RALEIGH - The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources has a bevy of holiday-related events going on all over our state.
From events at Tryon Palace and our area aquariums to festive activities in towns such as Beaufort, Bath and Creswell, there's a lot to check out between now and the end of 2017. The NCDNCR has put together this holiday list you can check out below for events in the east and by clicking here for events statewide.
Nov. 20-Jan. 1. N.C. Aquarium-Ft. Fisher. Cape Fear Festival of Trees. The Lower Cape Fear Hospice hosts this beloved tradition amidst the inspiring backdrop of the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. Thanks to the generosity of the presenting sponsor First Citizens Bank, visitors will delight in dozens of dazzling, decorated trees in a unique aquatic setting. Free with admission.
Nov. 20-Jan. 4. N.C. Aquarium-Roanoke Island. Help our furry friends -- anyone donating a seven pound or more bag of pet food will receive free admission that day. Anyone donating pet food, a toy or cleaning item will be entered to win a painting created by one of our river otters! Kitty litter, paper towels and peroxide among other needed items.
Ongoing through Jan. 7. Museum of the Cape Fear, Fayetteville. Poe House Tour. Enhance your holidays with a tour of the seasonally decorated 1897 Poe House. Admire the big parlor tree, long hallways and tall windows decorated with greenery. Tours given Tuesday through Saturday, hours vary. Free.
Nov. 24-26. Tryon Palace, New Bern. Festive Holiday Weekend Kickoff. Enjoy holiday tours, decorations and movies. Take themed tours through the grounds of the palace and historic houses, each decorated for a different time period in traditions from the 18th to 20th centuries. Tours continue through Jan. 3. Times vary. Toys for Tots drop off through Dec. 11. Fee.
Nov. 25. N.C. Maritime Museum, Southport. Victorian Holiday. Unconventional decorations are the hallmark of the museum's Victorian Holiday. This tradition continues with seaside-scapes, starfish painting and spiders for good luck. Enjoy stories of the Christmas spider and Father Time. Appropriate for all ages. Registration required. 1-3 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 1. Museum of the Albemarle, Elizabeth City. Gingerbread House Workshop. Learn the history of gingerbread and take part in the annual gingerbread house workshop led by the Lovin' Oven. Kids welcomed from ages one to 100. Fee.
Dec. 1. Tryon Palace, New Bern. Chamber Music by Candlelight. UNC-Wilmington's Early Music Consort will perform in the palace council chamber by candlelight. Reception follows with light desserts, coffee and wine in the Commission House. 7 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 2. Museum of the Albemarle, Elizabeth City. An Appalachian Mountain Christmas! Spend the day with an Appalachian Mountain Christmas during WWI, hear the story and visit with characters from "A Perfect Christmas Tree," view the film "The Polar Express," and enjoy refreshments and activities. Also, School Days for the weeks of Nov. 27, Dec. 4 and Dec. 11; School Days preregistration required. Free.
Dec. 2. Roanoke Island Festival Park, Manteo. 208th Army Band Christmas Concert. Approximately 40 warrior musicians based in Concord will promote esprit de corps and the magic of the holidays in a performance of jazz, rock, concert music and patriotic selections in the film theater. 6 p.m. Free.
Dec. 2. Historic Bath. Colonial Christmas to Victorian Christmas. Learn the difference between a Colonial Christmas and a Victorian Christmas during an evening walking tour through the Palmer Marsh House and the Bonner House with costumed interpreters. 4-6 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 2. N.C. Maritime Museum, Beaufort. Crystal Coast Christmas Flotilla. Boats, yachts, oars, kayaks and commercial vessels decorated for the season can be seen at 5:30 p.m. on the Morehead City waterfront and at 6:15 p.m. on the Beaufort waterfront. All decorated boats are judged and prizes for excellence and creativity are awarded at the Awards Party after the Flotilla in the Harvey W. Smith Watercraft Center. 6 p.m. Fee to participate, enter by Dec. 2. Free to observe.
