Coastal Holiday Events

Here's just a sampling of seasonal celebrations by the shore.
By Morgan Swanson and Ashley Talley

Alabama
December 7: Nautical Night of Lights Christmas Parade, Orange Beach; 251/968-6904.

December 8: 11th Annual Symphony by the Sea, Perdido Beach Resort, Orange Beach; 251/981-9811 or www.alagulfcoastchamber.com

Alaska
November 22-December 29: Holiday Dolls and Toys, Anchorage; 907/343-4326 or anchoragemuseum.org. Annual holiday exhibition of antique dolls and toys in a winter wonderland setting at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art.

December 15: Currier and Ives Old Fashioned Christmas, Kodiak; 907/486-4126 or kodiak.org. Ice-skating, sleigh rides, hayrides, caroling. Also in Kodiak, Harbor Stars, a Christmas boat parade of brightly decorated vessels; 907/486-4782 or www.kodiak.org.

California
December 13-22: Holiday Cruise of Lights, Huntington Beach decorations; 714/840-7542 or www.philharmonicsociety.org. Narrated cruise through Huntington Harbor to see lighted homes and holiday.

December 14: Christmas at Sea and Old-Time Maritime Christmas, both at the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, San Francisco; 415/561-6662 or www.nps.gov/safr/local/calendar.html.

December 14: Tournament of Lights Holiday Boat Parade, Marina Del Rey; 310/822-9455 or www.mdrlights.org.

December 16-January 13: Holidays at the Morris Graves Museum of Art, Eureka; 707/442-0278.

Connecticut
December 31: First Night Westport/Weston, in Westport and Weston; 203/454-6699 or www.firstnightww.com. Music performances and other non-alcoholic, family-oriented New Year's Eve events.

Delaware
November 29-January 6, 2003: Avenue of Lights, Rehobeth Beach and Dewey Beach; 800/441-1329, or www.beach-fun.com. Light displays.

December 7: Lewes Christmas Society Christmas House Tour and Lewes Christmas Parade, Lewes; 302/645-8073 or www.lewes.com

Florida
November 23-January 31, 2003: Nights of Lights, St. Augustine; 904/825-1004 or www.nightsoflights.com. White Christmas lights on buildings, bridges, and other town features.

December 3-23: Victorian Christmas Stroll, Henry B. Plant Museum, Tampa; 813/254-1891, ext. 4 or www.plantmuseum.com.

December 14: Winterfest Boat Parade, Fort Lauderdale; 954/767-0686 or www.winterfestparade.com.

December 14: Lighted Boat Parade, Key West; 305/292-3773 or www.schoonerwharf.com/boatparade.htm.

Georgia
December 21-January 1, 2003: 12 Days of Christmas: A Sea Island Family Holiday, Sea Island; 800/732-4752 or seaisland.com. Carriage rides, caroling, and other events.

Hawaii
November 29-December 1: Christmas in the Country, Volcano Art Center, Hawaii; 808/967-7565 or www.volcanoartcenter.org. Annual Wreath exhibit, other events and attractions.

December 28: Traditional Mochi (Rice Cake) Pounding for New Year, Wailea; 808/963-6422 or www.alternative-hawaii.com/akiko.

Louisiana
November 29-30: Cajun Christmas Bayou Parade, Breaux Bridge; 337/332-8500 or www.bayouparade.com. Parade of lighted floats on Bayou Teche.

November 29-December 25: Christmas on the Cajun Coast, Franklin, Patterson, and Morgan City; 800/256-2931 or www.cajuncoast.com/xmas.html. Numerous family activities, including a trail of lights, decorated historic houses, and parades (land and water).

Maine
November 22-December 21: Festival of Lights, Rockland; 800/562-2529 or www.therealmaine.com. Santa arrives by lobster boat to start the celebration.

December 6-8: Christmas by the Sea, Camden; 207/236-4044 or www.camdeninns.com/events.htm

December 5-8 and 14-15: Christmas Prelude, Kennebunkport; www.christmasprelude.com. Arts and crafts, music, food, and other events.

Maryland
November 14-January 2: Winterfest of Lights, Ocean City; 800/626-2326, 410/250-0125, or www.ococean.com. Light display.

December 14: Eastport Yacht Club Lights Parade, Annapolis; 410/990-1781 or www.eastportyc.org.

Massachusetts
November 23-December 31: Nantucket Noel, Nantucket; 508-228-1700 or www.nantucketchamber.org. Theatrical performances, concerts, exhibitions and the Christmas Stroll (a window-decorating contest, more than 150 decorated trees, and other attractions; December 6-9).

November 29: Christmas in Orleans, Orleans; 508/255-7203 or www.capecod-orleans.com. Candlelight stroll and carols.

December 6-8: Christmas by the Sea, Falmouth; 800/526-8532 or www.falmouth-capecod.com. Events include caroling, tree lighting, and a parade.

Mississippi
December 1-January 10, 2003: Christmas Festival of Lights, Gulfport; 228/868-5907 or www.gulfcoast.org. Light displays.

