Trans-Siberian Orchestra Concert Slated for December 5

The holiday season is not complete without a holiday concert. And when it comes to the most-loved seasonal songs, Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s holiday performance can’t be beat.

TSO1 Trans Siberian Orchestra Concert Slated for December 5

Trans-Siberian Orchestra, also known as “TSO” by many fans, will perform live at 8 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 5 at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum as part of “The Christmas Attic” tour. TSO is an American progressive rock band founded in 1996. The band is best known by their signature hit “Carol of the Bells” as well as the light show, lasers, video screens and other visuals that accompany each performance.

The event venue is located at 4000 Parnell Ave., on the city’s north side and conveniently near lodging, dining and shopping options. Tickets are on sale now and start at $32 each. They can be purchased in person at the box office, online at or by phone by calling 800.745.3000. Be sure to bring cash for parking which ranges from $5 to $8 depending on proximity to the venue.

Insider Tip: I attended a TSO concert in the Fort a few years ago. Truly there is no bad seat in the house at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. The light displays orchestrated for this show are half the entertainment. You will be amazed!


Previously a news reporter at daily newspapers in Indiana and Ohio, Holly Hammersmith now enjoys the lighter side of writing through freelance work. In her spare time, Holly can be found running or practicing yoga. She also enjoys visiting local coffee shops and day-tripping. Holly lives with her husband, dog Lulu and half a dozen houseplants. Find Holly on Twitter @HFHammers and at

The Nutcracker: A Fort Wayne Ballet Holiday Tradition

FWBalletWEB 522x392 300x225 The Nutcracker: A Fort Wayne Ballet Holiday Tradition

A holiday classic that many families look forward to every year is Fort Wayne Ballet’s The Nutcracker. Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker is the story of a young girl named Clara, who gets the gift of a nutcracker at a fabulous holiday party from her godfather.  When Clara falls asleep after the party, she enters the Nutcracker’s world in her dreams, where a giant, living Nutcracker must fight the Mouse King’s army and later, enter the Kingdom of Sweets.

But this is not the same ballet as years past.  The Fort Wayne Ballet strives to make changes every year that will enhance the story and make it a more visually beautiful performance. This year, new backdrops will be featured in the party scene and the snow section.  Besides new set additions, there will also be new characters, including a male dancer who appears with the Dewdrop ballerina, as well as magical unicorns that make an appearance for the first time in The Nutcracker.

Nutcracker 2014 3507 300x212 The Nutcracker: A Fort Wayne Ballet Holiday Tradition

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Photo credit: Fort Wayne Ballet

The Fort Wayne Ballet’s commitment to adding new elements every year enhances the show’s experience while keeping audience members on their toes for new surprises.  Even with the additional elements throughout the show, the Nutcracker maintains the delightful traditions that make this holiday classic so special.  The party scene transports audience members of all ages as mischievous children, dancing guests, and live animals make an entrance onto the stage.

But the dazzling party scene is only a prelude to the enchantment of the dream world, where Clara and the Nutcracker go to a land of snow, an enchanted winter wonderland with dancing snowflakes. They also meet the Sugar Plum Fairy, who rewards them with dances from around the world, including Arabian, Chinese and Spanish dancers. The last number comes from the Sugar Plum Fairy and the dashing Cavalier who enchant us with their finale, a pas de deux.

Beautiful sets, magical characters, and special surprises await children and adults of all ages in this holiday classic. Fort Wayne Ballet’s presentation of The Nutcracker is a wonderful tradition to add to your family holiday experience this Christmas.


Friday, December 5, 2014 |  7:30pm*

Saturday, December 6, 2014 | 2:30pm*

Saturday, December 6, 2014 | 7:30pm*

Sunday, December 7, 2014 | 2:30pm

Tuesday, December 9, 2014 | 7:30pm

Friday, December 12, 2014 | 7:30pm

Saturday, December 13, 2014 | 2:30pm

Saturday, December 13, 2014 | 7:30pm

Sunday, December 14, 2014 | 2:30pm


Sugar Plum Parties | after matinee performances | $8

* Performance with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic

** All performances are at the Arts United Center


ADULT TICKET PRICES: $43.50 (Regular Seating Area) and $49 (Premium Seating Area).Discounts available for Seniors (Ages 60+), Youth (Ages 11-18), and Children (Ages 3-9).

Please call the Box Office at 260.422.4226 for more information or order tickets online.



Sara Ward


Sara Ward is a writer, actress, speaker, teacher, and author of the award-winning play, Skid. She has also written nonfiction articles featured in several publications and short scripts that have been performed around the United States and Canada. She lives in Fort Wayne with her husband and daughter. You can read more of her writings on her blog, Poets and Saints.

A Christmas Mystery/Comedy…Just for Fun!

Untitled1 A Christmas Mystery/Comedy…Just for Fun!If you’ve never been to a Bower North Productions mystery/comedy, you’ve missed a lot of fun. But no fear, your opportunity is here. Bower North is presenting a public audience-participation mystery, “John Fieldstone and the Christmas Island Caper” on Friday December 5th at the Hotel Fort Wayne, 305 E. Washington Center Road.

You’ll get to match wits with Bower North’s iconic and hapless Detective (some say defective) John Fieldstone. A cast of colorful characters are suspected of a diamond theft but Detective Fieldstone is confident he can solve the crime. Audience members will fill out a crime report with their best answer. One will be honored as the Super Sleuth of the Evening. The rest will die laughing at this original romp from Bower North Productions.

Bower North President Larry Bower says, “The evening will be one of delicious food and delightful fun. It’s the perfect holiday getaway for couples, or for smaller companies wanting to have a staff Christmas party without the trouble of finding a venue, ordering food, and hiring entertainment.” Doors will open at 6 p.m. with a cash bar at 6:30 and a holiday buffet at 7, followed by the show. For reservations, call Carol at Hotel Fort Wayne, 260-484-0411 x318.

