By Kayla Caldwell
Ah, the Christmas season is upon us yet again. Can’t you just smell the old banana peels, pudding, and Who-hash? Perhaps it’s not for everyone - but, one thing we can probably all agree on is the delight that is a fully-lit, decked-out Christmas tree. And, boy, is the Grinchmas tree decked out. My colleagues and I couldn’t stop staring at the glittering, gold star tree-topper that was almost as mesmerizing as Jafar’s staff. (Wrong property? My bad. I was distracted by something shiny.)
You also don’t have to worry about snacking on cupcakes made of broken glass or bugs picked from the trash, because there are plenty of thematic (but not too thematic) “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” treats for the rest of us. Case in point, these Grinchmas mini donuts that have me seeing green!
There’s plenty to do in Who-ville, such as a photo op with the green man himself, Mr. Grinch. For the dog lovers - er, I mean “reindeer” lovers out there, you can also meet Max. And if you’re lucky, he might even rest his precious little paw on your shoulder while you pose for a photo. I may or may not have burst into tears.
Plenty of other entertaining Who’s wander the area, which also has a station where you can make your own heart grow three sizes* by writing down three good deeds you’ve done this year, and mailing it to the Grinch himself. Fun fact: for each card mailed to the Grinch, Universal Studios Hollywood’s Discover a Star Foundation will make a donation to School on Wheels. Talk about getting into the Christmas spirit!
There are a myriad of enviable goodies for purchase at the Who-bilation, such as a green onesie that would even make the Grinch smile. But don’t get too distracted by the souvenirs to miss out on the tree lighting, because it is a thing of wonder. We were lucky enough to witness a reading of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” from Mario Lopez, who was later joined by Cindy Lou Who and the Grinch himself for the tree lighting.
But don’t fret - even if Mario can’t be there for every ceremony, the citizens of Whoville won’t let you down! It’s a truly special moment to see the twinkling lights climb up the crooked, colorful tree.
After your Seussical visit, make your way to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, where you can see the enchanting new light show, “The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle.” If you feel a bit of a chill while waiting for the show, you can always swing by the Three Broomsticks for a festive cup of hot Butterbeer. That is seasonal, and, trust me, you do not want to miss it.
Hogsmeade also boasts festive ware, such as holiday ornaments, stockings, and tree toppers. And you can grab a satisfying, holiday dinner at the Three Broomsticks. That is - if you haven’t already filled up on a “roast beast” sandwich or Who-hash.
From the mesmerizing decorations to the snowfall during the tree lighting, Grinchmas at Universal Studios Hollywood is an absolutely magical holiday experience. Step into your favorite holiday classics with a trip to Whoville or buy yourself a sweater just like Ron’s mom makes in Hogsmeade. The possibilities are endless — well, until the celebration ends on December 29. So what are you waiting for?