Christmas & Holiday Events

Xmas evening at Webb Deane New England’s lively cities, snug towns, and snow-swept mountains are a perfect backdrop for Christmas and holiday celebrations and traditions. Come and enjoy classic favorites, like performances of “The Messiah” or “The Nutcracker, and local traditions, like the festive lighting of the Nubble Lighthouse in York, Maine. Lodgings offer plenty of ways to combine a holiday getaway with pastimes like skiing, shopping, or theater-hopping.

Find the dates you plan to travel or simply search the full events list below.

Choose by dates...

We welcome the events that are open to the public. Please click here to Submit your Event.

All Ages

Blink! Sound & Light Show - Boston, MA

Nov 22, 2014 - Jan 4, 2015 Faneuil Hall Marketplace, 1 Faneuil Hall Square Boston, MA
Blink! is a light & sound show that fills every corner of Faneuil Hall Marketplace with the blaze of 350,000 LED lights accompanied by music of the Holiday Pops. The seven-minute spectacle runs continuously each evening.BLINK! ooens with a tree lighting ceremony Saturday, November 22, 8-9 p.m., with local celebrities. Aeries of outdoor performances will take place throughout the season featuring touring companies of Broadway shows, pop bands, holiday carolers, dance troupes, bell ringers and local musicians. The season culminates December 30 - January 1 with "THE ICE," a collection of interactive ice sculptures complemented by live street theater performances. See BLINK! Website for schedule of entertainment
Time: Continuous performances nightly

Nantucket Noel & Christmas Stroll - Nantucket, MA

Nov 28, 2014 - Jan 3, 2015 Nantucket, MA
nantucket noel Nantucket celebrates Christmas with a nostalgic flair during Nantucket Noel, which begins the day after Thanksgiving with a a tree lighting and carol singing at dusk. Carols are led by the \local high school a cappella group, the Accidentals & Naturals.

Christmas Stroll weekend, December 5-7, begins at noon on Saturday, when Santa Claus arrives by Coast Guard vessel at Straight Wharf. At the top of Main Street, the Magical Talking Tree delights children and a variety of entertainment will appear on the Main Street Stage. A European-style Christmas Marketplace takes place at the corner of Easy and Main streets from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

The whole month’s calendar includes craft shows, theater, exhibitions, an antiques auction, a display of over 100 creches at the Methodist Church, a Ghost Walk, a Festival of Wreaths (November 26-30) and Festival of Trees (December 5-31). Home for the Holidays event happens December 13. Sales and fairs abound and our Whaling Museum features A Night of Holiday Magic.
Nantucket New Year (December 27- January 4, 2015) is a flurry of gala events. On New Year's Eve, the Nantucket Hotel hosts a lavish Moulin Rouge Bal" from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. featuring music by the Perri Rossi Orchestra.
Time: Consult event website

Salem Holiday Happenings - Salem, MA

Dec 1, 2014 - Dec 31, 2014 Downtown Salem and 2 New Liberty Street Salem, MA
Celebrate, shop, and dine in Salem during the holiday season. Festival highlights include Christmas in Salem Historic House Tour and Santa's arrival atop the Hawthorne Hotel. New for 2014, join theHoliday Stroll on December 13-14, and don't miss the second annual Launch! celebration on New Year's Eve.
Time: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

First Night Northampton - Northampton, MA

Dec 31, 2014 - Dec 31, 2014 Northampton, MA
Twelve-hour family-friendly New Year's Eve festival of the arts, culminating in a traditional ball-raising from the roof of the Hotel Northampton. Celebrate at 20 downtown venues, featuring an astounding array of entertainment with hundreds of talented performers.
Time: Noon to midnight; fireworks are at 6:15 p.m.
Telephone: 413-584-7327

