Connecticut November 28, 2017
9 Winter Festivals In Connecticut That Are Simply Unforgettable
There are so many ways to celebrate the crispness of the air and the impending arrival of snow in Connecticut, but there is something truly amazing about attending a festival. Face painting, carriage rides, ice sculptures, pictures with Santa, fabulous street eats and tractor parades – yes, tractor parades, are some of the magnificent things that happen at winter festivals. Not all of these celebrations take place in December either, so browse through this list of 9 festivals in Connecticut that you just won’t want to miss this year.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
1. Greenwich Holiday Stroll Weekend
The Greenwich Holiday Stroll Weekend is one winter festival that you will not want to miss. Complimentary carriage rides, a live nativity scene featuring nine animals - like nothing you will find at other winter festivals and holiday musical performances at two different tents are just the beginnings of this magical celebration. There will be demonstrations of ice sculpting and many local food trucks with some fantastic cuisine. Local businesses will be offering discounts for holiday shoppers as well. The Greenwich Holiday Stroll Weekend is Saturday, Dec. 2nd from 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 3rd from noon - 5:00 p.m. in downtown Greenwich.
2. Fairfield Christmas Tree Festival
Every year historic Burr Homestead in Fairfield is transformed into an extraordinary Christmas display with each room being decorated and full of festivity. The holiday boutique will be open for those who want to do a little shopping and Santa is available for photos with the kids. There are also a few special events planned like Holiday Hip Hop Night and a Nutcracker Sweet Tea. The Fairfield Christmas Tree Festival runs Friday December 1st from 10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m., Saturday December 2nd from 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. and Sunday December 3rd from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
739 Old Post Rd., Fairfield, CT.
3. Newtown Holiday Festival
A holiday trolley ride, gingerbread house contest and festival of trees make this holiday festival in Newtown an enchanting place to visit. There is also a polar express for the kids, historic house tours and the Nutcracker Suite Ballet. Newtown knows how to pack a whirlwind of activity into one day. The Newtown Holiday festival will take place on Saturday December 3rd from 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
25 Main St., Newtown, CT.
4. Festival of Trees and Traditions at Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art
The Festival of Trees and Traditions was started in 1973 as a fundraising event. Local artists, community members and businesses donate decorated holiday trees and wreaths to be put on display in the galleries. It is quite an extensive collection of holiday cheer shining all in the same space. The festival will take place from December 1st - 3rd and December 6th - 10th.
600 Main St., Hartford, CT.
5. Bethlehem Christmas Town Festival
The Christmas Town Festival in Bethlehem is quite a celebration. On Friday night, you can ride the Christmas Town Train. Other events include face painting, hay rides, a cookie sale, live music and craft and food vendors. There is a whole lot to do and see at this exciting winter festival which runs Friday December 1st from 5:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. and Saturday December 2nd from 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Town Green, Junction of Rte. 61 and Rte. 132, Bethelehem, CT.
6. Winterfest and the Tunnel of Lights
Start a new holiday tradition aboard a historic trolley car at the Winterfest and the Tunnel of Lights in East Windsor. The trolley will pass through a tunnel of sparkling lights as your ride along singing Christmas carols. Afterwards you can head into the visitors center which has beautiful holiday decorations and model trains to view. Meet up with Santa and he will have a small gift for each child. The festival is at the Connecticut Trolley Museum from 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. on most Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights in December.
58 North Road, East Windsor, CT.
7. Winterfest at Mystic Aquarium
From December 26th through January 1st, Mystic Aquarium comes alive with holiday cheer. There are different events scheduled every day to celebrate the season. Watch as artists create amazing sculptures out of ice, elves frolic in the water with the animals and enjoy local entertainment. You can take a piece of Winterfest home with you by crafting a snowflake masterpiece of your very own.
55 Coogan Blvd,.,
8. Fire and Ice Festival
The Fire and Ice Festival is a unique way to warm up on a chilly day. The only one of the Connecticut winter festivals to offer both a fire bar and a sculpted ice bar, this is one unique way to celebrate the cold weather. There will be plenty of local food, beer and wine offered along with demonstrations of ice sculpting and woodworking. There will also be opportunities to take that classical winter carriage ride. Fire and Ice Festival will be held at Saybrook Point Inn on January 20th from noon - 5:00 p.m.
2 Bridge St., Old Saybrook, CT.
9. Chester Winter Carnivale
The streets of Chester fill up completely with the arrival of the Winter Carnivale - this just might be the most highly attended of the winter festivals. This event is packed with fun activities for the whole family. Watch a tractor parade or shop the local gallery and shop specials. You definitely won't want to miss the Chilly Chili Cook-off and there are plenty of other street eats and treats available. There will also be ice carving, face painting and other entertainment. The Chester Winter Carnivale takes place on Sunday February 18th from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. in the Chester, CT center.
Do you know of more winter festivals that should be added to this list? Let us know in the comments section below.
Still looking for more things to get you in the mood for this season? Take a look at these
enchanting things that will get you into the spirit.