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Dutchess Tourism Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremonies in Dutchess County 2018

Seeing the smiles on children and adults’ faces plainly illustrates the value of these events to the surrounding communities. Everyone’s encouraged to spend time with family and friends. All events are free.  It's not too early to mark your calendars for the annual Tree Lighting Ceremonies and visit with 

that jolly old elf himself, Santa! Wishing a safe and happy holiday season to all! 

Friday, November 23rd

  • Millerton – Festival of Lights Parade. Millerton Fire Company’s Annual Parade of Lights!
    Lineup begins at 5:00pm.  Starting at 5:30, our parade will feature fire trucks and community floats from all around lighting up our streets to celebrate the start to the holiday season!
    The parade route is the same as last year, starting on route 22 at Arnoff Storage, it will proceed up Main Street, turning onto North Maple Avenue and then ending on Century Boulevard at the Fire House. We welcome you at the conclusion of the parade to the fire house for light refreshments and a chance to meet Santa, Mrs. Claus, and their elves!

Saturday, November 24th

  • Pine Plains – 33rd Annual Town Decorating Day and Parade of Lights. Leave your wallet in the car! Come enjoy family and friends as we kick off the holiday season as a community. Decorate a tree and visit with Santa & Mrs. Claus. Free.
  • Village of Wappingers Falls - 9th Annual Holiday Light Parade. Parade line up is 6pm at Elm St. Santa arrives in Mesier Park by 7pm in time for the tree lighting. Be a part of this spectacular parade! Trophies awarded for the best floats. 6:30pm. Mesier Park
  • Town of LaGrange -Festival of Lights Parade & Toy Drive Join us on Saturday, November 24th at 6:30pm for the very FIRST Town of LaGrange, Holiday Parade of Lights.
    Parade will begin at Arlington High School and move west along Route 55 to Freedom Road.
    Please bring a new unwrapped toy for Toys For Tots. Drop boxes will be located on either end of the route. Arrive early to get the perfect spot for the best view!  (845) 452-1972.
  • Ulster: Kingston Sinterklaas Send-off Celebration departs from the historic Kingston Waterfront (aka “Spain”) after a day of open houses, musical performances, workshops creating beautiful crowns and branches, and a Children’s Maritime Parade down Broadway, with stars and puppets galore. Sinterklaas and his white horse depart on a tugboat across the river to his destination, Rhinecliff. After his send off, enjoy a Sinterklaas Soiree, Tree Lighting Ceremony, and specials at restaurants.

Sunday, November 25th

  • Rhinebeck - Parade of Lights & Village Tree Lighting. E. Market St., Rhinebeck Bank parking Lot. It’s a holiday tradition! Ornament workshop, music, Joe Daily & Michelle Taylor from Q92, and horse drawn carriage rides provided by the Gentle Giants 4H. Also civic groups and vendors, culminating with the parade at 5pm and visit from Santa, who lights the tree. 3:00 pm - 6pm. Children’s Parade, 5pm. Tree Lighting 5:30 pm. Free. 845-876-5904.

Friday, November 30th

  • The City of Poughkeepsie - Celebration of Lights Parade and Fireworks with the Bardavon6:30pm. Each year thousands attend, voted by Dutchess Tourism as the "Best Event" of the holiday season. Following the parade at 8PM the Bardavon will screen: Home Alone.

The parade commences at 6:30pm on Main and Garden Streets and proceeds to the evening’s first Christmas tree lighting on Main Street, near Market Street. The Parade is led by the Mayor; they’re joined by the Amerscott Highland Pipers. Past parades have included Arm of the Sea Theatre puppets, Hudson Valley Philharmonic brass ensemble and IABAS Traditional Brazilian Band with 200 children from Warring, Morse, Clinton and Kreiger Elementary Schools. Finally, Santa Claus arrives on a City of Poughkeepsie Fire Engine.

