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Tinseltown ||  Spring Mountain ||  Union Street Doylestown ||  Craftsman Row Saloon ||  Blitzen the Bar  || Philly Holiday Experience   ||  Little GF Chefs   ||  Deana’s Cookie Couture   ||  Franklin Frost at the Franklin Institute   ||  Jane’s Tea House   ||   Christmas on Bubbly Goat Farm  ||  Flight on Ice   ||  Colebrookdale Railroad

Welcome to the 2021 edition of Kathy’s Holiday Activities

I love everything the Holiday season has to offer. I find so much happiness in all of it: from train rides with Santa and baking cookies at home, to holiday-themed cocktails inside bars that look like Christmas threw up! I put out this list every year so you can share in the joy this brings me and my family. Please follow our holiday journey on social media: @kathyromano11 and take me with you and your family by tagging me in your holiday activities. Use the hashtags #kathysholidayactivities & #kathysactivities



 

  • 1) Won't You Take Me To Tinseltown?

    Tinseltown is a brand-new, dazzling outdoor holiday light experience with breathtaking light sculptures and displays made up of more than 1.2 million light bulbs. It’s located at the Fairgrounds at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks which provides lots of room to stroll around at your leisure.  The Holiday spectacular includes a winter wonderland of lights, holiday market, photos with Santa, storytime with Mrs. Claus, a synthetic ice skating rink, and festive food and drinks like the Christmapolitan. I’ll take 2, please! This is a perfect family outing.  If you’re going with a large group there are discounted tickets for groups of 10 or more. Gritty will be there on Thursdays from 5pm-7:30pm and you can bring your pets on Waggin’ Wednesdays. Santa will take pictures with the kids and your animals, just keep in mind that skating and photos with Santa & Gritty are an additional cost. Be sure to check for you kids names on Santa’s Naughty & Nice list as you enter his workshop! [Tour Tinseltown with Kathy Romano]

    Use code KATHY20 for discounted tickets

  • 2) Skiing, Snowboarding, and Now Ice Skating All In One Place!

    Brand new at Spring Mountain for the 2021/22 winter season is a full-size outdoor ice rink.  We are regulars at the Schwenksville mountain, so we are really excited about the new rink.  Beginning December 3rd, they will be offering skating lessons, public skating, hockey games/practices and private rentals of the rink.  There will be a food and beer truck at the rink area and at the base of the mountain.  In order to make up for the parking being taken away by the new rink, the owners have added a new parking lot on the side of the mountain that was not being used. Spring Mountain’s First Annual Skating Spectacular & Tree Lighting will take place on December 11th.  The event begins at 3pm with a local competitive skaters showcase, then skating with Santa at 4:30pm and lighting the holiday tree at 5:30pm. [be one of the first to skate the new rink]

    Pro tip: Spring Mountain also offers an excellent after school ski and snowboard program for kids and adults who want to learn the sport.

  • 3) BYOB Holiday Crafting

    Union Street Doylestown has holiday workshops perfect for a friends day or night out.  Coffee and Cards is every Saturday and, for $20, you’ll craft a variety of holiday cards and gift tags. Bring your champagne and OJ because it’s BYOB. (If it were up to me, I’d rename the workshop to Champagne and Cards!)  Thursdays are Ladies Night Out, where you make 2 gifts including a scented soy candle and a peppermint or lavender exfoliating scrub.  Plus, you personalize the gift bag and gift tags for the candle and scrub.  You’ll craft among festive decorations and holiday music playing in the studio, putting you in the spirit! [get crafting!]

  • 4) Holiday Pop-Up Bars

    With over 5000 feet of garland, thousands of lights, colorful ornaments, bows, stockings, Santas and of course an Elf on the Shelf hidden among the festive décor, Craftsman Row Saloon has me jumping up and down like a little kid.  All of the decorations are handmade by the Philadelphia restaurant owners and their family.  At the restaurant, located on Jewelers’ Row, you can enjoy delicious food, amazing holiday cocktails and over the top holiday milkshakes.  The Ugly Sweater Milkshake includes gingerbread cookies, a Christmas tree peep, and rock candy. Getting’ Chippy Milkshake features full size cookies on the rim of the mason jar it’s served in.  Ice Ice Baby Milkshake is made with birthday cake ice cream and has edible snowballs and snowflakes.  This is a great restaurant for families.  Just know ahead of time, once your kids see a milkshake go by, you’re not walking out of there without getting them one! [you have see these decorations]

    Blitzen the Bar is a vintage holiday-themed pop-up bar in Wilmington, Delaware. Get a babysitter, this one is for adults!  The designer and creative director behind the concept, Dallas Shaw, says she wanted there to be a story behind the décor. When you visit the bar, you’re invited into Blitzen’s den where you’ll see pictures of Blitzen’s family, portraits of him, scandalous postcards back and forth to Mrs. Claus, deer hunting books and more of Blitzen’s interests.  The geniuses behind the bar, Mike & Keith, will quickly serve up a Resting Blitz Face (pomegranate spritzer), a Big Elf Energy (tequila drink) and many more festive cocktails. If you want the perfect holiday instagramable photo you must visit Blitzen the Bar! The popularity of Dallas’ vision is growing and she’s already working on next year’s holiday themed pop-up bars in Scranton and Bermuda.  Secret tip: keep an eye out for details about a Christmas in July pop-up bar in Wilmington! [find out Blitzen’s little secret]

  • 5) Holiday Parade & City Hall Festivities

    New this holiday season is the Visit Philadelphia Holiday Parade, which will feature floats representing Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Chinese New Year, and Christmas, with performances by local marching bands, cold air balloons of your favorite holiday characters, and much more.  The parade will begin on 2nd & Market St at 5pm on December 4th and conclude at City Hall.  If you’re planning on heading to the parade, here’s a reminder of what else you can do while you’re at Dilworth Park:

