'Tis the season to gather! Whether you're returning home for the holidays or visiting for the first time, there is so much to do in Rochester, NY as you gather with friends and family. We've pulled together the ultimate guide to the holiday season that will keep you busy until you ring in the new year. Whatever you choose to do, share your adventures in Rochester with us using #VisitROC!



Sweet Creations, Wreath Display, and Tabletop Tree Display

November 11 Through December 31 | George Eastman Museum

The annual holiday displays will fill the museum with familiar cheer again this year. Sweet Creations features dozens of cleverly designed and deliciously decorated gingerbread houses. See dozens of uniquely decorated wreaths on view and decorated trees throughout the historic mansion. 

Holiday Afternoon Tea in the Village

November 21, December 13-14, 20-21 | Genesee Country Village & Museum

Don’t miss this exclusive holiday event at GCV&M! Our Afternoon Tea includes a selection of tea varieties, finger sandwiches, and sweet treats. Wine and mimosas will also be available for purchase.

Holiday Show 2023

November 28 - December 23 | Image City Photography

The 19th Annual Holiday Show features the nine Gallery Partners and 11 Guest Photographers.

Santa at Stokoe

November 26 & December 3 | Stokoe Farms

Santa Claus will be returning to Stokoe Farms to check on all the good little girls and boys. Plan a trip to the farm with the kiddos to meet the jolly old elf. He is excited to get all their lists! Be sure to bring your cameras to capture wonderful memories at the old-fashioned Christmas Tree Farm.

Park Avenue Holiday Open House

November 30 | Park Avenue

The most wonderful time of the year is fast approaching, and the Park Avenue Merchants Association will be holding the Park Avenue Holiday Open House on Thursday, November 30th, from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM. The beloved annual event promises an evening of festive delight, perfect for the entire family.

The Old Farm's Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony with Elsa, Anna and Friends

December 1 | OFC Creation's Old Farm Café

For the first time in forever it is time for the holidays to begin! Join Queen Elsa and Princess Anna as they signify the beginning of the most wonderful time of year by lighting the Christmas tree! Accompanied by their memorable friends, Elsa and Anna invite attendees of all ages with their families to take part in this interactive event.

Genesee Keg Tree Lighting

December 1 | Genesee Brew House

The Genesee Keg Tree Lighting Event is back and scheduled for Friday, December 1, from 5 to 9 p.m. at the Genesee Brew House. The iconic Rochester holiday tradition will include an exciting countdown and lighting at 6:30 p.m., along with local food trucks, two beer trucks and plenty of holiday cheer.

Holiday Pet Photos

December 1-3 | Lollypop Farm

Begin your holiday season at Lollypop Farm! Bring the family along to create festive, winter-themed memories with your pet. Santa will be available to join in photos if you wish.

Roc Holiday Village

December 1-23 | Martin Luther King Jr., Memorial Park

Roc Holiday Village is Rochester’s annual holiday festival that brings the magic of the season to people of all ages. The 17 day festival offers family friendly events on Wednesdays - Sundays throughout the month of December. Features include a unique shopping village, free visits and photos with Santa, free ice skating & skate rentals, and indoor and outdoor bar, food trucks, Santa's Workshop, outdoor seating and fire pits, live music, private cozy winter igloos, free crafts for kids, holiday celebrations, special events and more! 

Hodinöhsö:ni’ Art Show Exhibit

December 2 | Ganondagan State Historic Site

On Saturday, December 2nd, experience Haudenosaunee culture while shopping for that one-of-a-kind holiday gift.

It's a Wonderful Life in the South Wedge 2023

December 2 | South Wedge Neighborhood

“It’s a Wonderful Life in the South Wedge 2023”, is a holiday event produced by the Business Association of the South Wedge Area that will be held on Saturday, December 2nd from 11am – 4:00pm in multiple locations throughout the South Wedge. Star Alley will be decorated in a classic Christmas theme with pine boughs and decorations. There will be activities and special visitors for children. You'll be entertained as you shop our many vendors while listening to holiday songs from carolers and other live music from the area. Rochester’s favorite food trucks will be on hand in addition to the South Wedge’s finest eateries, many featuring holiday food and drink specials. Local businesses will provide the backdrop with special sales during the event.

Liberty Pole Lighting & Parade

December 2 | Roc Holiday Village

The annual Liberty Pole Lighting will include a festive Parade with Santa, elves, and other costumed characters to Roc Holiday Village held in conjunction with the City of Rochester and Downtown Definitely. Community members will have an opportunity to participate in the popular family parade.

Skate with Santa

December 2 | DICK's House of Sport Rochester

Join DICK’S House of Sport and jolly ole’ St. Nick himself - Santa Claus for our 2nd annual Skate with Santa holiday activity! During this popular ice skating event, families will have an opportunity to hit the ice to holiday music and festive holiday decor. Santa Claus will be on the ice, providing all children an opportunity to give him their holiday wish list, and take photos with him (Santa loves selfies!)​

Hanukkah Celebration

December 3 | Roc Holiday Village

Attend this event for storytelling and crafts throughout the day, presented by the Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester.

