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LifestyleHolidaysWinter Holidays

Best of Long Island holiday season events 

A reinactment of the story, "The Polar Express,"

A reinactment of the story, "The Polar Express," a tale of a little boy who travels to the North Pole aboard a magical steam engine, enter the North Fork Trolley Company's, Polar Express Trolley Ride. Photo Credit: Randee Daddona

As the holidays approach, Long Island’s many museums, historic sites and communities will host parades, festivals, tree lightings and more. Here are some places to catch the merriment.

PATCHOGUE VILLAGE CHRISTMAS HOLIDAY BOAT PARADE

Nov. 18, 6 p.m. Santa proves he’s seaworthy, as well as sleigh-worthy, when he arrives at the end of a flotilla of more than two dozen boats draped in holiday lights at the Patchogue River waterfront.

WHERE Best views are from Sandspit Park/Davis Park Ferry Terminal, Brightwood Street; and Fire Island National Seashore, Watch Hill Ferry Terminal, West Avenue

INFO 631-804-0595, Patchogue.com, free

POLAR EXPRESS / NORTH FORK TROLLEY RIDE

Weekends and select weekdays from Nov. 23 to Dec. 23. Families can take a trolley ride to the “North Pole,” inspired by the classic children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg (and a 2004 movie starring Tom Hanks). For children 2 and older.

WHERE 253 Edwards Ave., Calverton

INFO 631-369-3031, $55 a person, tickets available at northforktrolley.com

ART LEAGUE OF LONG ISLAND HOLIDAY FINE ART & CRAFT FAIR

Dec. 1-2, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The Art League of Long Island hosts its 55th annual juried art and craft fair, featuring work from 70 exhibitors, perfect for gift shopping. The event will also have live art demos, a hands-on art activity, live music and a food truck.

WHERE 107 E. Deer Park Road, Dix Hills

INFO 631-462-5400, http://artleagueli.net, free

VANDERBILT MANSION’S FESTIVE HOLIDAY DINNERS

Dec. 1, seatings at 6 and 8 p.m. Enjoy an elegant meal in the Gold Coast mansion, which will be decked out in holiday finery. Includes a guided tour of the Vanderbilt Museum.

WHERE 180 Little Neck Rd., Centerport

INFO 631-854-5579, vanderbiltmuseum.org, $135 a person, $125 for members, reservations required.

22ND ANNUAL CHARLES DICKENS FESTIVAL

Dec. 1-2. Port Jefferson’s annual salute to the prolific English author includes trolley and carriage rides, costumed characters from “A Christmas Carol,” Victorian entertainment, magic shows and a giant puppet parade.

INFO 631-473-4724, 631-473-1414, portjeff.com; most events are free

HOLIDAY TALES AT THE HEARTH

Dec. 2, 1 p.m. Hempstead House will host a celebration of holiday traditions from around the world, with a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, plus stories told by special guest readers.

WHERE Sands Point Preserve, 127 Middle Neck Rd., Sands Point

INFO sandspointpreserveconservancy.org, 516-571-7901, $10 per car for members, $20 per car for nonmembers

RIVERHEAD’S BONFIRE AND HOLIDAY CELEBRATION

Dec. 8, 3 p.m. Santa rides to the Peconic riverfront bonfire in a horse-drawn carriage. Enjoy hot cocoa, candy canes and holiday music.

WHERE Behind the East End Arts Building, 133 E. Main St., Riverhead

INFO 631-591-0722, riverheadbid.com, free

OLD BETHPAGE, CANDLELIGHT EVENINGS

Dec. 21-23, 27-29, 5-9:30 p.m., last ticket sale at 8 p.m. 19th century entertainment in historic buildings lit only by candlelight, as they would be on holiday evenings during the 1800s, holiday songs, period storytelling, hot apple cider and fiddle music.

WHERE Old Bethpage Village Restoration, Round Swamp Road

INFO 516-572-8401, obvrnassau.com

HOLIDAY LIGHTING HIGHLIGHTS

Bundle up and enjoy these special outdoor lightings.

LIGHTING THE MONTAUK POINT LIGHTHOUSE, Nov. 24, 4 p.m. The Montauk Historical Society adorns the lighthouse for the holidays. Includes holiday music, caroling and an appearance by Santa.

NORTHPORT’S “A CHRISTMAS STORY” LEG LAMP LIGHTING CEREMONY, Nov. 24, 6 p.m. The town makes a special event out of a famous scene from everyone’s favorite Christmas movie. Carl’s Candies, villageofnorthport.com, free.

OLD WESTBURY GARDENS

Dec. 1, 6:30-9 p.m. The event will feature a performance by members of the Bethel Concert Choir, a visit by Santa Claus and light refreshments. 71 Old Westbury Rd., Old Westbury, oldwestburygardens.org, 516-333-0048, $15, $13 for members, $8 for children 7-17, free for children 6 and younger and for member children. Advance registration is required.

BELMONT LAKE STATE PARK,

Dec. 1, 4:15 p.m. Ice sculptures, roving carolers, post-tree lighting fireworks. 625 Belmont Ave., West Babylon, 631-667-5055, nysparks.com, free.

PLANTING FIELDS, Dec. 7, 6 p.m. Highlights of the arboretum’s annual ceremony are the holiday decorations inside Coe Hall and the poinsettia display in the main greenhouse. Planting Fields Arboretum State Historic Park, Oyster Bay, 516-922-9200, plantingfields.org.

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