This article is a part of the 2023 Winter Travel Guide, a sponsored collection brought to you by our travel advertising partners. You can find more winter travel destinations and events here.

You might know Rockwall, Texas, to be the smallest county in the state of Texas, but when it comes to holidays, this charming lakeside town goes all out with a remarkable production. Located 20 miles east of Dallas, Rockwall sits on the shore of Lake Ray Hubbard, encompassed by a community that stands apart from any other in the area.  With its array of local eateries, distinctive boutiques, deep-rooted history, and friendly residents, a trip to Rockwall is a guaranteed delightful experience.

Just a little over six years ago, Governor Greg Abbott signed a House Concurrent Resolution, which designated the city of Rockwall the official Free Live Music Capital of North Texas. Residents take pride in this title because music is deeply ingrained in every facet of Rockwall and its community. From January 1 to December 31, you can always catch talented local musicians putting on a show around the area, keeping everyone entertained. With a variety of restaurants, venues, and amphitheaters, there is always a free show to attend.

Rockwall is renowned for its community-oriented festivals and activities that provide opportunities for local engagement. These include events like the seasonal San Jacinto Plaza Music Series, the Downtown Farmer’s Market, Rockwall Founders Day, Scare on the Square, the Hometown Christmas Festival and Parade, the Holiday Home Tour, Shop Small Saturday, and a variety of other captivating occasions for residents and visitors to enjoy. Hometown Christmas takes place every year on the first Saturday in December. This is a well-known and beloved event for the Rockwall community, and is highly anticipated every holiday season. We are thrilled to add Skate the Lake – Rockwall on Ice to the holiday fun!

After many years of planning, 2022 was the year a new holiday tradition was established in the Rockwall community. The Rockwall Area Chamber of Commerce & Visitor’s Center partnered with The City of Rockwall to introduce the inaugural Skate the Lake – Rockwall on Ice to the area. With the expertise of a professional ice-skating company called Ice Stars and support from the main sponsor, Clay Cooley of Hyundai in Rockwall, Skate the Lake – Rockwall on Ice quickly became a brand-new favorite holiday tradition for both kids and adults within the Rockwall community. Over the course of 32 days when the ice rink was open, more than 7,500 people went skating, and the Harbor District welcomed more than 10,000 tourists and locals. While out on the ice, it was quite usual to come across Santa leisurely strolling around the Harbor District. Guests could also bask in live music and make the most of enticing specials offered by local restaurants in the area.

This year, the Rockwall Area Chamber of Commerce & Visitor’s Center is thrilled to declare their collaboration with The City of Rockwall for a second consecutive year, bringing back the ice-skating rink to the community for the 2023 holiday season! Anticipate an array of themed nights, live music, exclusive offers from local hotels and restaurants, a special appearance by Santa, and much more! Additionally, private skating sessions will be available for booking, catering to holiday parties, birthdays, team outings, and tailored discounted evenings for various professions. Alongside the exciting enhancements set for Skate the Lake, the opening day is scheduled for November 18, providing the perfect start to the holiday festivities. Keep an eye out for ticket release updates, so you too can incorporate this into your holiday family traditions!

You might be wondering, is there really more to explore in Rockwall than what’s already available? Well, let’s not overlook our local wineries, breweries, museums, and parks. And this year, get ready to spot your favorite restaurants, shops, and performers at Skate the Lake, taking part in the Family Fun Day. This special day is designed for both residents and visitors, offering everyone the chance to relish the ice rink experience. Expect to witness performances by professional Olympic skaters, enjoy food and drink samples, snag some Skate the Lake merchandise, engage in kid-friendly activities, and much more! We’re eagerly anticipating the arrival of new visitors to the Rockwall community and are thrilled to welcome back Skate the Lake – Rockwall on Ice for its second year! Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Images Courtesy of Jack Palmer Photos

For more information, please visit We can’t wait to see you soon!