101 Ideas for Holiday Family Fun in the Capital District | Kids Out and About Albany

101 Ideas for Holiday Family Fun in the Capital District

by Katie Beltramo

KidsOutAndAbout is America's online guide to everything for kids, teens, and families! If you don't already receive our free weekly e-newsletter for the Capital District, sign up today to make sure you're in the know about free stuff, festivals, classes, camps, vacation ideas, and all the best events near you! In the meantime, enjoy the ideas below for holiday family fun in 2019! 

Santa Sightings

Nov 9 Photos with Santa at Colonie Center
Nov 10 Photos with Santa at Crossgates Mall
Nov 15 Photos with Santa at Wilton Mall
Nov 23 Breakfast with Santa at Wilton Mall
Nov 23 Lunch with Santa at Proctor's Theatre 
Nov 29-Dec 1 Home for the Holidays at Albany Institute of History & Art
Nov 30-Dec 1, Dec 7-8, Dec 14-15 Meet Santa at Bob's Trees
Nov 25 - Dec 23 Santa's Magical Express
Dec 7 Breakfast with Santa at New Covenant Nursery School 
Dec 8 Christmas in the Air at Empire State Aerosciences Museum 
Select Sats & Suns Santa will be at Ellms' Tree Farm 
Dec 10 Polar Express PJ Party with Santa at Northshire Bookstore
Dec 10 Brunch with Santa at The Century House


Christmas Community Events

Nov 23 Daily Gazette Holiday Parade
Nov 29 City of Amsterdam Tree Lighting
Nov 30 Small Business Saturday/Holiday Tree
Nov 30 Sinterklaas Send-Off Celebration in Kingston
Dec 1 Holiday on the Avenue in Scotia
Dec 5 Victorian Streetwalk in Saratoga Springs
Dec 6 Johnstown Holiday Parade and Colonial Stroll
Dec 6 Ballston Spa Holiday Parade
Dec 7 Winter Walk in Hudson, NY
Dec 7 Sinterklaas Festival Day in Rhinebeck
Dec 2 Troy Victorian Stroll
Dec 7 Schenectady City Hall-iday
Dec 7 Stillwater Christmas Cheer
Dec 7 Winter Walk in Hudson
Dec 8 Empire State Plaza Tree Lighting
Dec 14 Chatham Winterfest
Dec 15 Annual Victorian Holiday Celebration, Altamont NY


Holiday Theater (or just fun-for-the-family theater)

Nov 10 to 12 Frozen at Proctors
Nov 25 A Magical Cirque Christmas at The Palace
Dec 4 Sister's Christmas Catchism at Proctors
Dec 4-6 Oliver! The Musical at Theatre Institute at Sage
Dec 6 Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Musical at The Palace
Dec 6-8, 13-15 Mr. Scrooge: A Family Musical at Proctors
Dec 9 A Christmas Carol at Proctors
Dec 13-15, 20-22 It's a Wonderful Life at HMT
Dec 14-15 Kris Kringle at Proctors
Dec 17 The Illusionists: Magic of the Holidays at The Palace
Dec 17-19 Annie at Cohoes Music Hall
Dec 18 A Charlie Brown Christmas Live at The Palace
Dec 19-22 CBS 6 Melodies of Christmas at Proctors
Dec 20-22 A Christmas Carol at the Farmers' Museum



Nov 30, Dec 7, 

Dec 20

New Paltz Ballet presents The Nutcracker at Rocking Horse Ranch
Dec 5 Moscow Ballet's Great Russian Nutcracker at the Palace
Dec 5 The Nutcracker: Kingdom of Sweets in Saratoga (not a full performance, but a festival with dance performances)
Dec 7 - 8 Northeast Ballet's Nutcracker at Proctors
Dec 7 -8  The Nutcracker – Saratoga City Ballet at The Egg
Dec 14- 15 Albany Berkshire Ballet's The Nutcracker at The Egg


Holiday Concerts

Dec 1 David Benoit's A Charlier Brown Christmas at The Egg
Dec 1 Handel's Messiah with the Octavo Singers at Union
Dec 4 GNA's Jingle Jam starring Chase Rice at Troy Savings Bank MH
Dec 4 Mannheim Steamroller Christmas at The Palace
Dec 7 Dashin' and Dancin' 2 with The Refrigerators
Dec 8 Capital Area Flute Club Holiday Concert at Empire State Plaza
Dec 10 Handel's Messiah at The Cathedral of All Saints
Dec 11 Holidays at the Hall at Cohoes Music Hall
Dec 12 Big Bad Voodoo Daddy's Wild and Swingin' Holiday Party
Dec 13 Gibson Brothers North Christmas Show at Proctors
Dec 13 Christmas from Dublin at Cohoes Music Hall
Dec 13 McKrells Christmas Show at The Egg
Dec 14 Albany Symphony's Magic of Christmas at The Palace
Dec 15 The Many Moods of Christmas at Troy Savings Bank Music Hall
Dec 15 Joy to the World Children's Holiday Concert
Dec 19 Trans-Siberian Orchestra at the TU
Dec 21 A Nashville Christmas at The Egg


