Fan and follow us!
In This Issue
Sign up today to receive the monthly 
Arts & Culture Bulletin!
Header Photos
December 2015
Massachusetts is rich in arts & culture, so it's no surprise that exciting events, exhibits and festivals are held in the state's 16 regions all year long. Find out more!
Most Wonderful Time of the Year
Massachusetts is magical in December. Families reunite over the holidays and children dream of gifts and school vacation, while visitors revel in our cultural riches and outdoor beauty. Hotels are decked out with twinkling lights and restaurants put out their finest settings. All across the Commonwealth, communities come together in good cheer, reflective of the spiritual season and joyous for what we hold dear.  And for optimists everywhere, Winter Solstice on December 21 only means one thing: the days are getting longer as we move into the New Year! For more details on the holidays, visit  

Plan your next getaway to Massachusetts! 
Featured Region: The Berkshires

Kick off the festivities in the Berkshires with three great holiday events. In Williamstown, you can enjoy a Holiday Concert at the Clark and then continue the fun at Williamstown's Holiday Walk Weekend. Then head on over to Stockbridge for their Main Street at Christmas, an experience that captures small-town Christmas spirit. Holiday wreaths, twinkle lights, and Christmas trees decorate the little village of Stockbridge, which Norman Rockwell once called the best of America, the best of New England. On the first weekend of December each year the town celebrates Rockwell's Christmas painting in motion, with activities that bring locals and visitors alike home for the holidays.  Be sure not to miss Making Spirits Bright, an inaugural holiday event in Lenox. This weekend of fun begins with the tree lighting and holiday shopping but also includes caroling and even a bar crawl with Santa. The Berkshires is truly a holiday destination! Find more information on The Berkshires
Greater Merrimack Valley

Join the Concord Museum to celebrate the 20th Annual Family Trees: A Celebration of Children's Literature, open to the public through January 3, 2016. Admire up to 40 fancifully decorated Holiday Trees throughout the Concord Museum, inspired by favorites from children's literature, contemporary and classic! Enjoy a literary inspired family program such as an Afternoon with Authors & Illustrators (Sunday, December 6) or A Morning with Santa and much more.  Call 978-369-9763 or visit for more! Find more information on Greater Merrimack Valley.
Central Massachusetts

Photo credit: Scott Erb
Embrace the holiday spirit in Central Massachusetts! Experience an extraordinary light display at Tower Hill Botanic Garden's Winter Reimagined. Sutton's Chain of Lights provides family fun, shopping and many "old fashioned" New England experiences. Enjoy a festive atmosphere during Holidays at WAM with champagne, shopping, and special events, or catch one of the many holiday-themed shows at The Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts. And don't miss the spectacular stART at Station annual gifting-themed arts and crafts festival! Find more information on Central Massachusetts.
Franklin County
Welcome Yule will be held the evenings of December 11-13 at Shea Theater in Turners Falls! Enjoy music, dance, songs and stories to drive the dark away. Welcome Yule's signature wassailing songs, carols, puppets, stick dancing and mummers play will be included, along with the passing of the Yule log, the Abbots Bromley Horn Dance and a retelling of the myth of Halcyon. Tickets at Also, It's a Wonderful Night will be held in downtown Turners Falls Friday, December 11th. Holiday activities, art exhibitions, live music, restaurant specials, and shopping! Find more information on Franklin County
Greater Boston
New for this season is the Mayor's Celebration of Lights, where the façade of the Boston Public Library will be illuminated with festive imagery produced by brilliant 3-D high lumen digital light projectors. BLINK! Faneuil Hall Marketplace's light & sound show contributes to the festive atmosphere.  Traditional favorites include Boston Ballet's The Nutcracker and Holiday Pops. Handel's Messiah resonates throughout Symphony Hall and Black Nativity captivates audiences of all races. Tree and Menorah lightings, Holiday Strolls, Open Houses and Markets all add to holiday cheer.  Take advantage of the Mayor's Holiday Special, half-price tickets & dining deals - all season long. And check out the buttonless new First Night/Fist Day! Find more information on Greater Boston
Cape Cod
Join us for Christmas on Cape Cod this December and create memories that will be cherished for generations! Every town and village puts their special stamp on holiday-inspired events throughout the month, including festive strolls, theater performances, parades, harbor lightings and Santa's arrival by boat. Kids will love the Train to Christmas Town aboard Cape Cod Central Railroad and Gardens Aglow at Heritage Museums & Gardens. Visit for holiday events, packages, "shop-portunities" and to find out how you could win hundreds of dollars in gift cards through our "Santa's Helper" social media promotion! Find more information on Cape Cod.
Greater Springfield
On December 5-6, see "Yuletide at Storrowton, where visitors can enjoy traditional Yuletide activities and celebrations for the entire family, all in the decorated 18th and 19th century buildings of the Storrowton Village Museum in West Springfield. And don't forget! Bright Nights at Forest Park is on display all month long. Drive through the holiday lighting display and enjoy this Western MA tradition! For more info on these events and more visit  Find more information on Greater Springfield.
Hampshire County
If you're looking to visit the closest thing to Santa's workshop, look no further than Santa's Trains at Look Park in Northampton! On display December 11-24, the Garden House transforms into a Victorian-style train station featuring a selection of running model trains whirling by a whimsical wonderland of Christmas favorites and village landscapes. Admission is free! Also enjoy the park's holiday light display by car or hop on the Look Park Holiday Express train for $5. Find more information on Hampshire County.
Johnny Appleseed Country
Johnny Appleseed Country is wrapped in holiday spirit this month, from the Jack Frost Festival in Templeton to a Living Gift Market at Heifer Farm and the festivals of trees in Leominster and Gardner. Christmas takes center stage, too, with Barre Players' "The Spirit of Christmas" and Theater at the Mount's "This Wonderful Life."  Looking for holiday inspiration? Stop by the Fitchburg Historical Society's House Tour, or follow the Country Roads Christmas route during this "most wonderful time of the year!" Find more information on Johnny Appleseed Country.
Martha's Vineyard 
A favorite Island tradition for 34 years, Christmas in Edgartown - happening December 10-13 - celebrates the holidays and provides visitors the chance to experience the charm of Edgartown in the winter! Weekend highlights include the Christmas parade, an arts & craft fair, holiday concerts, photos with Santa, the annual lighting of the lighthouse at the Harbor View Hotel, retail promotions, and holiday-themed events benefiting Island Charities. For more information visit the calendar at Find more information on Martha's Vineyard.
Mohawk Trail Region
Holiday sounds and spirit will fill Spring Street in Williamstown on Saturday, December 5th for the 32nd Annual Williamstown Holiday Walk! Holiday festivities with traditional New England flair: old-fashioned caroling, horse-drawn carriage rides, a Reindog Parade, a Penny Social & Santa Claus. Kick-off with the ever popular Reindog Parade will begin at 3 p.m. For a schedule of holiday fun, visit or call 413-458-9077. Find more information on The Mohawk Trail Region

