One of my favorite traditions during the holiday is to visit the Christkindlmarkt, a Carmel Indiana Christmas Market. The last time I went, took my beloved German aunt who told me these beautiful rich stories about the Christkindlmarkts she attended in Germany while she was growing up. The Christkindlmarkt held annually during the holidays in Carmel, IN is reminiscent of a 16th-century market in Nuremberg Germany. The event space is full of vendors lining the pathways in tiny huts, selling their wares and food. In the center, you’ll find an ice skating rink for the whole family to enjoy.
In 1996, the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest hosted the first fee Chirstkindlmarkt in Chicago, IL. The event highlighted local and international merchants. The event became such a success that they quickly expanded into another part of Illinois and Wisconsin. Not surprisingly, you know that the cherry atmosphere combined with mulled wine makes it well-deserving of its three “Best Holiday Market” nominations.
Dine on authentic German foods and drinks like Kartoffelpuffer, Baumstriezel, Tartiflette, Schnitzel & Sauerkraut, and Käsespätzle. For those among us who enjoy more traditional treats then grab eats like gourmet Belgian waffles, apple streudel, Belgian hot chocolate, raclette cheese sandwiches, sausages, classic Bavarian pretzels, and so much more. Hot mugs of German Glühwein, mulled wine, and select German beers are readily available. Local companies like Sugar Creek Winery, Daniel’s Vineyard, and Rose & Lois have booths where you can visit and take even the pickiest of eaters.
The most magical part, for me, of Christkindlmarkt was touring and meandering through the tiny house-looking shops that carried a wide variety of authentic German goods. Shop incense burners from Erzgebirge, nutcrackers, handmade German toys, gorgeous pyramids, Black Forest cuckoo clocks, hand-painted eggs, as well as Hanukkah gifts. Take home a bit of the wonderful magic of the Carmel Indiana Christmas Market by purchasing treats and gifts for your loved ones.
There is always something happening at the Carmel Indiana Christkindlmrkt. As it gets closer to market time, check the schedule for live entertainment, demonstrations, special characters, and market events. Also, pay a special visit to the demonstrations brought to you by woodworks who happily engage with market-goers as they share their artistry and culture. The Ice at Carter Green is open throughout the market and they offer ice skating in the middle of the market for a very reasonable fee. Further, look for events like Santa Sundays and Cookie Decorating to get the whole family involved.
The Carmel Indiana Christmas Market runs from mid-November to the end of December. There is always something new to explore and discover that you haven’t before. One year we waited in line for 45 minutes to grab a raclette sandwich. Worth every minute. I was very happy to discover their chai-flavored apple-spiced cider by the time we got to the front. Over a million people have wandered to downtown Carmel, Indiana over the years to attend this special market. This Indiana Christmas Market offers a donation drive for the duration of the event. Later, check the website for information on how to get involved with charity work for different local organizations.
I’m Diana Ratcliff, a local photographer, and lover of all traditions. One tradition in my family is our yearly family portrait session. My children are all older now but when they were younger, I remember it being a difficult task to manage at times. Coordinating outfits, scheduling and checking in with our photographer, and getting everyone to cooperate the day of about took it out of me! I am passionate about providing families with the opportunity to set back and relax before, during, and after their sessions. With over 15 years of providing exceptional service to families, I have all the tips and tricks for making memories in the short time we have together. I’m honored each time I’m chosen to collect moments and then commemorate them for you. Let’s chat about the archival and fine art products I offer to clients.