Bower North Productions presents mysteries and Vaudeville comedy all year long for companies, churches and non-profits. You can learn more at



Come see Stephanie and Megan in the Fort Wayne-Allen County Visitors Center located at 927 S. Harrison Street. They are passionate about all that Fort Wayne offers and love to give personalized information regarding restaurants, hotels, attractions, festivals, and more. You can also get maps, brochures, and a Visitors Guide. Fort Wayne merchandise and souvenirs are also available for purchase.

Straight No Chaser comes to the Embassy and you can WIN TICKETS!

The explosion of Pitch Perfect as one of the top-grossing movies of its season put a cappella music back on the map. While I’m sure we all love listening to the Bellas belt it out during the movie, it’s even better seeing and hearing groups perform in person. Don’t miss your chance to see one of the best a cappella groups in the country, Straight No Chaser, at Fort Wayne’s historic Embassy Theatre when they travel here December 16.

straight no chaserWEB 300x225 Straight No Chaser comes to the Embassy and you can WIN TICKETS!

Straight No Chaser is not your stereotypical a cappella group of college males singing outdated tunes in suit jackets and khaki pants. This talented group of men sing a variety of songs from covers of Adele and Ed Sheeran to songs with contributions from Phil Collins and Dolly Parton. The voices of these 10 men combine to create amazing vocal achievements that sound as if they are made by an orchestra of instruments and a choir of singers.

Their US and UK tour, Happy Hour, comes right after the release of their latest album, “Under the Influence.” This latest album features a number of holiday songs too, to put you in the mood of the season!

While you are in downtown Fort Wayne, make an evening of it! Stop by one of the local restaurants before the show. Calhoun Street Soups, Salads, and Spirits is just down the road from the Embassy. And even though it might be cold, it would be a great evening to see the Christmas lights that will be up around downtown. Straight No Chaser begins at 7:30 so there will be plenty of time for dinner before and it will be dark enough when you leave to enjoy the holiday season!

And, you can win tickets to the show here!

Holley Taylor


Holley is a student at Albion College in Michigan studying English with a Creative Writing Emphasis and History. She is excited to be back in her hometown this summer working as a Marketing Intern for Visit Fort Wayne. Holley enjoys reading, writing, dancing, and spending time with family and friends.

Kick off the holiday season with the Embassy Theatre’s Festival of Trees

FullSizeRender 300x300 Kick off the holiday season with the Embassy Theatres Festival of Trees

Last year’s Festival of Trees was one of my favorites!

There’s something magical about the holiday season. Everyone is a little cheerier, the cold weather feels more festive than troublesome, houses are decked out in twinkling lights, and Christmas trees are put up and decorated for all to see. To top it all off, Fort Wayne goes all out to usher in the holiday season. From the big Holidayfest kickoff at the Night of Lights, to the illuminated displays you’ll find around town all throughout the season, Fort Wayne is doing it right! Out of all of the great events you’ll find throughout Holidayfest, the Embassy Theatre Festival of Trees is by far my favorite, and it will be yours too!

Each year the Embassy Theatre puts on the Festival of Trees – a festival where trees of all shapes and sizes are decorated elaborately in celebration of the holiday season. While the Festival of Trees is a wonderful display of all things wondrous and magical, it also serves a bigger purpose. Since its start in 1984, the Embassy Festival of Trees has served as a community goodwill event that supports the continuous operational and restoration efforts of the Embassy Theatre Foundation, Inc.. Each intricately, and sometimes gloriously over the top, tree is decorated and/or sponsored by a local group or business, adding even more the true community feel of the event.

This is one of Fort Wayne’s favorite holiday festivals, hands down! Year after year, more and more people are discovering the fun and beauty that is the Festival of Trees. Not only are there gaggles of intricately decorated trees all around the Embassy Theatre and Indiana Hotel lobby, but there are also live performances from some of the areas most talented singers, dancers and musicians. I can guarantee that even the most Grinch-like person will be transformed after walking through the magical hallways filled with holiday cheer (and lights and glitter and ribbon!).

The Embassy Theatre Festival of Trees kicks off on downtown Fort Wayne’s Night of Lights on November, 26th, and continues through Wednesday, December 3rd. While the window to attend the festival is limited, it is worth working it into your plans!

The full schedule for the Festival of Trees is as follows:
Night of Lights, Wed., Nov. 26, 6-9 p.m.
Thurs., Nov. 27, 4-8 p.m. (featuring Grande Page Organ music)
Fri.-Sun., Nov. 28- Nov. 30, 12-8 p.m. (youth entertainment on the Embassy stage)
Mon., Dec. 1, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Senior Day (open to the public, special information for Seniors)
Tues., Dec. 2, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Wed., Dec. 3, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Tots and Trees (open to the public, special activities for kids)

Don’t miss out! Make the Festival of Trees a new tradition with your family and friends! Admission to the festival is $7 for adults and $3 for children ages 4-12. Children 3 and under are FREE. For ticket information call the Embassy Theatre box office at 800.745.3000, or visit ticketmaster. For more information on the Festival of Trees, and all of the other great Holidayfest events, check out Visit Fort Wayne.



Katie Robinson simply loves Fort Wayne! Born and raised in the Summit City, she returned following graduating from Ball State University with a degree in Public Relations in May of 2013. A former Visit Fort Wayner, Katie currently works for the Fort Wayne-Allen County Airport Authority as the Marketing and Customer Service Specialist. In her spare time you can find her baking cupcakes, Zumba-ing her heart out and relaxing with her husband, Joe, and their adorable Shih Tzu, Gidget.