Stepping Out

Cherished holiday traditions around Long Island

Old-fashioned celebrations reflect on an earlier era


The holiday countdown continues this weekend with heart-warming celebrations that focus on the festive pleasures of days gone by. The region is filled to the brim with seasonal cheer, so take some time to refocus and enjoy some of these beloved Long Island traditions sure to delight all ages.

Old Bethpage Village
The season always shines brightly at Old Bethpage Village Restoration, which is in full holiday mode for “Candlelight Evenings,” its annual 19th century holiday celebration. The much-loved festivities, which began last weekend and continue Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 15-16, are an opportunity to experience the village’s old-fashioned delights one last time before it closes for the winter, at the conclusion of the holiday program.
A visit to the historic village has become an annual ritual for many this time of year. Candlelight Evenings offers a “Hallmark Card” setting as flickering candles illuminate the village’s historic homes, which are all dressed up – 19th century-style – and eager to welcome visitors.
The village shows off its holiday finery, along with entertainment and varied activities, all situated within the confines of a rural valley setting. Hear popular 19th century music and other forms of traditional entertainment, which varies nightly. Performers include a barbershop quartet, fiddlers playing popular seasonal tunes and traditional American dancers, performing throughout the village. Everyone is welcome to join in the reels, quadrilles and contra dances.
Stories of Christmases past and classic children’s holiday tales are retold each night, along with a sing-along, and a broom-making demonstration in the Luyster Store. Visitors can warm up around the rousing bonfire in the village’s crossroads and enjoy hot, mulled cider and other refreshments at the Noon Inn. There’s also an opportunity to do some holiday shopping at the crafts fair, at the decorated Fairgrounds Exhibition Hall.

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