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Holiday Guide: Everything you need to know about celebrating the holidays in Colorado

Even in a safe, socially-distanced way, there's so much to enjoy in Denver and Colorado during the holiday season.

DENVER — It's the holiday season, the most wonderful time of the year.

And so to help make sure you make the most of it, we've put together this guide to make sure you what to cook for Thanksgiving, the best places to celebrate the season and when to ship your gifts so they arrive on time.

Start making your plans now. From holiday markets to shopping and baking and wrapping, there's a lot going to around Colorado this holiday season.

This 9NEWS Holiday Guide will continue to grow through New Year's. We'll be adding helpful links, recipes and Colorado-specific winter season events throughout the season, so bookmark this page and check back often.

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Shopping season

Getting the perfect gift for that special someone or the person in your family who is difficult to shop for can be stressful, but that doesn't mean picking out gifts can't be fun. Here are resources to help you navigate the holiday season in stores or online.

Credit: U.S. Postal Service

Holiday Shipping

Before you take your shopping list and check it twice, do you know the shipping deadlines to ensure your gifts arrive on time for Christmas? Here are the USPS shipping deadlines to keep in mind if your want your package to be delivered before Dec. 25:

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Giving back

While you're out grinding the shopping aisles trying to find the perfect gift or chowing down some delicious food, remember: Not everyone is as fortunate. The holidays are the perfect season for giving back.

Credit: Downtown Denver Partnership

9NEWS Parade of Lights

Although the traditional two-night 9NEWS Parade of Lights will not take place this year, the public will be able to view eight floats from the parade at locations throughout downtown Denver. The floats will be available for viewing for five weeks from Friday, Nov. 27 through Thursday, Dec. 31 at locations including Denver Pavilions and Denver Union Station.

9NEWS Parade of Lights mascot Major Waddles will also be ready to celebrate the season at these downtown locations with hot cocoa and treats.

The 16th Street Mall, Denver Union Station, Larimer Square and the Dairy Block will be decorated with holiday lights throughout the season. Downtown Denver’s major landmarks will light up during a Grand Illumination ceremony on Friday, Nov. 27.

Use the QR code below to download the free 9News Parade of Lights app to unlock a map of the festive floats you know and love, sprinkled throughout Downtown Denver. March to the beat of your own drum and plan your Parade route quickly and easily with the exclusive app. Available for iOS and Android. 

Credit: 9NEWS

READ MORE: 9NEWS Parade of Lights to be multi-week celebration

RELATED: 9NEWS Parade of Lights Holiday Special

WATCH: 9NEWS Parade of Lights in 2019

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Christmas lights

Show your fellow Coloradans the best lights in your neighborhood by uploading them to the "Near Me" section of the 9NEWS app. Your photos will be added to a statewide map highlighting the best places to see light displays around the state.

Here's how the 9NEWS Christmas Lights Map works.

> DOWNLOAD APP FOR IPHONE HERE
> DOWNLOAD APP FOR ANDROID HERE

Credit: Denver Christkindl Market

Holiday festivities

Even without annual live productions of "The Nutcracker" and "A Christmas Carol," there will still be opportunities to soak in the sights, sounds and smells of the holiday season in Colorado.

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Holiday TV, movies & music

Would you rather spend your holiday season snuggled up under a blanket with a mug of hot chocolate watching movies? Here's what will be on.

Credit: 9NEWS

Christmas trees

From Rockefeller Center and Washington, D.C. to Castle Rock and Kremmling, massive Christmas trees are a festive sign of the season.

In 2020, the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree was harvested from western Colorado. The 55-foot tall Engelmann spruce harvested near Delta will arrive at the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building on Friday, Nov. 20.

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Food and recipes

Food is a favorite part of the Christmas season for everyone. Here are some must-try holiday recipes.

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Thanksgiving

Like all things in 2020, Thanksgiving might be a little different this year. Thanksgiving arrives Thursday, Nov. 26 and you can still count on turkey, stuffing, 5K runs, football and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on 9NEWS.

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Holiday hiring

Whether you're looking for a full-time or part-time job, companies across Colorado are hiring for the busy holiday season. Do you know of a business hiring for the holidays? Share the job listing with us. Some of the companies hiring for the holidays in Colorado include:

The 9NEWS Holiday Guide is always a work in progress and we'll be adding helpful links, recipes, events and Colorado-specific Christmas-season events.

What would you like to see in our Holiday Guide? What part of the holidays in Colorado are you curious to know more about? Drop us a line.

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