December 9-28: Annual Ethnic Christmas Trees of Tullis, Biloxi; 228/435-6293, 228/435-6308, or www.gulfcoast.org. Trees decorated in the traditional manner of their homelands by Biloxi ethnic groups at Tullis-Toledano Manor.

New Hampshire
December 7-8 and 14-15: Candlelight Stroll, Strawbery Banke Museum, Portsmouth; 603/422-7545 or www.strawberybanke.org.

New Jersey
November 22-January 5, 2003: Holiday Season Tours and Events, Cape May; 800/275-4278, 609/884-5404, or www.capemaymac.org. The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts puts on tours of houses, inns, and holiday lights; food and champagne events; teas; concerts; and more.

December 7-8: Hoboken Holiday Crafts Fair, Hoboken City Hall, Hoboken; 201/420-2207 or www.njgeodata.state.nj.us/coe.

December 14: The Pearl of the Bayshore Holiday Candlelight House Tour, Keyport; 732/946-2711 or www.keyportonline.com.

New York
November 29-January 1: A Chorus Tree, South Street Seaport, New York; 212/732-8257 or www.southstreetseaport.com. Performances on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays by The Big Apple Chorus at a decorated tree.

December 6-8: Port Jefferson Village Charles Dickens's Festival, Port Jefferson; 631/473-4724 or www.portjeff.com

North Carolina
November 29-December 31: Island of Lights, Pleasure Island (Carolina Beach/Kure Beach/Fort Fisher) ; 910/458-3514 or www.islandoflights.com. Includes Holiday Parade, December 6; Holiday Flotilla boat parade, December 7; Tour of Homes, December 14; and New Year's Eve Countdown Party and Fireworks, December 31.

December 3-19: Christmas by the Sea Festival, Southport; 800/457-6964 or www.christmasbysea.com.

December 6-January 6: Holiday Lighting of the Battleship North Carolina, Wilmington; 910/251-5797 or www.battleshipnc.com/visitors.

Oregon
November 28-January 5: Holiday Lights, Shore Acres State Park; 541/888-3732 or www.shoreacres.net.

November 23: Christmas Caroling Parade, Seaside; 800/444-6740 or www.stateoforegon.com/seaside.

November 29-December 1: Holiday by the Sea, Winchester Bay; 541/271-4471 or www.winchesterbay.org.

December 7-29: Nature's Coastal Holiday, Azalea Park, Brookings; 541/469-0157 or www.virtualcities.com/ons/or/y/ory5005.htm. Light displays.

Rhode Island
November 30-December 31: Christmas in Newport, Newport; 401/849-6454 or www.christmasinnewport.org. Tree lightings, caroling, performances, and other events.

South Carolina
November 15-January 1: Holiday Festival of Lights, James Island County Park, Charleston; 843/795-7275 or www.holidayfestivaloflights.com. Light displays, train and carousel rides, marshmallow roasts, gift shops, concerts, and other attractions.

December 14: Holiday Tour of Houses & Gardens; 843/722-2706, ext. 39, or www.gibbes.com.

Texas
December 7: Harbor Lights Festival, Corpus Christi; 361/985-1555 or www.harborlightsfestival.com. Includes boat parade and fireworks.

December 6: Christmas Tidings on the Gulf, Quintana Beach County Park, Quintana; 979/864-1541 or www.tourtexas.com/brazosport.

Virginia
November 15-January 1: Holiday Lights at the Beach, Virginia Beach. Light displays; 757/491-7866 or www.coastalvirginia.com.

November 23-December 31: Holidays in the City, Norfolk; 757/664-6620, 800/368-3097, or www.norfolkcvb.com. A variety of events celebrating Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year's Eve.

December 6: Yorktown Lighted Boat Parade, Yorktown; 757/890-4970 or www.yorkcounty.gov/cyc.

December 28: Holidays at Sea, The Mariners' Museum, Newport News; 800/581-7245 or www.mariner.org.

Washington
December 1-23: Argosy Christmas Ship Festival, Puget Sound area; 206/623-1445, 800/642-7816, or www.argosycruises.com. Decorated ships and boats parade from port to port, with musical performances, bonfires, and other festivities.

December 7: Santa by the Sea Maritime Museum Tree Lighting, Westport; 360/268-0078 or www.westportwa.com/museum.

Great Lakes
November 15-January 12: 56 Continuous Nights of Lights, Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada; 519/376-4440, ext. 225, or www.estivallights.ca. Light displays, parades, music and theater performances, tours, and other attractions.

December 5-8: Victorian Sleighbell Parade & Old Christmas Weekend, Manistee, Michigan; 231/723-2575, 800/288-2286, or www.manisteecountychamber.com.

Canada
November 29-December 23: Carol Ship Parade of Lights, Vancouver, British Columbia; 604/688-7246, 800/663-1500, or www.carolships.com. Caroling aboard decorated ships parading around Vancouver waters.

November 15-January 3: Wintertide: The Maritime Electric Victorian Holiday Celebration, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; 902/629-1864, 800/955-1864, or www.visitcharlottetown.com.