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The Austin Trail of Lights Kicked off the Holiday Season with Sippin’ Santa at Nickel City

It’s about that time of year, y’all. 🎄

That time of year where Christmas decorations rise up and around, holiday tunes ring through the air, and Austinites near and far prepare for one of our favorite events of the holiday season, the Austin Trail of Lights. The 2nd largest event in the city, the Austin Trail of Lights is an annual event in Zilker Park that celebrates Austin’s culture and creativity, music and food, heart and soul. Presenting over 40 displays and 2 million lights, the Austin Trail of lights is the perfect event to brighten up your holidays.

Photo by Leigh Kettle

To get us in the holiday spirit and ready for Austin’s largest holiday tradition, the Trail of Lights team threw a special, media-only Christmas pop up event at Nickel City on Wednesday, November 14. Nickel City, a favorite East Side dive bar, took Sippin’ Santa, a tiki version of Miracle’s holiday pop-up, and fully transformed into a holiday wonderland. A concept that was born in 2014, Miracle is an international Christmas-themed pop-up cocktail bar that brings holiday cheer to various cities across the world. We had the chance to stop by last year’s Miracle® on 5th Street and already couldn’t wait to see what 2018’s event would offer.

Photo by Leigh Kettle

Sippin’ Santa at Nickel City opened early for us media folks and gave us a preview of what’s to come with various delicious tiki drinks (our favorite was the Grinch Grog, featuring blanco tequila, herbal liqueur, pine, pear, lemon juice and “Grinch” syrup), light bites (we were OBSESSED with the poke from Poke-Poke), and a visit from Santa and his helpers. The Trail of Lights team shared with us what’s new at the Trail for 2018, while attendees conversed and mingled over Christmas jams in the background.

Check out some other photos from the event below,and stay tuned for more information to come on Austin Trail of Lights 2018 and Sippin’ Santa. In the meantime, be sure to go ahead and snag tickets for this year’s Trail of Lights at!

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