Pittsford Candlelight Night

December 5 | Pittsford, NY

Starting at 5:00PM, An annual holiday celebration by the Pittsford Chamber of Commerce.

Family Fun Day: Stars with Santa

December 9, 16 | RMSC Strasenburgh Planetarium

Join the RMSC Strasenburgh Planetarium for Stars with Santa to celebrate the holiday season with the whole family!

Kwanzaa Celebration

December 10 | Roc Holiday Village

Attend this event for live music and storytelling in celebration of Kwanzaa!

Holly Trolley Rides

December 10, 17 | New York Museum of Transportation

Visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus in our holiday decorated museum, ride the trolley, see the model railroad in action, and enjoy complimentary hot chocolate and cookies!


December 14 | Dryden Theatre at the George Eastman Museum

Charles Dickens’s immortal classic comes to life in this musical adaptation with songs and music by Leslie Bricusse, who had recently done the same for the enormously popular Doctor Dolittle (1967). Albert Finney stars as the eponymous Ebenezer Scrooge, a cruel employer and misanthrope who would rather not have to deal with the Christmas holiday at all and begrudges his sole employee the one day off. His fortunes change, however, when his cold heart and miserly ways are melted by the interference of four ghosts on Christmas Eve.

Three Kings’ Day Celebration

December 15 | Roc Holiday Village

Enjoy live music and crafts in celebration of Three Kings' Day, presented by Rochester's Puerto Rican Festival.

Pancake Breakfast with St. Nick

December 16-17 | Genesee Country Village & Museum

Celebrate the holiday season alongside family and friends with a tasty pancake breakfast in the Museum’s holiday-decorated Meeting Center.

Christmas Celebration

December 17 | Roc Holiday Village

Enjoy making crafts, singing Christmas carols and more to celebrate Christmas at Roc Holiday Village.

Holiday Open House

December 17 | Genesee Country Village & Museum

Enjoy the delights of the festively decorated historic village during the Yuletide Open House!

Kwanzaa Celebration at MAG

December 28 | Memorial Art Gallery

Enjoy make-it, take-it art, drumming and dancing, live music, and more. This is a free event, and registration is not required.


Strasenburg Planetarium Holiday Laser Show at Rochester Museum & Science Center

November 11 Through January 1 | RMSC Museum & Science Center

The planetarium’s family holiday spectacular features your favorite holiday songs played back-to-back choreographed with dancing laser light among the stars of the planetarium sky. 

Rochester Christmas Lights Tours

Through December 30 | Various Locations

Cruise around and see the Christmas lights with RocTours— providing chauffeured tours of holiday light displays in Rochester and surrounding suburbs in a luxury Cadillac Escalade.

Holiday Lights Tour 2023

December 9 Through January 1 | Various Locations

Bivona Child Advocacy Center has again partnered with some of the brightest and most festively decorated homes in the area to bring you a fun, family-centered event. Holiday Lights Tour presented by Montage Wealth Management is a great way to celebrate the holiday magic while supporting children in our community.



The Thanksgiving Sale

November 10-27 | Corning Museum of Glass

Visit The Shops for the best holiday deals in town! You’ll find great discounts on holiday items and gifts, from glittering ornaments and jewelry to home decorations and handmade glass items from around the world.

The Lucky Flea

November 12, 19, 26 | Radio Social

100+ of your favorite local vendors offering top notch sustainable and secondhand goods every Sunday 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.

RMSC: Holiday Bazaar

November 17-19 | RMSC Museum & Science Center

Come celebrate the Annual Holiday Bazaar Arts & Crafts Sale from November 17-19, 2023. The Holiday Bazaar is a juried show with five floors of displays across the RMSC campus. A spectacular variety of exhibitors will showcase creative, unique, hand-made items including: ceramics, fiber arts, glass, jewelry, mixed media, paintings, photography, prints, sculpture, woodwork, and more.

Holiday Market & Preparing for Winter

November 18-19 | Genesee Country Village & Museum

Prepare for winter yourself by shopping at the Holiday Market and see how Western New Yorkers prepared for winter in the 19th century. The perfect family activity to kick off the holiday season!

Record Store Day Black Friday

November 25 | Record Archive

You've filled yourself to the brim with stuffing and gravy, now it's time to fill up on music as well! Nov. 24th is Black Friday, and Record Archive is here to keep you busy with the family after all the doorbusters. They'll be opening an hour early at 9am and have tons of exclusive Record Store Day Black Friday vinyl releases as well as their famous dollar records.

