Monday, December 15, 2014

The Hudson Valley’s Vintage Holidays

Posted By on Mon, Dec 15, 2014 at 9:00 AM

click to enlarge Sparkle! at Boscobel House & Gardens - LAURIE SPENS PHOTOGRAPHY
  • Laurie Spens Photography
  • Sparkle! at Boscobel House & Gardens


Some of the Hudson Valley’s most prominent families arrived by train, steamboat, or horse, and built grand houses along the Hudson Riverfront. Visiting them is like time traveling, and there’s no better time to visit than during the holidays when their grandness includes candles, holly and bonfires. The weekend of December 19-21st is the last weekend for many history-steeped holiday events where your family can celebrate like an old timey Livingston or Moran.

It’s the last chance to catch Sparkle 2014, Boscobel’s luminous annual event, on Friday and Saturday, December 19th & 20th. From 5-9p, the house and grounds will be lit with thousands of lights and candlelit pathways. Catch dazzling attractions like a Sparkle Queen stilt walker, illuminated hoop dancers, period music and an a cappella group. There’s also free photos with Santa! Family 4-Pack (2 Adults, 2 Children): $45; children under 3 are free.

Locust Grove will host its final treasure hunts of the season on Sunday, December 21st, from 12p-4p. Explore the mansion, all decked out for the holidays, while spying animals in Samuel Morse’s art collection. Catch the carolers at 1p, 2p and 3p, while enjoying cookies, cider, and the romance of a vintage Christmas. Adults $10; children $8; children under 4 are free.

You won’t regret the travel to Westchester when you take advantage of this two-for-one holiday deal. There are still tickets available for the final performances of the storytelling spectacular, Dickens’s Christmas Carol at the Old Dutch Church. In the ever-haunting Sleepy Hollow, let master storyteller, Jonathan Kruk, bring the tale to life in the perfect setting. Tickets include entry to the final Holiday Open House at Philipsburg Manor, just across the street. With winter-themed crafts, live fiddle music, free sweets and warm drinks around the bonfire, the kids will love it! Saturday and Sunday, December 20th & 21st. Performances at 3:30p, 4:45p and 6p; open house from 4-8p. Adults $24; children under 18 are $20.

On Saturday, December 20th, from 11a-4p, the Clermont will be open for history buffs to step into the Revolutionary War story of a British attack and American success. “There are tickets for guided tours in season (ends Dec 28th until spring), but this is special because it’s self-guided, so you feel like you’re getting away with something and sneaking behind the scenes!” says Anne McGrath, Director of Programs & Community Relations for the Friends of Clermont. Outside, there are ample grounds to romp and explore with the beautiful Hudson River always in view. It’s free, and cider and cookies will be served in the Visitor’s Center.

Happy holidays!
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