I can't remember our family having holiday parties, just the family get together for Christmas. There were always Christmas parties at church and school which were fun. Except that I can remember one year at school the person who got my name didn't get me a gift. I had been so excited buying a gift for the person who's name I had and then I didn't get anything. Mom told me it was probably because the child's parents didn't have the money to buy even a small gift. Which I'm sure is the reason most schools don't allow gift exchanges. It was sad but, I survived.
The holiday parties which come to mind most are the ones from the company my husband worked for when our children were small. They had a company Christmas party on the first Saturday of December. It was on Saturday morning and it was for the children of the employees. They had Christmas shows to watch, crafts to make, snacks to eat and the best part for the kids was at the very end. Santa came and let every kid set in his lap. Our kids looked forward to the party! We have pictures somewhere!