Holidays at the Market

November 26, December 3, December 10, December 14 | City of Rochester Public Market  

A Rochester holiday tradition for more than 26 years, Holidays at the Market features dozens of holiday-focused vendors (trees, decorations, holiday foods and crafts, gifts, and more), visits with Santa, carriage rides, cookie decorating and more! 

Holiday Plant Sale

December 2 | RMSC Museum & Science Center

Decorate your home for the holidays while supporting your favorite Science Center, Planetarium and Nature Center! 

Merrymaking Makers Market

December 17 | New York Kitchen

Join New York Kitchen in Canandaigua on Sunday, December 17th, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for a family-friendly, super fun, holiday market! There will be 20+ artisans available with everything from jewelry to home-décor to stationary, candles, candy and more.



A Christmas Carol

November 28-December 30 | Geva Theatre

The sparkling classic returns, full of spectacular magic, heartwarming music, and holiday tradition. On Christmas Eve, Scrooge is visited by a series of ghosts who remind him who he was and what he might yet become. He learns the true meaning of the season and that it’s never too late to make a new start. The famous tale of redemption for the most despised man in London will awaken your heart and rekindle your spirit in this critically acclaimed adaptation.

Trans Siberian Orchestra: The Ghost of Christmas Eve

November 30 | Blue Cross Arena

Trans-Siberian Orchestra will perform at Blue Cross Arena on Thursday, November 30 at 7 p.m. This year's tour promises a new and larger presentation of the beloved holiday tradition, "The Ghosts of Christmas Eve," which has captured the hearts of multiple generations. 

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical

December 1-2 | Rochester Broadway Theatre League

Your favorite holiday special comes to you live on stage! The beloved TV classic RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER soars off the screen and onto the stage this holiday season. Come see all of your favorite characters from the special including Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius and, of course, Rudolph, as they come to life in RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER: THE MUSICAL.

Yuletide in the Country Tours and Dinners

December 2-3, 8-9, 10, 15-16 | Genesee Country Village & Museum

As you explore the wintry village bedecked in holiday splendor you’ll be invited into vignettes that illuminate the link between today’s cherished holiday traditions and the cultural customs of generations that came before. Yuletide tours run from 5 – 8:30 p.m. on Fridays, from 2 – 8 p.m. on Saturdays, and from 2 – 7 p.m. on Sundays. And don’t forget, you can pair your festive experience with a delicious dinner!

Irving Berlin’s White Christmas

December 7-23 | OFC Creations

Dance your way through the holidays with Irving Berlin’s classic songs in this Christmas hit! A timeless tale of joy and goodwill, White Christmas is filled with nostalgic songs, glorious dancing, and lots of snow!

Nutcracker! Magical Christmas Ballet

December 8 | Rochester Broadway Theatre League

The beloved family tradition is back: NUTCRACKER! Magical Christmas Ballet! Gather your loved ones for the warm-glow-nostalgia of America’s favorite Christmas celebration. Experience the extraordinary international cast and Ukrainian Principal Artists performing at the peak of classical European Ballet. Be transported by the magic of jaw-dropping acrobatics, larger-than-life puppets, and stunning hand-crafted sets and costumes.

The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley

December 8-30 | Blackfriars Theatre

This Christmas, cozy up with your favorite Pride and Prejudice characters at Pemberley, the grand estate of newlyweds, Mr. and Mrs. Darcy. Middle daughter Mary Bennet, bookish and often overshadowed by her sisters, blossoms when a curious visitor proves himself an intellectual match, kindred spirit and possibly more. Told with modern wit and period style, this effervescent, comedic sequel to one of the most beloved literary romances of all time will enchant Austen fans and newcomers alike.

Don’t Be A Grinch! Holiday Extravaganza

December 17 | OFC's The Old Farm Cafe

Don't be a mean one, let's get in the holiday spirit! Our hearts are growing three sizes in anticipation of welcoming Mr. Grinch and his friends to the OFC Creations Theatre Center! 



Sparkle Party

December 6 | Living Roots Wine & Co.

While many view it as a celebratory drink, the Living Roots team are fans of enjoying sparkling wine any day of the week. In this class, you'll explore how bubbly is made, how to properly open and serve it, best food pairings, and more - all while tasting through different styles of sparkling wine produced by Living Roots.

More Than A Margarita: Holiday Themed Tequila Cocktails And Tastings

December 16 | Salena’s Mexican Restaurant

Tequila is a unique and versatile spirit, whose place belongs in a number of cocktails, not just a Margarita. We will explore the process of making tequila and discover how it fits in the cocktail landscape. Class will include samples and the opportunity to create your own cocktail!

Sparkling Holiday Cocktails and Chemistry

December 17 | New York Kitchen

Enjoy a trio of delicious holiday cocktails while learning about all the wonderful science that is involved in making the season such a special time of the year. All the cocktails will feature New York sparkling wine, and you will leave with the recipes to use at your own holiday parties!