Post-Holiday Blues: What to do in the Madison Area During your Winter Break

MadisonChristmas is over, our bellies are full of cookies and hot cocoa, and we’re all out of money after graciously giving so many holiday gifts. So, now what do you do? We have found some great, fun activities for you to do in and around Madison between now and the end of your winter break that involve little or no cost.

 Outdoor Winter Break Activities

Ice Skating

There are lots of parks in the Madison area that offer free ice skating, some even offer skate rentals.  Click here for more information on locations that are open. If you are interested in ice skating lessons, check this site out for more information.

Winter Break Ice Skating Madison

Tenney Park, Madison Wisconsin

Play Some Pond Hockey

There are a few parks in the area with ice rinks that also have hockey boards up.  Hockey boards, or no hockey boards, grab your friends and organize a friendly game of pond hockey.  pond hockey

Snowshoeing or Cross Country Skiing

These are both very very popular in Wisconsin. Get all of the information you need to know on snowshoeing and cross country skiing trails in Wisconsin here.


Sledding/ Tubing

Madison has many great areas for sledding and tubing at no cost. Grab your toboggan and hit the hills.  See the full list of hills in the Madison area here.



Tyrol Basin and Devil’s Head are the perfect places to go for snowboarding and skiing. Tyrol offers $14 lift passes on Tuesdays.  Typically daily lift tickets at both locations range from $35 to $45.  If you have your own skis or snowboard, this will help the cost, otherwise both locations do offer equipment rentals.

winter break skiing at devil's head

Drive around and Enjoy the Lights provided the perfect map for the best holiday lights displays in and around Madison.  Most lights will be on display until the first week of the new year!  Check out the map here.  You can also find a lights show at the Madison Henry Vilas Zoo, however there is an admission fee of $7 per person.  Find more information on Zoo Lights here.

christmas lights

Indoor Winter Break Activities

Go to the Theatre

Bartell Theatre: The Wizard of Oz – A Wisconsin twist on the classic story.  Tickets: $15 adults, $10 kids.  7pm shows now through Friday, December 30th.

Barrymore Theatre: Guys on Ice – Musical all about Ice Fishing- Shows every day now through January 1st, 2017. General Admission- $29.

Overture Center for the Arts: Jersey Boys – Tony, Grammy and Oliver Award Winning Best Musical – Jan 3rd -8th, 2017.  Tickets $45 – $135

Overture Center for the Arts

Attend a Movie

Market Square Theatre – (West Madison) – $3 admission to movies!  What a steal!!  This theater has a mix of films, offering everything from quality studio films to art, independent and foreign language films. See their current showings here.

Marcus Theatres – Point Cinema (West Madison) – Take advantage of their $5 Movie Tuesdays.  See a list of current showings here

Marcus Theatres – Palace Cinema (Sun Prairie) – This theatre features recliner seating, and four Big Screen Bistro’s which offer full-service, in-theatre dining.  Get the current showings schedule here.

AMC – (Fitchburg) – Recliner seating, features an IMAX screen, and MacGuffins Bar & Lounge.  See current showings here.

Sundance Cinemas – (Hilldale Mall Madison) – voted “Best Place in Madison to watch a movie” by Madison Magazine.  See full list of showtimes here.


Go to a Concert

Orpheum Theatre: Rock Singer/Songwriter Melissa Etheridge will be performing on Friday January 6th at 7pm – Tickets start at $35.

Melissa Etheridge

Attend a Sporting Event

Cheer on your favorite team over the winter break.

Badger Basketball at the Kohl Center- See the Men’s schedule here. See the Women’s schedule here.Wisconsin Badger Basketball

Badger Men’s Wrestling at the UW Field House – See schedule here.

Badger Hockey at the Kohl Center – There are several games to attend in January for both men and women’s hockey.  See Men’s schedule here.  See Women’s schedule here.

UW Badgers Hockey

Madison Capitols Hockey Games at the Coliseum at Alliant Energy Center – This is a fun event with friends and/or family.  See their schedule and more information here.

See a Comedy Show

Comedy Club on State Street – Laugh your butt off while watching some awesome comedians.  Tickets as low as $10-.  2 beverage minimum per person in showroom.  Shows are 18+. This year, there are three New Year’s Eve shows that range from $20-$40 per ticket.


Tour a Brewery

From Ale Asylum to Capitol Brewery to New Glarus Brewing Co., there are plenty of breweries to visit and most offer brewery tours and tastings.  Click Here is a full list of Wisconsin’s Breweries & Brewery Tours.


Sample Some WINE

There’s nothing like a great glass of wine to break those post-holiday blues.  There are a few wineries in the Madison area, and quite a few on the outskirts of Madison.  Check out the entire list of wineries in the area that offer tastings.

Wine Tasting

Meet New People

If none of these ideas above spark your interest, or your just looking to socialize and meet some new people over your winter break, check out Madison’s Choose your categories and find local events going on where you can meet new people.

hand shake


Now, of course these are not all of the activities and events you can do during your winter break, but we hope this helps get started and get over your post-holiday blues.  Get out there and have some fun!

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