausage, of course! A menu of
fluffy handmade pancakes, sausage links, hot chocolate and juice will come along with some fun holiday crafts to take home. Santa will be making a special trip to The Legacy to hear all the kids’ Christmas wishes and take photos with each child.
You can watch the iconic Christmas favorite “A Christmas Story” during breakfast with Santa. Santa hats, reindeer antlers and ugly Christmas sweaters are encouraged!

Children’s Wonderland – Sylvania, OH

Where: 7060 W Sylvania Ave, Sylvania, OH 43560

When: December 7th – 24th | Open Daily

Pricing and Hours vary, click here to learn more!

For many years now, families from all over the Northwest Ohio have been coming to share in the holiday cheer at Children’s Wonderland. Dozens of classic exhibits will be on display, train rides will be available, and there will be many opportunities to take photos with Santa. While Santa is a big celebrity, he definitely is not the main attraction at this holiday favorite!


Written: Dec 5, 2018

About The Author

Maria Taylor

Lover of pugs, peppermint mochas, and graphic design, Maria is a content specialist for Danberry Realtors. The Home Sweet Toledo blog focuses on community guides + local events, as well as home inspiration + design trends. Enjoy!