First Night Boston 2015 - Boston, MA

Dec 31, 2014 - Dec 31, 2014 Copley Square in Back Bay, Downtown, and other Boston neighborhoods Boston, MA
first night boston Boston’s First Night is a leader in the nation for the extent and grandeur of the activities. MBTA provides an extended subway and commuter rail schedule for First Night until 2 a.m. The T will be free from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. See the First Night Boston website for a detailed schedule. Highlights of the 12-hour day include:
A Grand Procession Parade begins at 5:30p.m. at the Hynes Convention Center and moves down Boylston Street. The parade includes marching bands, moving sculptures, and elaborate floats.
Fireworks shows at 7 p.m. on the Boston Common and at midnight at the Boston Harbor
Puppet Festival and family events all afternoon and evening at the Hynes Convention Center
Ice sculptures on Boylston Stree and around Copley Square. People may watch the sculptors at work on these marvelous creations
Live music by headliners Yo La Tengo (Hynes Convention Center, 9:30 p.m.) and Patty Larkin & Dom Flemons (Berklee Performance Center, 8 p.m.), and many others.
Time: 1 p.m. to midnight
Admission: Adults, $10; children under 4 admitted free. Buy buttons at Boston CVS stores and Bank of America branches.

Children & Families

ZooLights at Stone Zoo - Stoneham, MA

Nov 27, 2014 - Jan 4, 2015 Stone Zoo, 149 Pond Street Stoneham, MA
ZooLights is a winter landscape of tree-lined paths lit by thousands of twinkling lights. Stroll through festively decorated Yukon Creek, home to bald eagles, North American porcupines, Canada lynx, reindeer and arctic foxes. You can meet the reindeer up close and visit Santa, who will be available for photos through December 23. Zoo Lights is open daily except on Christmas.
Time: 5-9 p.m.


New Year's Eve Lunch Cruise - Boston, Ma

Dec 31, 2014 - Dec 31, 2014 Odyssey Boston, 60 Rowes Wharf Boston, Ma
Celebrate New Year's Eve aboard the Odyssey. Great lunch, Champagne toast, and fabulous views of Boston and its inimitable skyline.
Time: 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $57.90 and over; children at 3 to 12, $34.95
Telephone: 617-603-0843


Gardens Aglow Celebration of Lights - Sandwich, MA

Nov 28, 2014 - Dec 28, 2014 Heritage Museums & Gardens, 67 Grove Street Sandwich, MA
Gardens Aglow Join Heritage Museums & Gardens for its holiday celebration for lights and decorations than ever! New this year is a Holiday Train, a festive model railway display that will travel through the Special Exhibitions Gallery along elevated tracks and over a spectacular bridge. Enjoy music and dance performances at 6:30 in the Automobile Gallery. St. Nick will hold court in the Model T. Gingerbread houses will be on display. Also: holiday crafts, carousel rides, Hidden Hollow by moonlight, and marshmallow roasting over a fire pit.
Time: Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, 4:30-8:30 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $18; children, $7. Tickets are available for purchase at the gate until 7:30 p.m.
Telephone: 508-888-3300

“Winter Reimagined” at Tower Hill Botanic Gardens - Boylston, MA

Nov 28, 2014 - Jan 4, 2015 Tower Hill Botanic Gardens, 11 French Drive Boylston, MA
Wander through glittering indoor displays and illuminated trees and shrubs in the Orchard, Entry, Lawn and Winter Gardens of Tower Hill Botanic Gardens. A giant Bromeliad tree, hundreds of poinsettias, more than 1,500 hand-crafted ornaments and six miles of lights make this a unique holiday display.
Time: Open daily, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Wednesdays & Thursdays, open ‘til 9 p.m. starting December 4.

Holly Days 2014 -- Winter Re-imagined - Boylston, MA

Nov 28, 2014 - Jan 4, 2015 Tower Hill Botanic Gardens, 11 French Drive Boylston, MA
Wander through glittering indoor displays and illuminated trees and shrubs in the Orchard, Entry, Lawn and Winter Gardens. A giant Bromeliad tree, hundreds of poinsettias, more than 1,500 hand-crafted ornaments and over six miles of lights make this a unique holiday experience for all ages. Tower Hill will be closed December 24, 25, 31, and January 1.
Time: Open daily during Holly Days 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Adults $12; seniors $9; youth age 6-18, $7
Telephone: 508-869-6111


