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Holiday Fun for Families in Greater Newburyport

By Emily Cowan, Newburyport.Com Correspondent

Macaroni Kid, Newburyport MA

The Newburyport area is unwrapping a holiday season jam-packed with events for kids and families! Santa arrived in Downtown Newburyport – via U.S. Coast Guard boat, of course – on the traditional Sunday after Thanksgiving, lighting a 35-foot evergreen in Market Square and marking the official start of holiday celebrations. (Newbury and Salisbury held their tree lightings the same day.)

The first weeks of December offer plenty of opportunities for Santa-sighting, including Santa “tours around town” in Salisbury and Byfield, courtesy of the town fire departments (yep, that’s Santa in the fire truck). Not to be outdone, Marini Farm in Ipswich will host Santa traveling by tractor, plus free hayrides and hot chocolate for area families. On weekends, children are invited to Inn Street in Downtown Newburyport to visit Santa in his “workshop,” a charmingly decorated cottage situated in the city’s sole pedestrian-only throughway. Arrive early – Santa’s Workshop is an extremely popular destination!

Chanukah celebrations get under way in early December as well, beginning on the first night (Sunday, Dec. 6) with the traditional menorah lighting and singalong in Market Square, hosted by Rabbi Avi Poupko of Congregation Ahavas Achim.

Over the course of the month, holiday decorations will be popping up in windows and window boxes all over town. For inspiration and a fun day out, visit Sea Festival of Trees in Salisbury and Tree Jubilee at Marini Farm. Both annual festivals feature a dazzling array of holiday trees decorated by local businesses and organizations, each to be raffled off for charity. Midway through the month, Newburyport’s 22nd annual Holiday House Tour will throw open the doors to more than a dozen private homes handsomely decorated in the “Coastal Christmas Tidings” style. And don’t miss a trip to Partridge in a Bear Tree, Newburyport’s go-to destination for holiday décor.

If you’re looking for something to put under the tree, shop local with our Holiday Gift Guide featuring boutique Newburyport-area vendors and services you just can’t find anywhere else. We’ve got a special section on classes and activities for kids, plus out-of-the-gift-box ideas for moms, dads, and entire families.

Ipswich is the place for some offbeat holiday celebrations this year. Ipswich Evergreen – held outdoors on the town green – celebrates the winter solstice with make-and-take evergreen wreaths. Nearby Appleton Farms hosts the “Nisse” – a farm elf from Scandinavian folklore – as he presides over children’s holiday crafts, cookies and hot chocolate, and caroling. Santa arrives at Town Wharf for his annual “Jingle Bell Walk” as onlookers jingle their bells along the parade route before gathering at Town Hall for caroling, holiday crafts, and photos with the big man himself.

Finally, no holiday season would be complete without a good old-fashioned singalong. The Firehouse Center for the Arts presents a popular annual singalong likely to sell out again this year, so get tickets early.

For more holiday events for kids and families in the Greater Newburyport area, visit www.newburyport.macaronikid.com. Subscribe to our FREE weekly e-newsletter to have our complete calendar delivered right to your inbox: http://newburyport.macaronikid.com/subscribe/

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