With the holidays upon us, many are wondering how COVID-19 will impact the festive season. Luckily, many traditional events are still scheduled near our area. At time of publication, Naval Submarine Base New London was under “HPCON Charlie” restrictions. Keeping this in mind, we wanted to share local events that embrace social distancing and outdoor gathering. And in some cases, are completely virtual.
Here’s a list of what we’ve found:
Sparkling Lights at The Breakers Nov. 21-Jan. 10
Venture up to Newport for “Holidays at the Newport Mansions” like never before. In addition to their traditional (and lavish) indoor decorations, the mansions will host a new, outdoor experience. For the first time, the exterior of The Breakers and its landscape will be awash in thousands of festive colored lights, including 28 spruce trees glittering and glowing; The Breakers façade bathed in color; and illumination of the historic paths, shrubbery and trees in various colors. The Children’s Cottage will be outlined in lights and visitors will be able to peek through the windows at Santa’s Workshop. Holiday music will fill the area. Admission by the regular Breakers House and Garden Ticket, no special ticket is required ($8-$32). The Breakers is open Nov. 21-January 10 daily from 12 noon to 8 pm. The Sparkling Lights start at 4pm. For more information, click here.
Cinema Under The Stars Nov. 14-22
Enjoy a fun outdoor cinema experience at Weekapaug Inn in Westerly! Settle into your lounge chair under the stars, get cozy with a fur heated blanket, and get ready for a classic holiday film. Ticket prices ($75/person) includes a three-course “TV Dinner” bento box meal, candy and popcorn. Warming Thermos cocktails, beer, and wine will also be available for purchase. Movies range from “The Holiday” to “How The Grinch Stole Christmas.” For more information, click here.
Holiday Lighted Boat Parade on Nov. 28
Mystic’s beloved Holiday Lighted Boat Parade returns on Saturday, Nov. 28! Spectators flood both sides of the Mystic River to see the decorated ships pass by. Entrance to participate in the Holiday Lighted Boat Parade only requires a toy or coat donation to the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center and it is open to the public. Decorated vessels parade down the Mystic River at 6:20pm and return to the Mystic River Park, where spectators and judges gather. Boats are judged on creativity and team spirit, and prizes are offered for Most Charismatic Crew, Innovative Vessel, Best Dressed Vessel, Most Holiday Spirit and Miss Mystic Vessel of Grandeur.
Shop Small in The Village on Nov. 28
As Neighborhood Champions, Olde Mistick Village is a proud participant in Small Business Saturday.
Small Business Saturday continues to be an annual holiday shopping tradition — just one part of the larger Shop Small Movement to support small businesses every day and everywhere. Because a visit to the family-owned Village, shoppes, and restaurants not only supports our local economy but also promotes a thriving community. Santa and Mrs. Claus in will also be in the meeting house from 12 to 3pm! For more information, click here.
Virtual Holiday Pallet Workshop on Dec. 2
Painted By The Shore is hosting some fun, festive craft workshops this holiday season! Gather with your loved ones together at home or meet up online to create a beautiful pallet sign. Participants will receive a kit including all supplies and interactive instructions. The workshop costs $49.95 per person, and while their November event sold out, there’s still tickets available for December 2. For more information, click here.
Festival of Lights on Dec. 11
On December 11, experience the magic of the holiday season at the Olde Mistick Village. Come stroll through walkways brilliantly lit by thousands of luminaries. With live entertainment and complimentary treats in the Meeting House, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy. All shops will be open! For more information, click here.
Holiday Vendor Expo on Dec. 12
Sweet Hill Farm in Gales Ferry will host a special holiday-themed vendor event on Saturday, December 12! Shop from over 20 local small businesses, artists, and crafters for a one-stop holiday shopping extravaganza! For more information, click here.
Are we missing any? Comment below!