    • We love skating on the Rothman Ice Rink while looking up at the gorgeous City Hall building.
    • Deck the Hall Light Show happens on the west façade of City Hall nightly.
    • Next to the rink is the Rothman Cabin, reminiscent of a rustic ski chalet, that serves food and drinks.
    • Every Wednesday is Cocktails and Cold Ones happy hour from 5-7pm. Thursdays are College Night where students skate for $2 with a valid student ID.
    • Stroll through or take a break in the Winter Garden and check out the over 40 local vendors in the Holiday Market.
    • Across the street in Love Park is the Christmas Village, Philadelphia’s authentic open air German Christmas market. Enjoy the holiday sights and sounds, festive decorations, delicious European food and sweets, hot chocolate, live music, carousel, Ferris wheel, a kids train and over 100 vendors. Look out for special wine and spirits tasting events. [lots more info about the Philly Holiday Experience]
  • 6) Sprinkles or Jimmies?

    Little GF Chefs offers amazing allergy-friendly baking kits.  I’ve become much more aware of the food allergies kids and adults suffer and how difficult it can be to feel normal if you have a food allergy.  Little GF Chefs gives those who suffer the opportunity to take part in the traditional baking and decorating at home with zero worries.  The baking kits are free of most major food allergies: gluten, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, sesame and artificial dyes.  This season’s baking options include Christmas cookie, gingerbread cookie, and snowman cupcake kits and while supplies last, the very popular gingerbread house kit.  The online store has baking kits all year long with the unicorn donuts, pretzel bites, breadsticks and confetti cake pops kits being some of the most popular. [see more gluten free treats]

    For those who don’t have food allergies and can enjoy a good ol’ gluten, dairy, peanut-filled cookie decorating experience, Deana’s Cookie Couture offers at-home kits as well.  The local baker bakes the cookies, then ships them out for you to decorate. The kits include all of the decorating supplies you will need to make your festive cookies.  She is offering a great Elf cookie (that maybe your elf could bring one night), a paint-your-own gingerbread house, and a cookie advent calendar. This year’s Paint Your Own Cookies kit includes snow globe, stocking, snowman and Santa cookies.  It’s a fun activity for all ages to do at home whenever times allows this holiday season.  [check out the custom Preston & Steve Show cookies]

  • 7) I Choo Choo Choose You

    Franklin Frost at the Franklin Institute is a new seasonal experience with a focus on trains.  Circling 300 feet of railway throughout the Institute, hand-painted model trains travel on elevated tracks through a bustling city, a charming snow-covered valley, and a glowing aurora night.  The centerpiece of Franklin Frost is the 25-foot-tall sparkling Christmas tree in the Atrium of the Institute designed to reflect the mysterious and magnificent night sky. Admission to Franklin Frost is free with your ticket to the Franklin Institute. [more photos for those intrigued by inventions and see the potential in trains]

  • 8) What Type of Tea Does Ted Lasso Enjoy? A ParTea

    Jane’s Tea House in Haddon Heights, NJ is reinventing Tea Time with a little added holiday cheer.  Each of their “par-teas” have a different themed menu that includes an unlimited pot of hot or iced tea (30+ flavors to choose from), 1 scone with spreads, 4 tea sandwiches, tea cookie and 4 desserts.  Plus, the activity is in the name of that week’s event:  Tea with Santa, Ugly Sweater Tea Party, Mom N’ Me Christmas ParTea, Pajama Paint ParTea and the Christmas Cookie Scavenger Hunt. [full list of parties!]

  • 9) Christmas on Bubbly Goat Farm

    Bubbly Goat Farm celebrates this wonderful time of the year and opens up their small family farm in Stockton, NJ with an event called “Christmas with the Goats”.  The red barns are decorated with garland, lights and other holiday decorations. You will also hear Christmas music playing while the happy little goats bounce and jump around.  They offer 30-minute private group sessions for you to sit and snuggle with their friendly herd of goats.  Hot Cocoa is served alongside tasty treats.  Shop the Goat Gift Barn packed with items including goat milk soaps, lotions, skincare, candles and laundry soap.  All of the products are handcrafted on the farm and are made with the fresh, raw goat milk from their herd of dairy goats. [the line for goat snuggles begins here]

  • 10) Hey Delco.... Toe Pick!

    There is a brand-new outdoor skating rink in Delco! Flight on Ice at Veterans Memorial Rink in Edgmont, PA is a new outdoor ice rink and pop-up winter village. You can expect fun for the whole family including ice skating sessions, lounge area, heated tent, and great food and beverages.  Tickets and family packages are already on sale.

    There is also a Flight on Ice location in Egg Harbor, NJ.  New this year at Vinter Wonderland at Renault Winery is a bigger outdoor ice-skating rink, in addition to the horse-drawn carriage rides, festive drinks, live entertainment, fire pits, local vendors and a festival of trees. [let’s go skating!]

  • BONUS ACTIVITY: Colebrookdale Railroad

    This was on last year’s list, but it was so amazing it’s making back on the list again this year!  If you haven’t yet hopped aboard one of Colebrookdale’s Holiday Excursions, now is the time.  Santa’s Polar Bear Express is a magical adventure into Christmas past. The Victorian charm of the heated coaches make for a very comfortable train ride.  On the train make sure you indulge in the most delicious hot chocolate!  Also offered to riders are cookies and other treats, favorite carols, a gift for every child and an opportunity for the kids to give their Christmas letter to Santa.  The railroad also offers a “’Twas The Night Before Christmas” train ride and a Snowflake Special ride through the Secret Valley.  Last year they added a decorated open-air car and new this year is a Ghost of Christmas past car. [throwback to Kathy’s favorite train activity]