Norman Rockwell: Home for the Holidays - Stockbridge, MA

Nov 22, 2014 - Feb 8, 2015 Norman Rockwell Museum, 9 Glendale Road Stockbridge, MA
Norman Rockwell Museum Norman Rockwell: Home for the Holidays features a selection of the artist’s enduring holiday images and the painting Stockbridge Main Street at Christmas, Rockwell’s tribute to the town where he lived and worked for 25 years. On December 7, the town will re-create Rockwell’s Main Street painting from noon to 2 p.m. At 2 p.m., the Rockwell museum staff welcomes people to St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Stockbridge for the chance to decorate a holiday stocking, with all supplies provided. Free
A cookie decorating workshop will be held the Museum on December 6 from 3 to 5 p.m. Visitors will have the opportunity to meet Santa and enjoy holiday music and special gallery talks about Rockwell’s holiday art. Museum admission.
Time: See description above
Admission: Adults, $17.50; seniors, $16; college students, $10; children age 6-18, $5.
Telephone: 413-298-4100

Victorian Holiday Programs at the Normal Rockwell Museum - Stockbridge, MA

Dec 27, 2014 - Feb 8, 2015 Norman Rockwell Museum Stockbridge, MA MA
Norman Rockwell Museum will present a series of programs inspired by the Victorian era and Rockwell’s love for the writings of Charles Dickens.
Fashions from the Dickensian era. Explore Norman Rockwell’s holiday paintings which feature Victorian dress, and learn more about the fashions of the time from historian Linda Meyer. December 27 at 5:30 p.m. Free with Museum admission; $10 for program only.
Drop-in vacation-week programs inspired by the Dickensian influence in Rockwell’s art. Visitors can celebrate the season with art making, tours, readings, and live music in the galleries. December 27 through January 2 (closed January 1), 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Norman Rockwell: Home for the Holidays. Rockwell’s memorable, enduring images, which reflected the best in us, are on view in this special holiday installation of original artworks and objects. On view through February 8, 2015.
Time: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $17.50; seniors, $16; students, $19; kids and teens age 6 to 18, $5.


Noel Concert with the Boston Gay Men's Chorus - Boston, MA

Dec 19, 2014 - Dec 21, 2014 Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsoborugh Street Boston, MA
Traditional favorites like “Deck the Halls” and “The First Noel” will be combined with fun new classics like “Sparklejollytwinklejingley.” A selection of five classic Christmas carols and holiday tunes will be re-imagined in the styles of unlikely composers, such as “What if Steven Sondheim had written ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’?” or “What if Jerry Herman had written ‘We Three Kings’?” 
Time: Curtain times vary by day; see event website
Admission: Tickets start at $20 (before fees)
Telephone: 617-542-7464

Holiday Concert with John Pizzarelli and Jane Monheit - Great Barrington, MA

Dec 27, 2014 - Dec 27, 2014 Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, 14 Castle Street Great Barrington, MA
Elegance, virtuosity, and the will to swing it will be on display in full force when these two artists take the stage to celebrate American popular song styles.
Time: 8 p.m.
Admission: $25-$100
Telephone: 413-528-0100

Outdoor Activities

Bright Nights at Forest Park - Springfield, MA

Nov 26, 2014 - Jan 4, 2015 Forest Park, off Sumner Avenue Springfield, MA
Travel by cars or bus and enjoy a scenic, nearly three-mile route through Forest Park that's decorated in a series of festive light exhibits that celebrate the season. Supper with Santa, Dinner with Dickens and more extras enhance the experience. Musical simulcast on 98.5FM. Closed December 1 and 2. Admission price is per vehicle.
Time: Sunday to Thursday, 5-9 p.m.; Fridays, Saturdays and holidays, 5-11 p.m.
Admission: November 26, $6; thereafter: Monday to Thursday, $18; Friday to Sunday and holidays, $21.

Performing Arts, Theater, Dance

Salem Trolley & The Griffen Theatre present “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens - Salem, MA

Nov 29, 2014 - Dec 23, 2014 Tour departs from Salemdipity, 86 Wharf Street (Pickering Wharf) Salem, MA
This humorous performance reanimates Dickens’s holiday classic. Ride along with Scrooge on the Salem Trolley as the classic tale is brought to life in a completely unexpected way. Please arrive 15 minutes before show time. Show starts inside Salemdipity.
Time: Departure times vary; consult event website
Admission: $25

