To kick off the Essex Holiday Festival, people gather in town for the Lighting of the Memory Tree. This special occasion give people to reflect as a group on the loved one that have gone before them. The town’s children’s bell choir performs in the background.
Shop for the perfect handmade gifts in a seaside Christmas village! Join us for a town-wide festival and holiday market, with maker-themed events in the shops, festive food, holiday music and attractions—even horse drawn carriage rides! Plan your visit today!
A Town-wide Festival!
Start holiday festivities off early, celebrating the Apples and Wine Festival, the first weekend in November. Enjoy all things apple, try our wine and enjoy live music all weekend. Festivities will include Wine tasting*, Live music, Hands-on cider-pressing demonstrations, Make-Your-Own Apple Pie, Apple samples, Hayrides, as well as loads of apple goodies made fresh in the bakery including hot apple crisp and cider donut caramel sundaes.
Visiting Castle Hill at Christmas is a time-honored tradition for many New England families. Don't miss this year's spectacular "Christmas by the Sea". Each room in our 1920s mansion is festively decorated by florists, designers, garden clubs, or volunteers. You'll find live music and dance, fresh baked cookies and cider, a treasure hunt, family activities, and a visit with Santa.
Pumpkin Fest is a family-friendly afternoon full of fun activities that includes pumpkin carving, activities and games, arts and crafts, a DJ and costume dance party, bouncy house and face painting from 12:30-3 p.m. All activities are open to all and free. The children's costume parade starts at 3:15 p.m. and the pumpkin illumination is at about 5 p.m. at Weaver Pond in Patton Park.
Come to the Rowley Town Common for an afternoon of family fun! There will be prizes, crafts, giveaways, food trucks, live music and DJ, magic and pony rides. Games will include Jenga, PGS Plinko, Pumpkin Bowling, Scarecrow Building, Beanbag Toss, PGS Basketball Hoop Shoot, any many others! There's also a chance to show off your Halloweeen costume in our costume contest! Hosted by the Pine Grove PTA.
Come to Ipswich MA for a night of lights, illumination and light inspired artistry! There will be live entertainment, bonfires and luminaries along the ipswich River, Interactive dance, art shows lasers and more!
The Essex Division of the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce will sponsor the annual Essex ClamFest in Memorial Park in Essex. The highlight of the day will be the Clam Chowder Tasting, a competition that pits area restaurants against one another to determine who serves the best clam chowder on Cape Ann. Local restaurants are expected to serve up their favorite chowder recipes starting at noon and ending about 2 pm. Judges of the chowder will be announced in advance. The public will also have the opportunity to sample and vote on their favorite chowder.
Come to the Middleton Pumpkin Festival for a full day of fun for the whole family! There will be live entertainment including a magic show and dance performances, a costume parade, hayrides, martial arts, a bake sale, a book sale, demonstrations by local organizations and great food!
The annual Rockport Harvestfest celebration features the best regional bounty of the season — all in an unbeatable setting. New England food producers gather under a giant tent on one of Rockport’s historic working wharves to celebrate the best of local food with fresh lobster, chowder, pastries, grass-fed beef, wood-fired pizza, small-batch jams, locally-grown produce and more. Local craft beers and wine produced in Massachusetts are on hand, along with Rockport’s own Twin Lights, with soda crafted from the 120-year-old company’s original recipes.
Tuesday, December 11
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