The parade proceeds down Main to Clover Street where everyone convenes at Dongan Square Park for the second tree lighting, with remarks from the Mayor and music. Then at 7:15, Poughkeepsie River District Business Association and Legion Fireworks present the area's only winter fireworks display along the waterfront. At this time the third tree is lit up on the Walkway Over the Hudson, which opens its eastern gate for viewing the fireworks from high above the Hudson River. See the Celebration of Lights fireworks at Upper Landing Park and take the glass elevator up to the Walkway; members can watch the fireworks display for free; nonmembers are asked to pay a donation of $5. 5-8pm.

Following the parade at 8PM the Bardavon screens the classic film “Home Alone”. Pre-show Wurlitzer Organ music provided by New York Theatre Organ Society (NYTOS) beginning one-half hour prior to the film.

  • Millbrook - Parade of Lights. Lineup starts on the bottom of Franklin Street, 5 pm; parade, 6 pm. Followed by a tree lighting ceremony, and Santa and Mrs. Claus visit the Firehouse, 20 Front St. 845-677-5837.

Saturday, December 1st

Holiday Shopping Village 11am-4pm: Stop by the Vassar Alumnae lawn and shop the Holiday Village filled with local vendors selling holiday wares.  We will also have great family friendly activities!  From a petting zoo to face painting, arts and crafts and marshmallow roasting there indeed is something for kids of all ages!

Egg Nog Crawl 12-4PM: Take a walking tour of the Arlington Business District for our 4th Annual Egg Nog Crawl with participating local restaurants and businesses.  Tickets are $5 which can be pre-purchased by emailing or can be purchased that day from 11:30-3 at the Holiday Village


Holiday Parade with Santa Claus 4:45pm. Tree Lighting 5:30 pm. Line up begins at 3:45 at Davies Hardware Parking Lot with kick-off at 4:45. The parade begins on Main Street at Davies Hardware, travels down Main Street to Raymond Avenue and ends at the intersection of Raymond and College Avenue.3 bands will join us. Pet walking is allowed but we ask that you please leash your pet and have them dressed in the holiday spirit!

Santa Claus will arrive by sled to end the parade and after will meet the young at heart. The tree will officially be lit at 5:30pm with caroling. 

  • Rhinebeck –Sinterklaas Festival DayA day-long, colorful celebration featuring children’s workshops, dance, theatre and music all over the village of Rhinebeck. Don’t miss the Dancing Bear, the Pocket Lady, and Mother Holly. The spectacular Children’s Starlight Parade at 6 pm, featuring two-story tall, animated puppets carried by hundreds of volunteers, closes the day at twilight. A non-denominational event, Sinterklaas joins people of all ages and backgrounds, in a memorable celebration of children, art, and the light of the winter season. Be sure to grab a program booklet when you arrive or pop over to this page so you know the whole story of Sinterklaas in the Mid-Hudson Valley. It will make for an even richer experience!
  • Beekman - “Snowflake Spectacular!” Beekman Rec Community Center., Recreation Rd. Join friends for an afternoon of holiday cheer! Visit with Santa, enjoy crafts, face painting, and play outdoor games. Caroling & Tumblebus. Refreshments. Santa’s Mailbox: bring a letter for Santa with a STAMPED addressed envelope and you’ll get a reply from the North Pole! Tree Lighting 4:30pm. Wristbands required for admission; order online in advance; non-residents: $10 if ordered by Nov. 29, $15 CASH ONLY after that. 2:30-4:30pm.
  • Stanfordville –Holiday of Lights Parade. Town Hall, 26 Town Hall Rd./Rte. 82, Stanfordville.  Parade of lighted floats and vehicles; prizes for best entries. Lighting of the town’s holiday tree. Visits with Santa and gifts for kids.  Community party with food and music at firehouse after parade. Sponsored by Lions Club & Ladies Auxiliary. Parade 6pm. Free. 845-868-1366
  • Pleasant Valley “Festival of Lights” Parade. Main Street, Pleasant Valley. 6:30pm Featuring local businesses, community groups, floats - all lit up to celebrate the festive season - strolling down Main Street. Fun for the whole family! The parade ends at Pleasant Valley Fire House with cookies and hot cocoa. Don't miss this favorite, annual town event.
  • Union Vale Festival of Lights”. Tymor Park, 249 Duncan Road. Town of Union Vale.  Grand lighting of more than 150,000 lights. Fife and drums and carols accompany ceremony. 4:30pm.
  • Town of Wappingers – Christmas Tree Lighting.  Join a fun, old-fashioned, family event with refreshments, Christmas carols, and gifts for the kids. Kick off the holiday season and say hello to the Jolly Old Elf himself, Santa Claus. Sponsored by the Town of Wappinger Recreation Department & Committee. 5 – 7:30pm. Schlathaus Park, corner of Meyers Corners and All Angels Hill Rd.  845-297-0720.