Living Nativities

Dec 15 Altamont Reformed Church
Dec 15 Live Nativity Rotterdam United Methodist Church


Christmas Tree Experience

  Cut Your Own Tree at Ellms Family Farm
  Cut Your Own Tree at Ioka Valley Farm
  Cut Your Own Tree at Bob's Trees
  Cut Your Own Tree at Bailey's Trees
  Cut Your Own Tree at Abel's Trees
Dec 7 - 14 Century Club Festival of Trees
Dec 7 - 22 Festival of Trees at Schenectady Historical Society


Holiday Lights

Nov 29 - Jan 3  Price Chopper/Market 32 Holiday Lights in Washington Park
Dec 13 -14 Santa's Play Land Open House


Crafty Christmas

Nov 10, 17, & 21 Paint a Holiday Light up Wine Bottle at Art in Mind Creative Wellness Studio
Nov 30 Wreath Making Program at Moreau Lake State Park
Nov 30 Scandinavian Christmas Ornaments at Thacher
Dec 7 Build a Bauble at Schenectady County Historical Association
Dec 7 Paint with Santa at the Pottery Place
Dec 13 Paint a Present at the Pottery Place
Dec 12 Winter Decorations Workshop at Mine Kill State Park
Dec 14 Candy Houses at Rensselaer Public Library


Festive Flicks

Nov 29-Dec 1 White Christmas at Proctors
Nov 29 & Dec 1 Scrooged at Proctors
Nov 30 A Christmas Past at Proctors
Nov 30, Dec 1 & 7 Elf at Proctors
Dec 20 It's a Wonderful Life at the Palace
Dec 26 Moana Family Fun Day at The Palace


Ice Skating (mostly indoor facilities and shows)

  Empire State Plaza
  Bethlehem YMCA
  Capital Arena in Clifton Park
  Knickerbacker Ice Arena in Troy
  Messa Rink at Union College
  Schenectady County Recreational Facilities
Dec 12 - 15 Disney on Ice (not technically holiday, but family fun!)
Dec 21 Holiday Happiness Ice Skating Show



Nov 17 Home Depot Menorah Workshop
Dec 22 Chanukah Sky High
Dec 22 Superhero Chanukah Extravaganza



Dec 21 Kwanzaa Umojo Community Celebration in Hudson
Dec 26 - Jan 1 Kwanzaa Celebrations starting with annual New York State Museum and continuing each day at different venues


Journey to an Old-Fashioned Christmas

Nov 30 - Dec 22 Christmas Land at the Vineyard
Nov 29 - Dec 24 Dickens Christmas at Skaneateles
Dec 6 & 7 Pruyn House Holiday Open House
Dec 7 Christmas in Museum Village
Dec 14 Holiday American Girl Tea with Samantha Parkington
Dec 14 Candelit Evening at the Farmers' Museum
Dec 14 & 21 Wintertide Tours at Mabee Farm
Dec 21 A Very Mabee Christmas
Dec 21 Christmas at Clermont Open House


Shopping & Craft Fairs

through Dec 20 Shaker Heritage Craft Fair
Nov 8 Christmas Open House at The Garden Bug in Amsterdam
Nov 16 Holiday Art & Craft Fair at Arkell Museum
Nov 16 Faddegon's Holiday Open House
Nov 22 -24 Country Folk Art Craft Show
Nov 30 Saratoga Annual Holiday Craft Fair
Nov 30 - Dec 1 Home for the Holidays Show at Colonie Center
Dec 7 - 8 Holiday Bazaar at Thacher Nature Center
Dec 8 Taste NY Holiday Market at the NY State Museum
Dec 14 - 16 Rudolph's Runway aHot Colonie Center


New Year's Eve

Dec 31 Kids Count Down at Chuck E Cheese
Dec 29 - Jan 1 Ring in 2020 at Rocking Horse Ranch
Dec 31 First Night Saratoga
Dec 31 First Night Bethlehem
Dec 31 Torchlight and Fireworks Show at Stowe



Nov 17 Stuff the Trucks with Local 7 in Latham
Nov 23 Rock for Tots in Waterford
Nov 24 Saratoga County Convey for Tots
Dec 7 Albany Last 5 K Run
Dec 14 Holiday Open House at Thacher
Dec 26 Holiday Family Fun at Thacher



If we're missing an activity that should be on our list, please email Katie Beltramo, Albany editor of KidsOutAndAbout.com, at katie@kidsoutandabout.com. Please make sure to include a link to the event when you email. Thank you!