"A Christmas Carol" presented by North Shore Music Theatre - Beverly, MA

Dec 5, 2014 - Dec 21, 2014 North Shore Music Theatre, 62 Dunham Road Beverly, MA
December 5 - 21 With dazzling special effects that have grown even more exciting over time, traditional and original songs, and colorful costumes, this presentation of "A Christmas Carol" has become a holiday favorite throughout New England. Songs include: Patapan, The Apple Tree Wassail, Ding, Dong, Merrily On High, Here We Come A-Wassailing, The Boar's Head Carol, We Saw Three Ship. Running time with intermission is 2 hours and 10 minutes. Contains pyrotechnics, sudden loud noises and dark images. No children under age 4 allowed.
Time: Curtain times vary; see event website

“A Christmas Carol” - Beverly, MA

Dec 5, 2014 - Dec 21, 2014 North Shore Music Theatre, 62 Dunham Road Beverly, MA
“A Christmas Carol” tells the tale of curmudgeonly miser Ebenezer Scrooge, who is visited by the ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Future hoping to change his destiny and save his soul. This brilliant musical follows Scrooge through a series of strange and magical journeys, where he ultimately discovers the true spirit of the holiday season.
Time: Consult event website
Admission: $55-$70
Telephone: 978-697-3866

Christmas Revels 2014 - Cambridge, MA

Dec 12, 2014 - Dec 28, 2014 Sanders Theatre, 45 Quincy Street Cambridge, MA
This year, the Christmas Revels travels -- through your imagination -- to London’s Crystal Palace, built for the Great Exhibition of 1851. A colorful cast of characters, including a harried producer, street performers, and composer Arthur Sullivan, are caught up in a scheme to produce a record-breaking Christmas show with grand choral works, traditional carols, Victorian dances, music hall-style entertainments, and a sprinkling of buffoonery.
Time: Consult event website
Admission: Adults, $25-$60; children, $13 to $42
Telephone: 617-496-2222

“A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens - Pittsfield, MA

Dec 14, 2014 - Dec 22, 2014 Pittsfield, MA
The classic tale of a cold and fateful Christmas Eve features Ebenezer Scrooge, a cheapskate who has some lessons about life and friendship to learn. Watch this magical spectacle unfold onstage as the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future pay a visit to Mr. Scrooge, forcing him to confront his greedy life and make a change of heart for the better! This musical performance features song and dance.
Time: December 14 at 2 p.m.; December 18-19 and 22 at 7 p.m.; December 20-21 at 2 & 7 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $37; kids ages 16 and younger, $27

A Christmas Celtic Sojourn in Boston - Boston, MA

Dec 16, 2014 - Dec 22, 2014 Cutler Majestic Theatre at Emerson College, 219 Tremont Street Boston, MA
Music director Seamus Egan returns with his group, Solas. Other virtuosos in the show will be harpist Catriona McKay, fiddler Chris Stout, Winifred Horan on fiddle, and Natalie Haas on cello. Singer Alyth McCormack of the Chieftains will perform, as will Navan, with its unique four-part harmonies. The Chieftains’s Jon and Nathan Pilatzke, and Cara Butler will bring their unique approach to Irish dance, as will the young dancers from the Harney Academy of Irish Dance in Walpole. Dates: December 16, 1 and 6 p.m.; December 20 and 21, 8 p.m.; December 22, 3 and 8 p.m.
Time: Curtain times vary; see event website

Irving Berlin’s "White Christmas" - Boston, MA

Dec 16, 2014 - Dec 28, 2014 Citi Performing Arts Center/Wang Theatre, 270 Tremont Street Boston, MA
Irving Berlin’s classic holiday movie comes to life on the Wang Theatre stage. This show is sure to delight audiences of all ages with its jazzy melodies and exciting dancing. Featured songs include “Happy Holidays” and “Sisters”. You’ll be laughing, humming, and tapping along with the lively and talented cast.
Time: Curtain times vary; see event website
Admission: $35-$125
Telephone: 617-482-9393

"A Christmas Carol" - Worcester, MA

Dec 19, 2014 - Dec 28, 2014 The Hanover Theatre, 2 Southbridge Street, Worcester, MA
Troy Seibels's adaptation of "A Christmas Carol," replete with splendid costumes, scenery, special effects and singing is sure to get even the grumpiest Scrooge into the holiday spirit! Children and students tickets half-off.
Time: Curtain times vary; see event website
Telephone: 877-571-7469