If you are like me and LOVE Christmas you'll want to experience as many of the holiday events as possible on the list below. Be sure to read through to the bottom for more local homes with holiday displays.
The Boston Common Frog Pond sits at the heart of Boston Common, the oldest and most treasured public park in the U.S. With a winter ice rink and skating school, a reflecting pool in the spring and fall, and a summer spray pool and children's carousel, there are always fun and exciting activities for residents and tourists alike. Skating from 10AM to 9PM T,W,T,F,S&S, M 10 -3. Tickets are $6.00 per person over 58 inches, under 58 inches skate free, there are rental options on site for $12.00 per adult and $6.00 per child from.
A series of lighting displays intended to bring warmth and cheer to the Greenway during the darkest part of the year. Trees are lit from the North End to Chinatown parks, including the Light Blades in the Wharf District parks. Along the way, children can stop for a ride on the carousel for $3, which operates Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 11am to 6pm, as well as from Dec. 20-31 from 11am to 6pm (except Dec. 25).
What is more fun than going to see one of Boston's largest Christmas trees just outside Quincy Market? Over the past few years, Faneuil Hall has seriously upped the holiday light game with Blink!. Blink! is the synchronization of thousands of lights to classic holiday carols. Each hour after sunset, visitors are treated to the show, which has become such a large-scale production that the entire shopping center feels magical.
The Stone Zoo's wooded paths are lit up for its annual "ZooLights"through Jan. 5. Photos with live reindeer, visit Santa plus an elf and see the winter animal displays beautifully lit for the season.
Head to the zoo for Breakfast with Santa at Giddy-Up Grill and stay for the lemurs. Santa is ditching the cookies for scrambled eggs with cheese, Prancer's pancakes, Ho Ho Hot Chocolate, and more. It's also a chance for the youngsters to make ornaments and get a snapshot with Santa—personal cameras are encouraged. Then at 11 a.m., catch ring-tailed lemurs noshing on their favorite foods in a festive exhibit inside the Tropical Forest. Pre-registration for the breakfast is required, and ends on Friday, December 11 at 12 p.m. (Saturday, December 19 from 8:30-10 a.m.; Franklin Park Zoo, One Franklin Park Rd., $29.99 per person for non-members and $22.99 per person for Zoo New England members; Children under age 2 are free)
Come celebrate the folk artistry of residents who transform their houses and yards with lights, illuminated ornaments, and shrines of devotion and fantasy. 45 minute Trolley Tours leave from (and return to) Somerville City Hall where coffee, hot chocolate, and cookies are served. In addition, craft activities for children and changing annual events.
For 2015, the Somerville Bicycle Commision will host their popular Illuminations Bike Tour. Bicyclists are encouaged to outfit their bikes. Meet at Somerville High School at 5:50 for a 6 p.m. tour. (If there is heavy snow, wind, or rain this bike tour is cancelled.) For more information check out: www.somervillebikes.org
Each year this small park on the waterfront in Boston's North End is beautifully lit during theholiday season. The park features a terrace that spans the length of the green and is illuminated with thousands of tiny blue bulbs in the winter. The simple beauty of the park, echoed by these lights, makes Christopher Columbus Park one of the most romantic outdoor locations in Boston – especially in the snow. It is no wonder that this setting is a favorite for marriage proposals. Info from boston.com
Information from Boston.com - Caroling will take place from 6 to 6:30 p.m. on December 4, December 11, and December 18. The carousel, which features a cast of 14 creatures of the land, air, and sea, compiled with help from elementary school kids around Boston, will stay open until 7 p.m. on all three evenings. Following each performance, vendors from the Greenway and the neighboring Boston Public Market, including Third Cliff Bakery, Taza Chocolate, Red Apple Farm, and Daniele, Inc., will give out free hot chocolate and other treats.Local choirs tapped by the Greenway for "Caroling on the Carousel" include the Revels of Cambridge, Chorus Pro Musica, and the Boston Children's Chorus, who will perform on the 4th, 11th, and 18th, respectively.
On Thursday December 10th, starting at 6PM organizers will close off Charles St to traffic, allowing for holiday shoppers to stroll through all of it's shops and offices enjoying refreshments, live music and horse drawn buggy rides. For children, the festivities will begin during the earlier portion of the evening at the Hill House fire house with free photos with Santa followed by a Christmas Tree lighting. It's the most wonderful time of the year in our neighborhood and we welcome you to ring in the holidays with our festive, fun and diverse group of Beacon Hill businesses. Information courtesy of historicbeaconhill.com
The Avery Bar at the Ritz Carlton Hotel hosts a Hot Cocoa Bar on December 12, 19, and 26, allowing you to drink your cocoa like a king. The event invites you to sit beside the fireplace and "choose your chocolate cocoa type, then top with a selection of candies, cookies and creams, served with scrumptious holiday sweets and pastries." Double the cozy. (December 12, 19, and 26; The Ritz Carlton, 10 Avery St.; Tickets are $36 per adult and $28 per child) Info from Boston.com
Christmas in Artisan Bistro
Celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in the award-winning Artisan Bistro. Savor fresh local and seasonal dishes with subtle bistro touches and traditional holiday menu specials.