Sunday, December 2nd

  • Hyde Park – Tree Lighting. 4383 Albany Post Rd./Rt. 9, Hyde Park. Join us as we light the Christmas Tree at Town Hall, singing carols and refreshments indoors at Town Hall. Santa arrives by police car for an early visit with the kids. Co-sponsored by the Hyde Park Lions Club and the Hyde Park PBA. Free. 845-229-8086. 4:45 – 6pm.
  • East Fishkill – Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. East Fishkill Community Center, 890 Route 82, Hopewell Junction. The evening includes holiday music by the East Fishkill Community Chorus, hot chocolate, snacks, and a visit from Santa Claus. Sponsored by East Fishkill Recreation and East Fishkill Rotary Club. 5-7pm.
  • Village of Red Hook - Winterfest-Santa's arrival. Red Hook. Tree lighting and activities. 1 – 4 pm. Parade, 4 pm. Tree Lighting, 5:15 pm. Free. 845-758-0824.

Friday, December 7th:

  • Pawling Decemberfest/Tree Lighting. Village of Pawling at the Chamber of Commerce Building. . Santa & Mrs. Claus arrive with their reindeer to light the tree. Enjoy choral music, hot chocolate and cookies and the festive charm of an old-fashioned village Christmas. Horse drawn wagon rides for the children. Holiday sales and specials continue throughout the evening. 6pm. 845-855-0500.

Saturday, December 8

  • Second Saturday Beacon. BeaconArts once again lights up its recycled Bicycle Christmas Tree sculpture at Polhill Park/Beacon Visitors Center, Main Street & Route 9D. Park in the City Hall parking lot directly across the street. Bring your own mug for hot cider or hot chocolate.
    • 4:30pm: the 7th night of Hannukah is celebrated by lighting the Bicycle Menorah. This is followed at 4:45pm by community caroling with Gina Samardge and Compass Arts.  Santa arrives at 5pm and the count down to the Bicycle Christmas Tree lighting begins!  Santa stays to greet families until 6 pm.
    • Sculptor Ed Benavente is the artist behind what is becoming a beloved and unique tradition for the City of Beacon. “Bicycles, like communities, are powered by people,” states Benavente. The bicycle tree, which has doubled in size since its inaugural appearance in 2011, is fabricated entirely of recycled bicycle parts. Galleries and shops are open late until at least 9pm. Enjoy artist receptions, concerts, and more! 5pm. 845-831-0025
  • Village of Fishkill - Holiday Party & Village Tree Lighting. Van Wyck Hall, 1095 Main St., Fishkill. Kids enjoy a petting zoo, plus making crafts and storytelling before the Christmas tree is lit. 2:30 -4:30pm. Free. 845-897-4430.   
  • Village of Tivoli Winterfest - Merry Minstrels, crafts, games and a visit from Santa Claus, plus wagon rides through town. Tree lighting ceremony, and food and drink. Bonfire follows. 2:30pm-4:30pm. Free. 1 Tivoli Commons, Tivoli. 845-757-2021.




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