It's no wonder that green is a favorite holiday color, given the festive trees this time of year! Through December 13, the Festival of Trees and Snow Village at Mass Horticulture Society's Elm Bank Reservation in Wellesley features trains winding through holiday villages, Santa visits, and horse-drawn wagon rides, and music weekends. In Marlborough, the  three-day MetroWest Festival of Trees December 11-13 features 125 trees, as well as Candyland, Santa's Workshop, Dickens Village, and more. Find more information on MetroWest
Nantucket Island

Join us for the 42nd Nantucket Christmas Stroll to celebrate "The Heart of the Season" December 4-6. Magically, Santa arrives via Coast Guard Cutter and leads a jolly parade up cobblestone
Main street - then the reindeer games begin! Victorian carolers, the Magical Talking Tree, boutique shopping and so much more. Ring in the New Year island style December 30-January 2. Restaurant events, comedy shows, children's activities and a "Night To Remember" ball are sure to please all!  Find more information on Nantucket Island.
North of Boston
Get into the holiday spirit in the North of Boston region this season! Bring the family to see Santa arrive on a lobster boat during the Marblehead Christmas Walk and also in Rockport.  Explore the homes of Salem dressed-up for the holidays during the 36th Annual Christmas in Salem House Tour. Don't miss Newburyport's Santa Parade & Tree Lighting, and be sure to get your tickets for North Shore Music Theatre's annual musical spectacular, "A Christmas Carol!" Find more information on North of Boston.
Plymouth County

Enjoy a Victorian Christmas at the Daniel Webster Estate in Marshfield from December 5th through the 13th! The annual Christmas Designer Show House features holiday-inspired décor in the Victorian Estate, built on the grounds of the ancestral home of one of America's greatest Statesmen, Daniel Webster. Designers are given few limitations and allowed to create what inspires them and what will WOW you. Find more information on Plymouth County.  
Southeastern Mass

Starting November 26th, the Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette in Attleborough will transform into a holiday showplace with as many as 300,000 lights on the trees, hedges and religious symbols throughout 10 beautiful acres. The Lighting of the Taunton Green takes place on December 5th and the Downtown Holiday Stroll takes place on December 5-6. The 24th Annual Holiday House Tour on December 12-13 showcases the beautifully restored homes in the historic neighborhoods of New Bedford! Find more information on Southeastern Massachusetts
Regional Tourism Councils  
Funded by the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism