5 Fabulous Holiday Happenings in Connecticut

The holidays are rapidly approaching-soon the hustle and bustle of shopping and dinners and visits from loved ones will begin. During all this commotion, it’s nice to slow down and take the time to enjoy the holiday season. Start new traditions and make some priceless memories with your family this holiday season-check out the following Connecticut town info to find the best events:

1. Holiday Light Fantasia

 Goodwin Park, Hartford

November 26-January 1

This Greater Hartford tradition is a breathtaking trip for the entire family. Drive through over 1 million lights in this 2-mile show-more than 200 individual scenes depict memorable holiday moments and characters. The fascinating displays represent not only the Christmas holiday, but also Hanukkah, New Years, and Three Kings Day. All proceeds from this fabulous holiday excursion benefit year-round programs at the Channel 3 Kids Camp. Admission is $15 per car, with a special Military Appreciation Night on December 29, when all veterans and active military personnel enjoy free admission. Special rates apply to limousines, mini-buses, and full-size buses.

Hours: 

Sunday-Thursday: 5pm – 9pm

Friday & Saturday: 5pm – 10pm

2. Holiday Lights

Lake Compounce

Weekends only from November 27-December 20

Enjoy thousands of lights at this spectacular holiday outing. Walk around the park and take in the lighted scenes, holiday music, and an awesome light show every half hour. Additional festivities include visits with Santa, lighting of the tallest tree in CT, stories with Mrs. Claus, children and family rides, and holiday treats! Admission is free for 2015 & 2016 platinum season pass holders.

Hours: 

Saturdays & Sundays: 4pm-9pm

Fridays: 5pm-9pm

3. Winterfest & “The Tunnel of Lights”

Connecticut Trolley Museum, East Windsor

Weekends from November 27-December 20 & December 26-29

Bundle up and get ready to feel the wind nipping at your nose on an open-air ride on the electric “sleigh” car. For those not fond of the cold, an enclosed trolley offers a warmer dash through the snow. Enjoy an old-fashioned carol sing as you journey down the tracks. Once your ride is over, take a stroll through the Visitors Center which is brimming with holiday decorations and model trains. Finish off your trip with a visit to Santa and a cup of steaming hot cocoa. Admission is $12 for an adult, $10 for seniors (over 62), $8 for kids (ages 2-12), and $3 for those under 2.

Hours: November and December (dates before Christmas) 5pm-9pm

December (dates after Christmas) 6pm-9pm

4. Lantern Light Tours

Mystic Seaport

November 27-December 20

This historical play takes visitors back in time to Christmas Eve 1876. The delightful show consists of five scenes scattered throughout the 19th-century village, and guests will be enchanted by horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday dances, and the charming glow of old-fashioned lantern lit streets. The show is 70-minutes and requires walking over various terrain (cobblestone, grass, gravel, stairs), so comfortable shoes are recommended. Admission is $32 for adults ($26 for members), $25 for kids ages 5-17 ($19 for members), and free for those under 4.

Hours: Tours begin at 5pm, leaving every 15 minutes

5. North Pole Express

Essex Steam Train

November & December (please check website for available dates & departure times)

This 90-minute locomotive-powered sleigh ride guarantees a magical night for visitors of all ages. A live, musical performance of The Night Before Christmas takes place in each coach, along with visits from Santa and Mrs. Claus, sing-a-longs, and hot cocoa and sugar cookies. Kids are encouraged to wear snuggly pajamas, and every child receives a small gift from Santa! Tickets are $65 for first-class passengers, and $32 for coach class passengers.

Please feel free to contact us to learn about more magical events taking place in Connecticut this holiday season.

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Michelle Manter Giglietti

Owner~Realtor at Manter Realty Group of Keller Williams
Top Producing Realtor and recognized blogger. In her free time you can hear her screaming fore at the local golf course,or catch her at home enjoying fresh cooking and a glass of wine with her husband and favorite 6 pound Morkie named Pedro.
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