December is underway, and there are a lot of holiday happenings to be aware of in the Albany area. You can bring the family to the new Wintertime Wonderland attraction, meet Santa at Crossgates Mall, attend a Festival of Trees, and more!
Experience the Capital Region’s Largest Indoor Christmas Event
A new holiday-themed attraction called Wintertime Wonderland has recently opened in Latham, and it’s recognized as the largest indoor Christmas event in the Capital Region. During your visit to Wintertime Wonderland, you’ll glide through a frosty maze and meet an ice princess, parade past Santa’s village and meet the elves, take a peek into Santa’s workshop, and more. Start a family tradition and reserve your tickets today.
Ho Ho Ho! Santa Claus Is Back at Crossgates Mall
Santa’s Workshop has returned to Crossgates Mall, and Santa Claus himself is ready to welcome families in a safe and healthy environment. This year, all appointments must be made in advance on the “crossgatessantaland.com” website, and visitors ages 2 and older are required to wear a face covering and complete a wellness screening before meeting with Santa at his socially distanced workshop. Each visit includes a complimentary video, and photos are available for an additional fee.
Another option this year is a live virtual visit with Santa Claus via Zoom, allowing you to meet with Santa while he’s in his workshop and you’re at home.
Two Holiday Season Races Have Gone Virtual
Don’t put away those running sneakers yet! Both the Albany Last Run 5K and the Santa Speedo Sprint have gone virtual this year due to COVID-19 regulations, and these local fundraisers can use your support. The Virtual Albany Last Run 5K is presented by the St. Peter’s Cardiac & Vascular Center, and the race can be completed any time during the month of December. The Virtual Santa Speedo Sprint, which raises funds for the Albany Damien Center and the HIV/AIDS program at Albany Medical Center, will take place on Saturday, December 5.
See Colorful Holiday Lights & Decorations at the Festival of Trees
Hosted by the Schenectady County Historical Society and YWCA NorthEastern NY, the annual Festival of Trees is a wonderful fundraiser that features beautifully decorated Christmas trees. The month-long event kicks off at the Historical Society on Saturday, December 5, and general admission is just $6 for adults 12+ and free for kids 11 and under.
Celebrate the Holiday Season at the Reimagined Troy Victorian Stroll
Due to restrictions on mass gatherings, the Rensselaer County Regional Chamber of Commerce has reimagined the 2020 Troy Victorian Stroll as a “Stroll Season” that will be held from December 6-20. During the “Stroll Season,” head to downtown Troy to see decorated storefronts, shop at local businesses, and support the local community.
518 Rainbow Hunt Becomes a Snowflake Hunt
Winter is coming, so it’s only appropriate that the #518rainbowhunt that kicked off earlier this year turns into a #518snowflakehunt. Scotia resident Kristyn Dayter created the 518 Rainbow Hunt Facebook page back in March to encourage people to get outside and look for rainbow pictures on storefronts and windows (while remaining socially distant).
If you’d like to participate in the new #518snowflakehunt, then visit the 518 Rainbow Hunt Facebook page for a variety of snowflake images that you can print out and use.
Cherry Valley Welcomes Visitors to Their Holiday Open House Weekend
Interested in going on a fun day trip this weekend? The Town of Cherry Valley is located a little over an hour from Albany, and on December 5-6, the community will host their annual Holiday Open House Weekend, which is the perfect opportunity to purchase some unique gifts. The Holiday Open House Weekend coincides with the opening of “Light Up Cherry Valley,” a community-wide installation featuring holiday decor on old storefronts.
- Daily Gazette – Scotia resident’s COVID-response 518 Rainbow Hunt sets sights on Snowflakes