This weekend, the holiday season is in full swing. You won’t be able to make a move without bumping into a Santa or a peppermint-flavored food item. Embrace it with these fun activities all on our beautiful peninsula.
Where: Locations all over the city, with Congress St. between Brown and State Streets closed to cars
When: Various times, generally beginning at 5:00 pm
Cost: Varies by event
Every First Friday brings fun events, art, and performances by local musicians, but this month’s is extra special. The city is embracing the holiday spirit by shutting down a chunk of Congress Street in proper Christmas fair style. On Congress between Brown and State Streets, art walkers can browse and mingle, uninterrupted by cars. The talk of the town is the outdoor circus taking place at the cross of Park and Congress Streets. The New Circus Conservatory of America will perform between 6 and 8 pm, barring “extreme” weather conditions. Fingers crossed! A full list of events can be found here.
Where: East End Community School, 195 North Street
When: Friday 6:00 pm – 9:00pm, Saturday 10:00 am- 5:00 pm, Sunday 11:00am – 4:00 pm
Cost: crafts and items from local vendors for sale
Get your holiday shopping finished early, and even pick up something for yourself at this year’s SEA Holiday Sale. There’s no better way to buy local than to visit the artists and craftsmen displaying their goods at the East End Community School this weekend. The Society for East End Arts hosts this annual event to encourage patronage of local artists. With all these vendors in one place, it’s like shopping in the mall, except with quality local products and not depressing.
3. Live out your drunken Christmas fantasy with Santacon
Where: Begins at Pat’s Pizza, 30 Market Street
When: Saturday 4:00 pm – 1 am
Cost: Pay as you drink/eat
The premise is simple: get dressed up in your Santa Claus chicest, bring an item to donate to the Family Crisis Services Domestic Violence Shelter, and drink and be merry. Santacon is the annual event held in cities all over the country, where huge groups of locals get dressed up in holiday-themed costumes and go on a pub crawl. There’s a schedule of bars and pubs to visit, and the whole thing is surprisingly well-planned considering it’s guaranteed to get pretty sloppy. Santas will take over this city come late Saturday afternoon, so if you can’t beat ’em, you might as well drink with ’em!
Photo Credit: MaineToday
Christmas cheer, like candy, can be a little sickening if you consume too much of it. David Sedaris’s snarky tale in his essay Santaland Diaries sheds light on the darker side of Christmas. Beloved by many, this story will be preformed on stage for your (adults only) viewing pleasure. Who better to dish the dirt on Christmas, than a former Macy’s New York City Elf?
The Christmas at the Cathedral is one of Portland’s oldest Christmas events. For 26 years running, The Choral Arts Society performs traditional Christmas songs in the dramatic setting of the Church of the Immaculate Conception. So take a moment amidst the holiday craziness and appreciate the beauty of the season.