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21 Albany Holiday Traditions to Try This Year

Start a new tradition this year! Holiday traditions with the family give everyone something constant to look forward to and memories to look back on fondly for years to come. Whether your family is just starting out or you're trying to reconnect with loved ones, beginning a new holiday tradition is a great way to bring the family together. Check out these 21 holiday traditions below, and choose one your family will enjoy.

cookie making


  1. Watch a holiday movie together as a family. A few ideas: A Christmas Story, Mixed Nuts, Home Alone, or Elf.

  2. Read the kids The Night Before Christmas the night before Christmas - or, start a tradition with a different holiday story, like The Polar Express.

  3. Make and decorate gingerbread houses together.

  4. Bake and/or decorate cookies together.

  5. Light the menorah together every night of Hanukkah. Even if you don't typically celebrate this holiday it could be a great chance to teach your children about other cultures.

  6. Spin the dreidel. Again, even if you don't celebrate Hanukkah, who cares? It can still be a fun game and tradition!

  7. Enjoy a hot cocoa night. Play games or just talk while partaking in one of the most beloved Christmas beverages.

  8. Go to your place of worship as a family.

  9. Volunteer at a local soup kitchen or with a food drive.

  10. Make a charitable donation in lieu of / in addition to gifts.

  11. Sing carols at home or go out caroling.

  12. Visit a senior home or hospital and cheer up those who need it this season.

  13. Have a family member dress as Santa for the kids.

  14. Mysteriously have a bag of joke gifts appear each year. Gag gifts are fun!

  15. Play a slideshow of pictures from previous holiday celebrations. If you have a Chromecast you can show pictures from your phone or computer right on the television.

  16. Put on a festive puppet show.

  17. Decorate the home together with lights. Or, take a drive together to see where the best lights are in nearby neighborhoods.

  18. Pick out and/or cut your own tree and decorate as a family.

  19. Do a holiday craft together. Find crafts for tree ornaments and more at a local craft store.

  20. Plan a day / evening of local holiday shopping as a family.

  21. Attend a local parade or annual holiday event together each year.

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