Your handy guide to Christmas specials on television | Opinion

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Ah, yes, it’s the time of year when every television network and streaming service loads up on holiday content.  It’s also the time of year when my friend Shay Watson, one of the staff composers for the Hallmark Channel, wears out a path from his mailbox to the bank with all those royalty checks. 

For us, it’s hard to keep track of what channel is airing which program, when. I also threw in some of our local events to remind you of those, too. 

“Frosty the Snowman” and “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” have already aired for the first time on CBS – but they are available on Paramount+ all the way through to Christmas. “A Charlie Brown Christmas” is now only available on AppleTV+, but it’s free to stream between December 22-25. And before you read this, NBC will have already decorated the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center and Michael Buble will have already hosted another Christmas special.  But wait, there’s more!

 

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 2

Holiday Market, 2:00-8:00 p.m., Veterans Park

Christmas Tree Lighting, 6:00 p.m., Veterans Park

Sounds of the Season, 8:00 p.m., Restoration 49 Coffee House

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 3

Tallassee Christmas Parade, 10:00 a.m.

Train Ride for Children, 10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Santa Claus, 11:30 a.m.-2:00 p.m., Grove Station

“The Little Drummer Boy,” 6:00 a.m., FreeForm

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” 8:15 p.m., FreeForm

“Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town,” 9:50 p.m., Freeform

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 4

“The Nightmare Before Christmas,” 1:20 p.m., FreeForm

“Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town,” 3:00 p.m., FreeForm

“Christmas in Connecticut,” 3:00 p.m., AMC

“Frosty the Snowman,” 4:00 p.m., FreeForm

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” 4:30 p.m., FreeForm

“White Christmas,” 9:30 p.m., AMC

MONDAY, DECEMBER 5

“The Singing Nun,” 3:30 p.m., TCM

“Home Alone 2: Lost in New York,” 5:15 p.m., FreeForm

“The Polar Express,” 6:00 p.m., AMC

“Scrooged,” 7:55 p.m., FreeForm 

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 6

“Elf,” 6:00 p.m., AMC

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” 8:00 p.m., AMC

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 7

“The Santa Clause,” 3:30 p.m., FreeForm

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” 5:00 p.m., AMC

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 8

“Prancer,” 1:00 p.m., FreeForm

“Disney’s A Christmas Carol,” 3:00 p.m., FreeForm

“Planes, Trains, and Automobiles,” 5:00 p.m., AMC

Southside Middle School Band Christmas Concert, 6:30 p.m., SMS Gymnasium

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9

“A Christmas Carol,” Restoration 49 Coffee House, presented by McCraney-Cottle Arts Council and Grove Station (for more details, contact the Tallassee Chamber of Commerce at 334-283-5151.)

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 10

“Frozen,” 5:20 p.m., FreeForm

“Kirk Franklin Gospel Christmas,” 7:00 p.m., Lifetime

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“Miracle on 34th Street,” 10:30 p.m., FreeForm

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 11 

“National Christmas Tree Lighting: Celebrating 100 Years,” 7:00 p.m., CBS (WAKA-TV 8). This broadcast from Washington, D.C. includes performances by the United States Marine Band, L.L. Cool J, Andy Grammer, Shania Twain, Gloria Estefan, and Joss Stone. 

MONDAY, DECEMBER 12

“A Saturday Night Live Christmas Special,” 7:00 p.m., NBC (WSFA-TV 12 

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 13

“Mister Magoo’s Christmas,” 6:00 a.m., FreeForm

“Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic,” 9:30 a.m., FreeForm

Tallassee High School Choir and Band Christmas Concert, 7:00 p.m., Stumberg (New) Gym

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 15

“It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie,” 6:00 a.m., FreeForm. 

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 17

“The Year Without a Santa Claus,” 8:00 a.m., AMC 

“King of Kings,” 4:00 p.m., TCM

“The Greatest Story Ever Told,” 7:00 p.m., TCM 

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 18

“Meet Me in St. Louis,” 7:00 p.m., TCM

MONDAY, DECEMBER 19

“Scrooged,” 3:30 p.m., FreeForm 

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 20

“Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas to All!”, 7:00 p.m., CBS (WAKA-TV 8).  

“Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town,” 7:00 p.m., ABC (WNCF-TV 32)

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 21

“Dolly Parton’s Mountain Magic Christmas,” 7:00 p.m., NBC (WSFA-TV 12), guest starring Willie Nelson, Jimmy Fallon, Miley Cyrus, and more. 

“Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town,” FreeForm

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 22

“The Star,” 3:30 p.m., FreeForm

“Frosty the Snowman,” 6:30 p.m., FreeForm

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” 7:00 p.m., FreeForm

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 23

“M*A*S*H,” 6:00 p.m., MeTV. Two back-to-back episodes centered around the holiday at the 4077th are two of the best of the entire series. 

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” 7:00 p.m., NBC (WSFA-TV 12) This original adaptation from 1966 was animated by the legendary Chuck Jones. Immediately following this airing is another Dolly Parton special, this one a movie about her “coat of many colors.” 

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 24 – CHRISTMAS EVE

“It’s a Wonderful Life,” 7:00 p.m., NBC (WSFA-TV 12).  

“Home Alone,” 7:00 p.m., ABC (WNCF-TV 32). 

“Christmas Eve Mass,” 10:30 p.m., NBC (WSFA-TV 12). Pope Francis leads Christmas Eve Mass from St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. 

DECEMBER 25 – CHRISTMAS DAY

“A Christmas Story,” airing all day long on TBS and TNT.  

“Disney Parks Magical Christmas Day Parade,” 9:00 p.m., ABC (WNCF-TV 32 

“The Waltons,” airing all day long on MeTV. Back-to-back Christmas episodes featuring your favorite Depression-era family.

“Holiday Greetings from the Ed Sullivan Show,” 7:00 p.m., MeTV. 

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 28

“The Gift: Kindness Goes Viral,” 8:00 p.m., CBS (WAKA-TV 8).  Now, here’s one I’ve been waiting for.  Steve Hartman – the modern-day Charles Kuralt – spent the year traveling the country in his ‘on the road’ segments for CBS News. This program will feature some of the best of Hartman’s work, and if you’re looking for heartwarming programming that showcases the best of us, this will be it. 





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