Dec. 2. Bentonville Battlefield, Four Oaks. A Civil War Christmas. Enjoy cookies and cider while listening to period music and greetings from costumed interpreters. Military interpreters will discuss how the common soldier spent time on furlough with family and friends. 10 a.m-4 p.m. Free.
Dec. 3. Somerset Place, Creswell. 28th Annual Christmas Program. Celebrate Christmas at an antebellum plantation and be inspired by fresh greenery and natural arrangements that adorn the buildings. Tour of the buildings and grounds with traditional Christmas music in the air and visit St. Nicholas. Sample tasty black-eyed peas, homemade desserts and hearth cooked cornbread with spiced tea. 1 p.m. Free.
Dec. 3. Museum of the Cape Fear, Fayetteville. Holiday Jubilee. Performances by the Coventry Carolers on the front porch of the Poe House, which will be beautifully decorated in Victorian style and open for tours. The Carolina Chordsmen also will perform. Smell goodies cooking on the 1902 stove and take photos with Santa! 1-5 p.m. Free.
Dec. 5 and 7. Aycock Birthplace, Fremont. Christmas Candlelight Tours. Smell the fragrances of food cooked on the open hearth, and experience the magic of a shadow play surrounded by traditional decorations. Make a Christmas craft Dec. 5. Enjoy the sounds of the Harmony Boys for a bluegrass Christmas Dec. 7. 6:30-9 p.m. Fee; ages four and under free.
Dec. 5-12. Historic Edenton. Public Schools Art Show: What the Holidays Mean to Me. Historic Edenton in partnership with Edenton-Chowan Public School art teachers present a holiday art show, Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Dec 9. Holiday Treats reception 6-8 p.m.in the Visitor Center. Free.
Dec. 6. N.C. Symphony, Tarboro. A Classic Holiday Pops. Enjoy a spectacular celebration with joyful holiday classics—plus our popular sing-a-long! Edgecombe Community College. 7:30 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 7. N.C. Symphony, Jacksonville. A Classic Holiday Pops. Enjoy a spectacular celebration with joyful holiday classics—plus our popular sing-a-long! Jacksonville High School. 7:30 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 8. N.C. Symphony, Louisburg. A Classic Holiday Pops. Enjoy a spectacular celebration with joyful holiday classics—plus our popular sing-a-long! Louisburg College. 7:30 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 8. N.C. Maritime Museum, Southport. Costumed Holiday History Tour. Enjoy special costumed tours of the exhibit gallery led by a Victorian lady, Civil War soldier or gentleman pirate. Learn about Colonial and Victorian holiday traditions and the 1878 shipwreck that almost stole Christmas. Registration required. 3-5 p.m. Free.
Dec. 8. Historic Edenton. Caroling in the Courthouse with the Albemarle Sounds. Come enjoy your favorite Christmas songs in the historic 1767 Chowan County Courthouse. 6-7 p.m. Free.
Dec. 8-9, 16-17. Historic Edenton. Santa in the Kitchen. Visit Santa in the historic James Iredell House kitchen where he will take wishes and pose for pictures that you take. 4-7 p.m. Free.
Dec. 8-9. Historic Edenton. Iredell House Christmas Groaning Board. So many cookies will be present that the table will "groan!" The Edenton Tea Party Daughters of the American Revolution and James Iredell Association join Historic Edenton in hosting this event. 1-5 p.m. Santa visits 4-7 p.m. Free.
Dec. 9. N.C. Maritime Museum, Southport. Holiday at the Museum. Visitors will marvel at the Winter Wonderland train display. Local choral groups, performances by individual musicians and visitors singing along will provide continuous holiday music. Cookie decorating, cartoons and letters to Santa are part of the fun. Hot soups, chili, cookies, hot chocolate and door prizes too. Noon to 5 p.m. Free.
Dec. 9. N.C. Aquarium-Roanoke Island. Great White Fishmas. Children can participate in reindeer games, make crafts with aquarium elves, visit Mrs. Claus's kitchen and visit with Santa. Aquarium musicians will do "fishy" takes on classic Christmas carols. Fun for all ages. 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. Included with regular admission.
