This weekend: Christmas season in the Catskills

Above: Photo by Nannette Turner, via Flickr

Ring those bells and light those lights: It’s Christmastime in the Catskills. Public festivities abound. Come out and revel with your neighbors this weekend. Here’s our five-county guide to what’s doing.


On Friday, Dec. 11, there is a free holiday wine tasting at Roxbury Wine & Spirits—try four different holiday wines. 

Santa will be reading Christmas stories and posing for photos at the Deposit Free Library on Friday, Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. 

On Saturday Dec. 12 from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m., they’ll be celebrating Christmas Victorian-style in Delhi at the Old Fashion Christmas Celebration at the Cannon House. Hear music played on an old-style cylinder player, see what kind of gifts were hot in the 19th century and partake of refreshments and charming company.

The square in Delhi will be a-sparkle on Saturday evening (Dec. 12) from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. for the Holiday Jubilee in the Courthouse Square. Santa will be back, they’ve got a new tree lighting ceremony to debut and there will be hot cocoa, horse and carriage rides and the announcement of the winners of the Holiday Lights Contest.

From 9 p.m. until 12 a.m. that night, O’Neill’s Shire Pub in Delhi will be rockin’ with a combination Toy Drive and Ugly Sweater Party with the CLASI Ladies and DJ Tito. Don your finery, the more dismaying the better, and bring a new, unwrapped toy.

On Thursday, Dec. 17, the Walton Theatre in Walton presents the classic Miracle on 34th Street starring Maureen O’Hara, Edward Gwenn and Natalie Wood. Show starts at 7 p.m.


On Saturday, Dec. 12, from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m., they’ll be hitting the bricks in Athens for the Annual Victorian Stroll. Visit the Members Small Works Holiday Show at the Athens Cultural Center for some shopping; enjoy Victorian Santa, a horse-drawn trolley ride or take in a contemporary art or dance performance. 

No need to go to the ballet in Manhattan; it’s coming to you. The Catskill Mountain Foundation and Valentina Kozlova Dance Conservatory New York are teaming up to present a special production of The Nutcracker, fresh from Symphony Space in New York City, on Saturday, Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 13 at 2 p.m. at the Orpheum Film and Performing Arts Center in Tannersville.

A concert of sacred and seasonal songs (and sing-alongs) will delight the audience at the New Baltimore Reformed Church as a new 35-voice choir who’ve been honing their chops in Belgium and the Netherlands brings it all back home. Wrapped in Song: Concert by Hudson-Mohawk Chorale will take place on Sunday, Dec. 13 at 3 p.m. and Monday, Dec. 14 at 5 p.m.


On Friday, Dec. 11 from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m., come to Sharon Springs for the 2015 Parade of Lights. You’re invited to light up your tractors, horse-drawn wagons or buggies, horseback riders, antique cars, motorized riding groups, business floats or “musical entries” – or even just your winter coat and hat—and join the march. The parade will be followed by a tree lighting and caroling session, and by refreshments at the Sharon Springs Central School.

Come rediscover the true meaning of Christmas with the good folk of the Valley Bible Baptist Church in Cobleskill when they bring their annual rendition of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol to the stage for a three-day run, from Friday Dec. 11 and Saturday Dec. 12 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 13 at 3 p.m. Admission is free.

The Studio for Art and Craft in Cobleskill has quite a bit planned. On Sunday, Dec. 13, there’s a kids-only (parents can wait up front) Holiday gift-making class from 4 p.m. until 5 p.m. On Wednesday, Dec. 16 and Thursday, Dec. 17 from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. and on Saturday Dec. 19 at 3 p.m., all ages get to have some fun at the Holiday Paint’n’Parties, complete with refreshments and a raffle.


Visit Callicoon on Saturday Dec. 12 from 12 p.m. until 7 p.m. to immerse yourself in the Victorian charms of Dickens on the Delaware. Strolling carolers, costumed shopkeepers, hot chocolate and performing arts are all part of the plan.

Above: Dickens on the Delaware. Photo via the Dickens on the Delaware Facebook page. 

The Santa Express will be making several Sullivan County stops to delight local youngsters this weekend with a 50-foot-long burst of holiday lights, music and cheer. Look for the jolly old elf on Saturday Dec. 12 in Bethel at 5:30 p.m. and Liberty at 7 p.m.; on Sunday, Dec. 13, the Express rolls (reindeers?) into Monticello at 5 p.m. and Fallsburg at 6:30.

Feast at a luxury hotel, anyone? The Sullivan in Rock Hill is hosting a catered community Christmas party on Saturday, Dec. 12 from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m. They’ll have cocktails, a dinner buffet, a dessert table, and a DJ ready for your celebratory delight.


Come enjoy the 33rd annual retelling of The Nutcracker at UPAC in Kingston with the Catskill Ballet Theatre. Performances will be taking place on Friday, Dec. 11 and Saturday Dec. 12 at 8 pm; there’s a Sunday (Dec. 13) matinee at 3 p.m.

At the Old Dutch Church in Kingston, you can revel as the Mendelssohn Club makes the rafters ring with their annual Christmas Concert. Performances are scheduled for 8 p.m. on both Friday, Dec. 11 and Saturday, Dec. 12.

Above: The Well-Strung quartet comes to Woodstock. 

Join the all-male string quartet Well-Strung for A Well-Strung Christmas at the Woodstock Playhouse on Saturday, Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m. They’ll offer a blend of reverent classics, irreverent updates, and audience participation moments; top-tier tickets will get you a meet-and-greet session at an afterparty with the foursome.

At the Shadowland Theatre in Ellenville, director Brendan Burke has a lesser-known holiday play on offer: Greetings!, a tale of Christmas dinner with the family getting awkward—and then getting interrupted by an Entity. Performances are ongoing until Dec. 20, Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Savor Spa in Woodstock will donate 10 percent of the price of any of their services to Woodstock Farm Sanctuary, Family of Woodstock or Scenic Hudson between now and Jan. 31, 2016. Best excuse for a massage ever.