It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas

The holidays will soon be in full swing in Marana and neighboring towns, and we don’t want you to miss a thing! From the annual local holiday festival to Winter Solstice tours of ancient petroglyphs, and Holiday Lights at the Tucson Zoo, there’s truly something for everyone to enjoy!

Below is a listing of several popular events enjoyed by Gladden Farms residents.

Marana Holiday Festival & Christmas Tree Lighting

Don’t miss the Town of Marana’s annual Holiday Festival and Christmas Tree Lighting. This year’s event is on Dec. 3 and will be held at the Marana Municipal Complex roundabout.

  • Enjoy live music & dancers
  • Check out the food vendors
  • Shop for holiday gifts at the marketplace
  • Have your family’s photo taken with Santa Claus
  • Experience the glittering holiday tree lighting with its festive synchronized music

For more information, visit the Marana Town Calendar.

Marana Christmas Express

Create fun family memories at the Marana Christmas Express this year. It’s the perfect destination for Christmas cheer and tasty treats. This year the event, held at Post Farms, begins on Dec. 9 and runs through Dec. 23.

  • Ride the Christmas train
  • Meet adorable farm animals at the petting zoo
  • Experience exhilarating rides like the Coronado, Corn Flyer, Cyclone Swing, Honey Pot Spinner
  • Watch your little ones ride the mini tractor
  • Listen to wonderful holiday stories
  • Savor some hot chocolate and sweet treats from the bakery

Children aged two and under are free. For tickets and more information, visit Christmas Express at Marana Farms.

Holiday Nights at Tohono Chul

Just north of Marana in Oro Valley is a stunning 37-acre botanical garden featuring shops, galleries, a bistro, and multiple outdoor live performance areas. On Dec. 9, 10, 16 and 17, Tohono Chul will host its annual Holiday Nights event.

  • Stroll garden paths illuminated with over a million twinkling lights
  • Enjoy live music and entertainment
  • Shop for one-of-a-kind artisan holiday gifts
  • Sip hot chocolate and savor holiday treats
  • Have your photo taken with Santa Claus

For more information, visit the

Reid Park Zoo Holiday Zoolights 2022

Just down the road in midtown Tucson is ever popular annual Zoolights event at Reid Park Zoo. It’s a popular, family friendly event. Beginning the first weekend in December, the zoo will be transformed into a winter wonderland with lots to see and enjoy!

  • See the twinkling lights
  • Visit the lit animal sculptures
  • Have a great time listening to live music
  • Enjoy festive holiday snacks
  • Get your family photo taken with Santa Claus

For more information, visit

Old Pueblo Archeology Winter Solstice Tour

Another holiday tradition in Marana is the annual Winter Solstice tour of Los Morteros and Picture Rock Petroglyphs. This special tour is hosted by the Old Pueblo Archeology Center and led by Archeologist Allen Dart.

This year’s event is on Dec. 21 and departs from Marana near Silverbell and Linda Vista Boulevard. The event runs from 8 am to noon and the cost is $35, which helps cover tour expenses and supports the center’s ongoing education programs.

To learn more, send an email to or visit the

Gladden Farms’ Community Association “Winter Wonderland” Event

If you and yours live in Gladden Farms, don’t miss the Community Association’s Winter Wonderland event. It’s a great place to say hello to friends and meet new neighbors. The event is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 9 and begins at 5 p.m. The location is Stonegate Park at 11615 Gladden Farms, Marana.


•    Rock wall climbing
•    Hayrides
•    A mechanical reindeer
•   Food trucks
•   Face painting

Please register at Gladden Farms Community Association