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Festivities in New England

Festivities in New England
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Mystic Stroll. More than 50 Main Street stores serve up free food, while Santa hands out candy canes and carolers invite strollers to sing along. December 7, 6-9 p.m. 866-572-9578, 860-572-9578;

Christmas in Newport. Now in its 40th year of turning the dark days of December into the brightest of the year. More than 1,500 volunteers make sure that every day of the month features something special. December 1-31. 401-849-6454;
Downtown Holiday Festival, Providence. Peek inside a selection of venerable residences that open to the public on this special day. Tours, carolers, bell ringers, and a tree lighting ceremony at City Hall. December 4. 401-831-7440;

Marblehead Christmas Walk. For the 40th annual celebration, a tree-lighting ceremony and holiday parade, plus Santa arrives by lobster boat. Additional family events throughout the weekend. December 2-5; extended activities December 11 and 18. 781-631-2868;
Stockbridge Main Street at Christmas. Named for the iconic Norman Rockwell painting, this 21st annual weekend features house tours, caroling, and a holiday concert. On Sunday, Main Street closes down, antique cars find their parking spaces, and a live re-creation of the painter’s work takes shape. December 4-5. 413-298-5200;
Beacon Hill Holiday Stroll, Boston. Charles Street welcomes shoppers with free hors d’oeuvres, restaurants offer special menus, and carolers in Victorian garb give the night its soundtrack. Horse-and-buggy rides, too. December 9, 6-9 p.m. 617-720-7888;

Winter Holiday Stroll, Nashua. After the tree lighting in Railroad Square, Santa greets kids, adults greet the outdoor beer garden, and everybody gets a chance to take in the local cuisine and a variety of musical and dance performances. November 27, 5-10 p.m. 603-883-5700;
Candlelight Stroll, Portsmouth. Strawbery Banke’s historic homes are decorated, while hundreds of candles light up streets and properties. December 4-5, 11-12, 18-19; Saturdays 5-9 p.m., Sundays 4-8 p.m. (call or visit the Web site for pricing). Part of Vintage Christmas in Portsmouth, including live entertainment, opera broadcasts, films, and more at The Music Hall. 603-433-1100,; 603-436-2400,,

Winter Wassail Weekend, Woodstock. Regarded as one of the state’s don’t-miss weekends, highlights include a holiday horse parade, a tour of historic homes, streets filled with singers, and Billings Farm & Museum dressed in 19th-century Christmas finery. December 10-12. 888-496-6378, 802-457-3555;

Christmas Prelude, Kennebunkport. Since 1982, this seacoast town becomes a winter wonderland each December. Santa arrives via lobster boat; summer shops re-open and glisten. December 2-12. 207-967-0857;

Please Note: This information was accurate at the time of publication. When planning a trip, please confirm details by directly contacting any company or establishment you intend to visit.

Updated Thursday, October 7th, 2010

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