Thursday, December 24 and Friday, December 25
Nutcracker Breakfast with Mrs. Claus
Join us for an elegant breakfast buffet with Mrs. Claus and her friends from Boston Ballet's The Nutcracker for live musical entertainment, storytelling, and interactive holiday activities. A local charitable organization, Catching Joy, offers craft projects for the entire family.
Sunday, December 20
10:30 a.m. in The Ritz-Carlton Ballroom
$72 per adult, $44 per child
Sugar Plum Fairy Tea
Enter a magical Nutcracker dreamland where guests mingle with costumed characters from Boston Ballet's production of The Nutcracker. Join us for delicious desserts, sing-alongs and interactive holiday crafts courtesy of Catching Joy.
Saturday, December 5 and Sunday, December 6 and 13
11 a.m. in the Washington Junior Ballroom
$60 per adult, $42 per child
Hot Cocoa Bar
Escape the winter chill at Avery Bar, sit by the fireplace and warm up with a cup of hot cocoa. Choose your chocolate cocoa type, then top with a selection of candies, cookies and creams, served with scrumptious holiday sweets and pastries.
Saturdays, December 12, 19, 26
3 to 5 p.m. in Avery Bar
$36 per adult, $28 per child
Now entering into it's 29th Season, this humorous & whimsical interactive performance reanimates Dickens' timeless seasonal holiday classic. Experience Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol with a twist. Ride along with Scrooge on the Salem Trolley as the classic tale is brought to life in a completely unexpected way. Shows sell out quickly and seats are limited.
This tour takes you around to the best cocoa spots in town. You'll go through the South End, Back Bay, the Common, and the Garden on a two-and-a-half-hour stroll that stops to sample five different hot chocolates. You'll also learn the history of hot chocolate, which exists, and boozy varieties will be included for the grown-ups. Tours start at the South End Buttery and will be held every Saturday morning through the season. (December 5 and 19; Tickets are $27.50 for one and $52 for two)
Get with the holiday spirit and skate for free all day at the Community Ice Skating rink at Kendall Square. If you're more of a skater-watcher, stick around for the free skating show at 2 p.m. where former Olympians and prize winning skaters will carve up some ice in graceful, synchronized fashion.
Free, Saturday, December 12, 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Community Ice Skating at Kendall Square, 300 Athenaeum St., Cambridge, info from Boston.com
Drop by Smolak Farms's barn for quality time with Santa and his helpers. The kids will be able to make holiday crafts, make food for the reindeer, and hand a wish list to the red-suited man himself. Parents are welcome to get a photo of the kiddos with Santa. The best part? No lines. (Every Sunday in December; 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; Smolak Farms, 315 South Bradford St., North Andover; $5 per child, adults are free)
The historical and posh Gore Place museum in Waltham is hosting weekend teas throughout December with none other than Saint Nicholas himself. Classic-style three-tiered teas will include stories told by Gore Place's very own Santa Claus, which makes this an ideal event for children and families. (December 13, 19, and 20; 52 Gore St., Waltham; $30-35)
Showcasing 350 years of winter pastimes and holiday traditions against the backdrop of the Museum's furnished historic houses, Candlelight Stroll anchors the Vintage Christmas in Portsmouth experience, described as the "Christmas capital of North America." On these weekend evenings, the Museum grounds glow with hundreds of lighted candle lanterns, the houses are adorned with thousands of hand-made decorations crafted from live greens, dried flowers and herbs collected from the Museum gardens, and the air is filled with the sound of holiday music and scent of woodsmoke. The Labrie Family Skate outdoor ice skating rink adds to the festive atmosphere, allowing Strollers to take a turn on the ice (skate rentals available) and hosting skaters in vintage costumes. Info from their website.
The 25th annual production of A CHRISTMAS CAROL brings holiday joy to the stage at Bill Hanney's award-winning North Shore Music Theatre for 14 performances only from December 4 - December 23.
Homes with Christmas Lights north shore 2015
North Andover One of my favorite home town neighborhoods FoxHill Rd
Danvers : Arthur Street multiple houses
Saugus 16 & 22 Lynn Fells Parkway, east of Rivers Lane
Melrose Washington Street just south of Gould Street, Melrose
Malden Bainbridge Street, just west of Rockwell Street, Malden
Tewksbury Rockvale Road off Shawsheen Street multiple
Billerica Pratt Street shown below
Salisbury - Stover Court
Wilmington Freeport Drive
Below is an overhead shot of the Rockvale road homes courtesy of Tewksbury Patch
Extensive information added from boston.com, the boston globe, boston magazine, north shore moms and mommy poppins.
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