Dec. 9. Historic Bath. Christmas Open House. A day of fun with music at various times in the Palmer Marsh and Bonner Houses. Activities include reading of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas," cooking and apple press demonstrations in the Bonner House. Visitors can enjoy apple cider and gingerbread. Free.
Dec. 9. N.C. Aquarium-Pine Knoll Shores. Santa by the Sea. Enjoy special treats and games in a seasonally decorated aquarium! Make holiday cards and an ornament, have a photo with Santa as part of admission for ages 12 and under. A new treat will be magic shows throughout the day. Fee.
Dec. 9. Fort Fisher, Kure Beach. Victorian Christmas Open House. Enjoy the delightful sounds of Masonboro Parlor and John Golden and learn 19th century dance steps as well. A guest presenter will examine "Santa Claus: the Man, the Myth, and the Legend." Also shop in the museum store while enjoying light refreshments. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Free.
Dec. 9. Historic Halifax. Christmas in Halifax. The whole town celebrates with a lively Christmas parade at 2 p.m., a visit with Santa at the Historic Halifax Visitor center afterwards, a homemade lunch of homemade Brunswick stew, ham biscuits, sandwiches and desserts at the Methodist Church, which is a church fundraiser. Tour seasonally decorated historic buildings. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Event free.
Dec. 9. CSS Neuse, Kinston. Christmas Open House and Foster's Raid Exhibit Opening. Exhibit on the raid of Union Gen. John Foster from occupied New Bern into the interior with presentation by Randy Sauls, Goldsborough Bridge Battlefield Commission, at 11 a.m. Kinston Christmas parade at 10 a.m. and afterwards enjoy hot cider and cookies at CSS Neuse. Exhibit opening fee; refreshments free.
Dec. 9 and 16. Tryon Palace, New Bern. Seasons of Giving: A Candlelight Christmas Celebration. A famed North Carolina tradition returns in 2017 with beautiful new decorations and heartwarming vignettes illuminated by the glow of candlelight. 4:30-9:30 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 10. Brunswick Town, Winnabow. An 18th Century Christmas. Join us to see how American colonists celebrated Christmas. Costumed interpreters will provide guided tours of St. Philips Anglican Church on the hour. Enjoy Colonial refreshments in the Visitor Center, traditional games, or try your hand at Moravian paper stars and other crafts. The highlight of the evening will be an authentic period candlelit service in the ruins of St. Philips Anglican Church. The service will be 5-5:30 p.m. Free.
Dec. 13. N.C. Symphony, New Bern. A Classic Holiday Pops. Enjoy a spectacular celebration with joyful holiday classics—plus our popular sing-a-long! Come early to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus! Riverfront Convention Center. 7 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 16-17. Historic Edenton. Grinch in the Courthouse. Rumor has it that the Grinch will be in the historic 1767 Chowan County Courthouse. Families and children are welcome to meet the Grinch 4-7 p.m. Free.
Dec. 16-17. N.C. Aquarium-Ft. Fisher. Santa by the Sea. A magical holiday experience with Santa and his aquatic friends. Meet a live penguin, play games and take photos with Santa – who also will dive with sharks, eels and some favorite turtle friends. Free with admission.
Dec. 20. N.C. Symphony, Wilmington. A Classic Holiday Pops. Enjoy a spectacular celebration with joyful holiday classics—plus our popular sing-a-long! Come early to meet Santa! Cape Fear Community College 7:30 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 20. N.C. Symphony, Wilmington. A Classical Christmas. Celebrate with classical tunes of the season, including "Winter Wonderland," :Sleigh Ride," "A Chanukah Celebration," a pops sing-along and more. Cape Fear Community College. 7:30 p.m. Fee.
Dec. 22. Goose Creek State Park, Washington. Tree Cookie Ornaments, Arts and Crafts. Learn to make old-fashioned holiday decorations. Free. 2 p.m.
Dec. 31. Fort Macon State Park, Atlantic Beach. New Year's Eve Cannon Blast. Send the old year out with a bang at Fort Macon! 6 p.m. Free.
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