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CMC announces special holiday hours; complete shopping, visit with Santa starting Nov. 27

As families prepare to dine apart Thanksgiving Day and reimagine long-held traditions, Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC) is offering safe alternatives to continue holiday traditions and help establish new ones.

CMC is offering special holiday hours this week, including opening on Nov. 25 and helping you shake off the gravy hangover with visits from Santa beginning Nov. 27.

This Thanksgiving and holiday season will look different than years past for many families, but CMC is offering a bit of familiarity from holidays past. Holiday Junction featuring the Duke Energy Holiday Trains features a holiday favorite now in their 74th year and offers a safe, socially-distant way for families to gather.

Rather than cramming into your grandparents’ dining room or spilling into the living room, bedroom and basement of your brother’s house, spread out among CMC’s historic holiday trains and LEGO layouts, towering dinosaur skeletons and sprawling galleries. There’s room for the full family to gather and visit safely, bringing a smile to everyone’s masked face.

In addition to requiring all guests to wear masks and instituting timed tickets to manage attendance and ensure social distancing, CMC has taken additional steps to ensure a safe visit this holiday season. The riding train will not be running this season, but in its place CMC has hidden objects ranging from nutcrackers and footballs to bobbleheads and ballet slippers in the Holiday Scavenger Hunt, presented by Taft Law.

A gesture-activated, no-touch digital storybook is another new addition this year that tells the 74-year history of the Duke Energy Holiday Trains with nostalgic photos from across the decades.

Visit with Santa starting Nov. 27

Santa sightings may be few and far between this holiday season as he spends much more time at the North Pole making a record number of toys for children who have been unprecedentedly good this year – those who have dutifully completed their remote learning work, patiently and quietly waited for their parents to finish Zoom calls while working from home and who have stopped just short of turning their living room into Thunderdome.

But Santa is still taking time to visit CMC every weekend to double check wish lists and hear one last appeal from those few boys and girls on the naughty list. Guests can visit Santa’s Fireplace, presented by Kroger, to safely speak with Santa through a plexiglass speaker system. Santa is available every Friday through Sunday beginning on Nov. 27. Cincinnati Black Santa will make a special appearance on Dec. 18.

Complete your holiday shopping at CMC

While you’re visiting, knock out some of your holiday shopping in our museum store. We’ve rounded up some of our best gifts this season, including top picks for the history buff, future astronaut and amateur paleontologist on your list. Plus, a CMC Membership makes a great gift that keeps giving all year long and supports CMC’s mission to inspire people to explore and think more critically about the world around them yesterday, today and tomorrow. You can even shop from your couch at shopcincymuseum.com.

CMC is open every Thursday through Monday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is closed on Tuesday and Wednesday except for special holiday hours. Additionally, CMC is closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

Holiday Junction featuring the Duke Energy Holiday Trains is open Friday-Sunday through Jan. 3 with special holiday hours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 25 and daily from Dec. 18 through Jan. 3. For the most up-to-date information on hours, visit cincymuseum.org.

Cincinnati Museum Center

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