2023 Portage Tree Lighting Guide: Food, Santa + Fun on Saturday, December 2 in Celery Flats

Portage tree lighting

Spread some Holiday Cheer with the Portage Tree Lighting

The historical Celery Flats of Portage are known as a favorite spot for scenic walks and serve as a great backdrop for photographs all year long.

However, in recent years it is also growing as a must-see destination during the winter holidays.

We stopped by to grab some photos while the decorations were in process, leading up to one of our favorite Christmas events: the City of Portage Tree Lighting Ceremony on December 2, 2023.

Read on for a sneak peek of the decorations and planned festive activities:

Portage Tree Lighting Ceremony Highlights

The annual Portage Tree Lighting Ceremony starts near the library and continues with a fun celebration in Celery Flats.

This FREE event includes Santa, beverages, desserts, petting zoo, ice sculptures, music, and of course- LOTS of lights!

Visitors can return throughout the season for holiday photos and to visit all of the festive decorations.

Celery Flats Christmas Portage Tree Lighting Ceremony

Event Dates & Times Portage Tree Lighting

Saturday, December 2, 2023 at 6:00 PM


City Centre (Tree Lighting) 300 Library Lane, Portage MI

Celery Flats (Activities), 7335 Garden Lane, Portage MI

Portage Tree Lighting Activities

The fun doesn’t end once the lights turn on near the library. Head over to Celery Flats for the following:

  • Visit Santa
  • Enjoy cookies & warm drinks
  • Write letters to Santa
  • Visit the petting zoo
  • Drop off donations of warm clothes and non-perishable food
  • Watch ice carving demonstrations
  • Take a stroll down the holiday tree and card walk
  • Find the KZOOKIDS tree!
map: The City of Portage

Portage Tree Lighting Parking

Parking is available at Celery Flats, the Portage Zhang Senior Center, Portage Parks & Recreation and Portage City Hall.

We recommend bringing a flashlight (or use your phone’s flashlight) while walking from the parking lots. The city also adds some additional lighting to help illuminate your walk.

map: The City of Portage

Holiday Tree and Card Walk

2023 marks the fourth year of decorated trees in Celery Flats, where local businesses join the festivities by adding their decorative touches to five-foot spruce trees.

Mixed among the trees are massive Christmas cards designed by local artists and organizations.

Celery-Flats-trees-2022 Portage Tree Lighting Ceremony
Be sure to visit the decorated trees in Celery Flats
Celery Flats 2022


We are super excited to be part of the festive décor in Celery Flats for the third year in a row! Be sure to visit all of the trees- many businesses get pretty creative!

2022 KZOOKIDS Tree

Photo Ops at Celery Flats

Celery Flats is known for its Kodak-worthy moments during all four seasons, but the City of Portage has upped its game for the holidays.

In addition to the trees and oversized cards, there is a giant reindeer, a sleigh, and decorations under the covered pavilion.

Spots around the sidewalks also feature cute presents, wagons, a decorated gazebo and snowmen.

This sleigh is covered in lights and offers a wooden bench for sitting
The gazebo is another spot for fun photos.

Celery Flats History

The historical area in Celery Flats includes an original one-room schoolhouse from 1856, a 1931 grain elevator, and Stuart Manor.

Constructed in 1846 by William Welch, this house was the summer home of the second Michigan U.S. Senator, Charles Stuart.

These buildings and others are restored and available for tours and private events.

Celery Flats Christmas
Celery Flats Grain Elevator
Historic schoolhouse in Celery Flats

Event Recap