One of our favorite things to do around Christmas time is visit living Nativities. We love the focus it gives our family about the real meaning of Christmas and not just presents. We visited at live Nativity called Night in Bethlehem held at Stone Gate Weddings in Pleasant Grove. For a few days, volunteers help you travel back in time to the night that Jesus Christ was born. You are spending a night in Bethlehem.
A Night in Bethlehem requires a reservation, but tickets are free. You are welcome to donate when you get your tickets, but it is not required. They do ask that you bring one food bank donation as your tax to pay to enter the city of Bethlehem. This is one of our favorite parts is turning in our food to Caesar.
Everyone gathers in a large room to wait together before heading into Bethlehem. This is to allow the group ahead of you to finish and move out. Bethlehem is a bustling town and there are a lot of activities going on. This is such a fun spot for the kids. The town has weaving, carpentry, school, baking, games, and more. They always have a little dance for the children, too.
Make sure to stop at the clothing area and let your children try on some authentic clothes. Our boys thought it was fun to fit in the Bethlehem era style.
After you spend some time in Bethlehem, everyone gathers to witness the events of the night of the Savior’s birth. You watch as Mary (very pregnant) and Joseph find no room in the inn and finally find refuge in a stable.
Then you move rooms and visit the shepherd’s hill where the angel tells them of the birth of Jesus Christ. You also see the wise men arrive with their gifts for the baby. There are musical numbers and a narrator as you watch the actors reenact this story. It was very touching to watch Mary and Joseph try to keep the baby calm.
Finally they usher you out to a room where there are nativities on display and music playing.
We loved this portrayal. And we really love that it is all indoors, so you can enjoy it no matter the weather. Night in Bethlehem takes about 45 minutes from the time they started until the time we walked out. They start sessions every 30 minutes between 5:30 pm and 8:00 pm. For current information, visit their website. They ask that you reserve a time beforehand, but admission is free.
We have a list of about 20 live Nativities happening in Utah if you are looking for one closer to you. Check out our full list here: Live Nativities in Utah.
Stone Gate Weddings in located in Pleasant Grove, about 1/2 mile east of the Mt. Timpanogos LDS temple at 886 West 2600 North. From 1-15, take American Fork Main Street/Pioneer Crossing east toward the mountains. Turn north (left) onto 1100 East (North County Blvd). Drive past American Fork Hospital up the hill to 700 North in American Fork. The temple will be in front of you on your left. Turn right on 700 North which changes to 2600 North when you cross into Pleasant Grove. Stone Gate is located on the left (north) side of the road.