Holiday Events: Nov. 23-Dec. 3

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Holiday Fairs

Freeport’s Sparkle Weekend, Dec. 2-3 Free horse-drawn wagon rides, Parade of Lights, free hot cocoa, visits with Santa, talking Christmas tree. sparklecelebration.com.

Holly Jolly Fair, First Parish Church, 40 Main St., Freeport. Dec. 2, 5-8 p.m., cake party, cookie walk, quilted & knit items, jewelry, soaps, crafts. Dec. 3, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., fish chowder & Italian sandwich lunch, cookie walk, knitted & quilted items, soaps, jewelry, crafts. 

Thursday 12/1

Holiday Bazaar and Wreath Sale,  9 a.m.-3 p.m., Mid Coast Hospital Café and Conference Rooms, 123 Medical Center Dr., Brunswick. More than 100 arrangements of coastal Maine greens, seashells, pine cones, and other natural local materials. All proceeds benefit essential hospital projects. 

Saturday 12/3

80th annual Christmas Fair, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 27 Pleasant St., Brunswick. Silent auction, handmade gifts, decorations, jewelry, knits & stitches, greens, gourmet ready-to-bake entrees. Free pictures with Santa 10 a.m.- noon. Lunch served 11 a.m.-1 p.m. 

Holiday Craft Fair, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Pejepscot Terrace, Jordan Avenue, Brunswick. Crafts, cookie walk, white elephant, hot dog lunch.

Annual Holiday Craft Fair, Poinsettia, & Wreath Sale, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Morrison Center, 60 Chamberlain Road, Scarborough. Forty local crafters, Santa, raffles, bake sale, homemade lunch, holiday greens and plants.

“A Vintage Christmas,” 9 a.m.-1 p.m., First Congregational Church of Scarborough, 167 Black Point Road. Handmade items with a Maine theme, greens, vintage & collectibles, books, quilts, crafts, jewelry, baked goods, candy, chicken pot pie lunch.

Christmas Fair, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., 236 Pine Point Road, Scarborough. Haddock chowder luncheon 11 a.m.-1 p.m., crafters, wreaths & centerpieces, baked goods, grandma’s attic, and raffles. 

Ivy Rebekah Lodge #5 annual fair, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., 179 Ridgeland Ave., South Portland. Novelties, baked goods, jewelry, candy.

Winter Wonderland Christmas Fair, 9 a.m.- 2 p.m., Peoples United Methodist Church, 310 Broadway, South Portland. Jewelry, knits, crafts, baked goods, books, and trash and treasure. Lunch with chowder, chicken salad, dogs and chili served 11 a.m.-1 p.m. 

Christmas Fair, 9 a.m.–2:30 p.m., First Parish Church, 116 Main St., Yarmouth, Baked goods, handcrafts, special children’s shopping room, recycled holiday and attic treasures, silent auction, cookie walk, greens and wreaths, Kris Kringle’s lunch.

Collections & Donations

Toys for Tots: bring a new unwrapped toy to ReVision Energy at Scratch Baking Company 7 a.m.- 6 p.m. Dec. 10 and 7 a.m.- noon Dec. 11 and receive a free cup of solar-heated coffee.  

Tree Lightings

Friday 11/25

Portland Tree Lighting, 4-8 p.m., Monument Square, Santa, life-size snow globe, live music, sing-along, wagon rides.  

Saturday 11/26

Tree Lighting Ceremony with Santa, carriage rides, hot cocoa & cookies, 2-5 p.m.; visit with Santa & Frosty, 3-5 p.m.; tree lighting, 5 p.m., Brunswick High School Chorus perform 4-5 p.m., Town Mall, Brunswick.

A Portland Tradition: Kotzschmar Christmas with Cornils

Tickets are now on sale for Kotzschmar Christmas with Cornils, an annual celebration of music and holiday cheer with the King of Instruments and Portland’s Municipal Organist Ray Cornils.  Cornils and the Kotzschmar organ will be joined by a talented group of ensembles performing the best in holiday music. Cornils describes Musica de Filia as “a poised and powerful chorus which combines fresh and vigorous well-trained youthful voices with Jaye Churchill’s uplifting spirit.” Parish Ringers hand bell choir of Brunswick will perform familiar classics. Rounding out the performance will be Kotzschmar Festival Brass. The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 20. Tickets are $23-$41. Reserve at PortTIX, 20 Myrtle St., Portland, and over the phone at 842-0800.

All aboard the Candy Cane Train

The Candy Cane Train, a signature event of the Brunswick-based nonprofit Tri-County Literacy, will mark its 11th year with a new partner, the Amtrak Downeaster. The popular, holiday-themed family event will run two, 75-minute trips daily from Brunswick Station/Visitor Center to Portland and back on Saturday, Dec. 10, and Sunday, Dec. 11. Trains will depart each day at 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

Inside Brunswick Station, families can meet Mrs. Claus, write letters to Santa, view model trains on display, enjoy hot chocolate, and purchase holiday goods.

On the train, Santa’s elves will share cookies, Story Readers will enchant with Christmas stories, the Nor’Easters Barbershop Chorus will perform holiday songs, and Santa will visit each car.  

Tickets are $20 a person at candycanetrain.org or Brown Paper Tickets at 1-800-838-3006 (event #2657164). 

All proceeds will benefit Tri-County Literacy, which provides free family and adult literacy services throughout the Mid-Coast area. 

Victoria Mansion offers dazzling array of holiday events

Victoria Mansion opens Nov. 25 for its 33rd annual Christmas celebration. During the holidays, visitors to the National Historic Landmark will enjoy dazzling decorations by local florists and designers highlighting the Mansion’s beautiful interiors. Designers will evoke the nostalgia and colloquialism of the famous late 19th and early 20th century print makers, Currier & Ives.

The Mansion will be open 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25 to Sunday, Jan. 8 (closed Christmas and New Year’s Day). Evening hours will be offered Mondays, with last admission at 6:30 p.m. 

In addition, this year the following slate of holiday events will be offered:

  • Saturdays, 10 a.m. – Stories on the Staircase. Children ages 3-5 are invited to join a free story hour and a tour tailored just for them.
  • Wednesday, Nov. 30, 6 p.m. – Annual Christmas Gala. Enjoy drinks and hors d’oeuvres amid the glittering decorations and speak with this year’s designers.
  • Friday, Dec. 2, 5 p.m. – Five Dollar First Friday. Victoria Mansion will be open for $5 from 5-8 p.m. (last admission 7:30). Reservations not needed. A free exhibit highlighting art and crafts created by Victoria Mansion volunteers and staff will be open upstairs over the Carriage House Museum Shop adjacent to the Mansion.
  • Sunday, Dec. 4, 11, 18, 5:30/6/6:30/7 p.m. – Night of the Nutcracker. Victoria Mansion and Portland Ballet will present an event filled with holiday wonder. Children are invited to bring their parents to see the Mansion, decorated for the Christmas season, and meet dancers dressed for Portland Ballet’s Victorian Nutcracker. There will be music, dance performances, and every child leaves with a special treat.

Admission ranges from free for members and children 6 and younger to $15 for the general public.  

For more information about the seasonal events or to reserve tickets, visit victoriamansion.org and click “Events” or call 772-4841.

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