‘Tis the season for cooking Thanksgiving dinner, cutting down your Christmas tree, lighting the menorah, and taking out the Mkeka! From seasonal markets to live performances, the Hudson Valley offers plenty of events for all to enjoy this joyful season.
Winter Walk on Warren Street
Bundle up the tots on December 1 and head to Warren Street from 5-8pm for a magical evening as holiday cheer transforms Hudson's mile-long main street. You'll be walking in a winter wonderland with illuminated storefront displays worthy of A Christmas Story; roaming carolers; and Santa, Mrs. Claus, and their real-life reindeer. Cap off your Winter Walk on Warren Street with a fireworks display over the Hudson River.
Rhinebeck connects with its Dutch roots through this Christmas tradition, when Bishop Nicholas Sinterklaas, the patron saint of children, parades down the street on a white horse with an entourage of kings and queens, animals, and celestial bodies. The Hudson Valley's Sinterklaas festivities fuse old customs with new interpretations for an inclusive, cross-cultural celebration. Festival Day in Rhinebeck on December 1; Sinterklaas send-off in Kingston November 24.
"Into the Light"
A multicultural pageant presented by the Vanaver Caravan and Arm-of-the-Sea Puppet Theatre, "Into the Light" combines live music, puppetry, storytelling, and dances from all over the world honoring such holidays as Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, Yule, Winter Solstice, Sankta Lucia (Sweden), and Diwali (India) at Kaatsbaan International Dance Center in Tivoli. December 8-9
Lea DeLaria: "Oh F*k It's Christmas"
You probably know her as Big Boo from "Orange Is the New Black." What you probably didn't know is that Lea DeLaria is also a jazz singer and stand-up comic. She performs an extra sassy concert of holiday favorites with her jazz ensemble at the Fisher Center at Bard College on December 8 at 7:30pm.
When Santa turns up missing, the girls use their talent and creativity to save their annual holiday party! This Shadowland Stages production features great '60s versions of holiday classics such as "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town," "Jingle Bell Rock," "Run, Rudolph, Run," and "Winter Wonderland." November 30-December 16.
Mountain Laurel Winter Faire
New Paltz's Waldorf school, Mountain Laurel, hosts its annual winter faire on December 9, from 11am-4pm, with gift making, wreath decorating, crafters, and roasted chestnuts and other holiday treats.
"The Nutcracker," with its fanciful story, timeless musical themes, and tantalizing confections, makes for the perfect family outing. The New Paltz Ballet Theatre performs this holiday classic with principal dancers from the New York City Ballet at Bardavon in Poughkeepsie on December 7-9.
Unison Craft Fair
Twenty-four master craftspeople and fine artists display a wide range of handmade crafts, including pottery, jewelry, fiber, woodwork, herbal products, baskets, and paintings at Unison Arts Center in New Paltz. Enjoy a local and intimate shopping on December 1-2.
Garrison Art Center Pottery Sale
The GAC's Annual Holiday Pottery Show & Sale is back this year November 16-25. Shop locally while supporting ceramic artists and the pottery program at Garrison Art Center. The pieces range from whimsical to highly sophisticated and include sculptural works as well as some items for children.
Pajama-clad passengers will see their favorite characters come to life aboard the Catskill Mountain Railroad's Polar Express, as they are whisked away on a magical trip to the North Pole from Kingston Plaza. During the journey, the conductor will punch tickets while chefs serve hot chocolate to the music of the motion picture soundtrack. At the North Pole, Santa will board the train to greet the children and give special sleigh bells to all those who believe. November 16-December 23.
Celebration of Lights Parade & Fireworks
Voted by Dutchess County Tourism as the "Best Event" of the holiday season, the Celebration of Lights Parade & Fireworks takes place in Poughkeepsie on November 30 at 6:30pm.
The Wilderstein Historic Site, former home of FDR's cousin, Daisy Suckley, will be hosting this festive holiday event featuring a variety of teas paired with finger sandwiches, homemade cakes, and cookies on December 8 at 1pm. Tickets are $30 for adults and $20 per child. Admission includes a tour of the decorated Queen Anne mansion.
A Frosty Fest
The creative minds behind Headless Horseman Hayrides and Haunted Houses focus their festive faculties on the holiday season for a sensational seasonal light show in Ulster Park. Snuggle up on a hayride through Frosty's Enchanted Forest, visit the Glistening Gardens, or pop into the Magical Mansion. Weekends November 23-December 23.