This year, I think we all need some extra joy and holiday spirit. And with the winter holidays fast approaching, you may think there won’t be much to do when it comes to holiday and Christmas events in Philadelphia. (Or Hanukkah and Kwanzaa.) But you’d be wrong! Many holiday traditions will continue in 2020, albeit with some changes.
Whether you prefer to enjoy these Philadelphia holiday events virtually or want to celebrate carefully following safety protocols, there are lots of options to choose from. The same is true for New Year’s Eve events, too.
I’ve pulled together more than 50 of the best, most unique, and fun holiday and Christmas events in Philadelphia and across the region plus New Year’s Eve events, too!
With hipster havens in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh bookending Pennsylvania, you probably don’t think of Harrisburg as the first spot for a cool, urban location to spend a day. But you should. Don’t underestimate Harrisburg. The capital city’s Midtown neighborhood will make you rethink what you think you already know. The neighborhood is rich with a farmer’s market with an internal food court, art galleries, street art and an independent bookshop that puts the rest to shame. And all of those things are set in and around a backdrop of historic buildings with the kind of architecture they just don’t make anymore. Midtown Harrisburg is laidback and easy going in a way that “the big city” just isn’t.
To say that a Pennsylvania State Capitol tour in Harrisburg is a pleasant surprise is a massive understatement. For a state that was founded on Quaker values eschewing materialism, there sure is a whole lot of 23K gold, Italian marble, and two dozen stained glass windows created by a student of Tiffany. And all of this in that awkward middleground between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, surrounded by farms, many from Amish families, and industry. What could pass in part as, perhaps, the mansion of a turn of the century American magnate or an elaborate cathedral, or even just a museum, is actually the capitol building. And with free tours of the capitol building, you’d be silly not to visit and take it all in. Just don’t blame me if you get a sore neck from gazing upwards at the ceiling and walls.