Holiday countdown: Welcome Christmas decor, music

Smart Holiday Countdown logoThanksgiving is officially over, providing room for the Christmas spirit to take over. Enjoy the season this week with a look back at history, some holiday decorations, music and even  a parade.

Check out these offerings in southcentral Pennsylvania this week:

  • Starting Friday and running through Jan. 5, see how families celebrated Christmas during the Civil War at a Cumberland County Historical Society exhibit called “Civil War Christmas” — everything from presents and caroling to Christmas trees — and even Santa Claus.
  • Welcome Christmas with the annual Gettysburg parade on Saturday, with bands, floats, costumed characters, dancers and — of course — St. Nick himself. Stick around for the Christmas tree lighting in Lincoln Square.
  • Snag inspiration for your holiday decorations (or just enjoy others’ work!) on the Stewartstown Historical Society Holiday Home Tour on Saturday. Five homes plus the Stewartstown Presbyterian Church will be open, and the church will also offer a soup and sandwich lunch before kickoff.
  • Or, if you’re closer to Harrisburg, check out Christmas at Fort Hunter, which opens Saturday and runs through Dec. 23. Guided tours highlight holiday trimmings and customs.
  • Find a few decorations of your own at Christkindlmarkt Holiday Arts & Crafts Market Sunday in York. Attendees will be asked to bring a canned good to donate to the York County Food Bank in lieu of admission.
  • Wind down with Festival Choral Vespers for Advent on Sunday night at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg. Candelit choral music, prayer and meditation will be offered at this free event.

Phew! Lots going on. Want more details on any of these events, or want to check out Smart’s Holiday Countdown in full? We’ve got you covered.

Sarah Chain

I'm an avid reader and book lover living and working in downtown York. Follow me on Twitter at @sarahEchain.

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