Christmastime with Mister Rogers is a prime-time television special based on the series Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.
Mr. Rogers greets several of his neighbors as he walks through his neighborhood on the way to the television house. Mr. McFeely gives him a box with instructions and says not to open it until he has reached the house and changed his sweater. Waiting to do so, Mr. Rogers finds a new pair of sneakers, which is just what he needed, and a Christmas card from the McFeelys.
Thankful for the gift from his friends, Mr. Rogers talks about his Christmas wish for viewers: "I've been thinking about what I'd like to give you for Christmas. I'd really like to give you something that just fits your own wishes and needs the way these shoes just fit me. I suppose the thing I'd like most to be able to give you is hope. Hope that through your own doing and your own living with others, you'll be able to find what best fits for you in this life. But this hour of television is something I can give you. And we all hope you'll feel very welcome."
After three young carolers sing "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" outside Mr. Rogers' window, he receives a phone call from Mrs. McFeely letting him know that Mr. McFeely will be stopping by. As he waits, Mr. Rogers remembers many special people who have visited his neighborhood over the years. Mr. McFeely stops by on his way to the rehearsal for the holiday get-together. He mentions that Stephanie, a young girl in the neighborhood who will be performing a dance, is quite disappointed that her family may miss it due to car trouble.
Mr. Rogers goes with Mr. McFeely to the rehearsal where Stephanie shares her disappointment with him. Francois Clemmons details a recent dream in which the members of his traveling choir lose their voices and experience trouble with their bus as they travel. They are helped by the Music Man--a magical musician who sings "Rise Up Shepherds and Follow" as Francois works on the broken bus. He is surprised to find that the Music Man is able to provide them with the ability to play music without any instruments. As they do, Francois sings "Silent Night."
Stephanie joins Mr. Rogers as he returns to his house where they talk about how hard it is to wait for things you are looking forward to. Mrs. Hamilton stops by to borrow some eggs but Mr. Rogers does not have enough. After a quick call to Chef Brockett, she is gone as quickly as she has arrived. Stephanie makes up a story about the Music Man helping Mrs. Hamilton find some eggs after her stubborn hens give her none.
Mr. Rogers opens a gift from a friend--a small banner that says "Merry Christmas" on one side and "Happy Chanukah" on the other. Taking out a dreidel, he spends some time talking about Chanukah as he plays and sings "The Dreidel Song."
In the Neighborhood of Make-Believe, presents are not to be opened until King Friday XIII gives his permission. Lady Elaine Fairchild tells Handyman Negri that she is upset at having received only one present. When Mr. McFeely arrives with several packages to deliver, she and Handyman Negri offer to help him as she is left with her frustrations. As the presents are delivered, she finds that the others in the Neighborhood have received many more than her. To show her feelings at being slighted, she turns everything in the Neighborhood upside down--everything except the Music Man who is able to use his magic stick to keep himself right side up. Everything returns to normal when he gives her an ice skating experience--a gift that does not need to be wrapped.
When King Friday gives the word, presents are allowed to be opened throughout the Neighborhood--the first being a Christmas decoration for Lady Elaine which is put together in parts by all of her neighbors.
Back at the house, Mr. Rogers talks about different families traditions--Christmas, Chanukah, and those who celebrate neither. He suggests that all presents are a sign of love.
Stephanie makes up another story about the Music Man who finds himself in a remote village where a young boy is missing. With the boy's father and sister, the Music Man searches the open land. Climbing to the highest point they can find, they sing "My Sheep Were Grazing", which is heard by the lost boy. Following the sound of their voices, he finds his way home.
At the get-together, everyone sings "Joy to the World" as Stephanie prepares for her performance. She is overjoyed when Stanley Clay arrives with her family. As everyone sings "The Friendly Beasts", she proudly performs her dance on the stage.
Returning to the house, Mr. Rogers concludes, "I, for one, wish you good memories of this holiday. And I hope you'll be able to look for all the different ways that people have of showing that they love you."