November is the perfect time to create your holiday bucket list. There is magic in the air and so many reasons to celebrate. Here in Connecticut, there are plenty of enchanting things to do that will get you in the mood for the holiday season. From light displays to skating to gingerbread houses, we have you covered with this list of 11 things to do that will help you feel peace and joy this Christmas.
1. Take A Walk Down Gingerbread Lane
Chef and designer, Jon Lovitch creates gingerbread houses all year long to build stunning villages on display in four cities. We are lucky enough in Connecticut that he installs Gingerbread Lane at the Children's Museum in West Hartford. It is made of over 300 houses, more than 30 storefronts and is made of only edible ingredients. The village will cover over 295 square feet and is quite a sight to behold. Gingerbread Lane will be on display from November 18th - January 14th, you will want to add this incredible treat to your holiday bucket list.
2. Listen To A Christmas Ghost Story
Lantern Lights Tours presents "The Spirit of the Holiday: A Christmas Ghost Story" at the Mystic Seaport this year. The tour covers approximately 1/2 mile and lasts for 70 minutes. The play is set on Christmas Eve in 1876 and you will view 5 scenes of hilarious history with an unexpected turn or two. Tours are scheduled for December 1, 8, and 17: 5:00 - 8:45 p.m., tours begin every 15 minutes and November 24-25 and December 2, 9, 15-16, and 22-23: 5:00 - 10:00 p.m., tours begin every 15 minutes.
3. Follow The Star To Bethlehem
This town in Connecticut knows how to celebrate the holidays. The Bethlehem Christmas Festival will be on Friday, December 1, 2017 from 5:00 - 10:00 pm and Saturday, December 2 from 9:30 am - 4:00 pm. Face painting, train rides, crafts and music are just some of the things going on at this festival. And of course, good old St. Nick will make an appearance too!
4. Feed The Reindeer
That's right, Santa and his live reindeer are coming to Sam Bridge Nursery and Greenhouses in Greenwich. Reindeer are feeding times are 9:00 am and 3:30 pm and you can help out! Have your picture taken with Santa and visit the reindeer from November 24th - December 23rd. This is truly a magical moment that you need to put on your holiday bucket list.
5. Visit Connecticut's Tallest Christmas Tree
Standing at 100 feet tall, the Nutmeg State's tallest Christmas tree can be found lighting up the amusement park at Lake Compounce. Holiday of Lights will begin November 24th and run through December 30th. It is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm.
6. Glide Across The Ice
Skating outdoors is a favorite winter tradition and at Bushnell Park in Hartford - the skating is free. Don't have a pair of skates - no worries, skate rental is free too!
7. Jump In The Car And Enjoy The Displays
There are a couple of houses that are just over the top in Connecticut with holiday lights. Wonderland at Roseville can be found in Fairfield, Tony's House of Lights in Stamford and That House in Milford are all decorated to the max and lit up the Saturday after Thanksgiving. You might not have a house that uses 60,000 lights on it in your neighborhood, but with just a local drive, you can probably still find some pretty great displays.
8. Enjoy A Horse Drawn Sleigh Ride
The classic New England experience of a horse drawn sleigh ride is accessible to all at Allegra Farm in East Haddam. This ride will transport you back in time as you view the fresh snow and scenic landscape. Make sure you bundle up and get ready to enjoy the ride.
9. Hop On The Polar Express
Take a holiday themed train ride at the Railroad Museum of New England in Thomaston. This is a whimsical way to spend an evening - you will be accompanied on your trip by singing elves. These tickets sell out quickly so you will want to jump online and book now. The train runs from November 24th - December 24th.
10. Slide Down A Snowy Hill
There are two super ski resorts that have multiple tubing runs that are perfect for that long slide down a hill. Woodbury Ski Area and Powder Ridge Mountain Park and Resort offer tubing in hourly sessions or day long passes. Both locations also offer other winter activities like skiing and snowboarding.
11. Do Something Charitable
There are plenty of organizations out there that are helping to make Christmas a reality for needy families. In the spirit of giving, you can donate a toy to Toys For Tots or a canned good to your local food bank. It feels just as good to give as it does to receive during the holiday season.
What else do you have on your Christmas bucket list for 2017? We would love to hear about it in the comments section. If you are looking for more ways to get outside this season, check out these
winter hiking trails.