Kids’ Almanac (12/15-22)


Photo of chocolate Hanukkah gelt by John Lodder


“The journey is my home.”
– Muriel Rukeyser, writer



Holiday “Sparkle!” at Boscobel

How might you describe this time of year? Festive? Carb-rich? Glittery? Well, if you like shimmer and shine, you’ll like “Sparkle!” taking place at Boscobel this Friday and Saturday, December 16 and 17 from 5 to 9 p.m. Stroll the grounds with hot chocolate, meet Santa, enjoy hands-on activities, view the light displays and holiday decorations and listen to live music. And no worries about the sold-out Twilight Tour of the house itself: Take in a Daytime Holiday Tour, instead – available daily through December 31, except Tuesdays and Christmas on December 25. Tickets for Sparkle! cost $17 for adults, $12 for children ages 3 to 11 years, are free for children under 3 years and cost $53 for a family of two children and two adults; there are discounts for groups and members. Daytime Holiday Tour tickets cost $17 for adults, $14 for seniors ages 62 and over, $8 for children ages 6 to 14 years; and there is a $34 Web special for two adults, which includes one free child ticket.

Boscobel is located at 1601 Route 9D in Garrison. For tickets or more information, call (845) 265-3638 or visit



Nativity display in Hyde Park

What does a traditional crèche look like to you? It’s pretty basic, right? Starts with baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph, and goes from there, with Wise Ones, shepherds, animals, an angel and more. You and your children will delight in the fascinating differences, and enchanting similarities, at the over 200 international exhibits in the Nativity Scenes Display at Mariapolis Luminosa, daily through December 30. On Saturday, December 17 from 2 to 4 p.m., children are invited to a special activity of painting a ceramic baby Jesus, and all ages will enjoy the live barbershop music of the Poughkeepsie Newyorkers.


The Nativity Scenes Display is open Monday through Friday from 2 to 5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is free, with a suggested donation of $5. Mariapolis Luminosa is located at 200 Cardinal Road in Hyde Park. For more information, call (845) 229-0230 or visit or


Messiah Sing in Hudson

Harness your inner Hallelujah and round up your flesh for a Messiah Sing this Saturday, December 17 at 4 p.m. at Christ Church Episcopal. This gathering to perform George Friedrich Handel’s Messiah includes a string ensemble, vocal soloists and scores for everyone to sing and follow along. The cost is a $15 suggested donation for adults, and free for students age 18 and under.

Christ Church Episcopal is located at 431 Union Street in Hudson. For more information, call (518) 822-1438 or visit


Hanukkah Carnival at Kingston’s Temple Emanuel

This time of year, do you find yourself humming, “Don’t let the light go out! / Let it shine through our hope and our tears”? Channel that spirit at the Hanukkah Carnival this Saturday, December 17 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at Temple Emanuel. Hear live music, make a puppet, candle or salt scrub, play games, eat delicious latkes and more! Admission costs $5 for adults, $3 for kids.

Temple Emanuel is located at 243 Albany Avenue in Kingston. For more information, call (845) 338-4271 or visit


Puppet People perform A Christmas Carol at Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck

Have your tots or teens seen Scrooge or Tiny Tim yet this season? How about a child-friendly version of the Dickens classic, told with puppets and marionettes? This Saturday, December 17 at 11 a.m., the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck presents A Christmas Carol by the Puppet People. And wouldn’t a dose of family, community and giving feel good right about now? Tickets for A Christmas Carol cost $7 for children and $9 for adults and seniors.

The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck is located at 661 Route 308 in Rhinebeck. For tickets or more information, call (845) 876-3080 or visit To learn more about the performers, visit


Ellenville High School hosts Vanaver Caravan’s Into the Light

Which local winter event features so many multiple holidays? I’m talking Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Santa Lucia, the Winter Solstice and Diwali. That’s right: It’s Into the Light Holiday Pageant time! On Saturday, December 17 at 2 p.m. at the Ellenville High School Auditorium, families will watch swirling, twirling dancers, live music and life-sized puppets, which means entertainment for all ages, and affordable! Admission is by suggested donation of $5 per person.

Ellenville High School is located at 28 Maple Avenue in Ellenville. For more information, call (845) 256-9300 or visit


Tuba Christmas at SUNY-Ulster

This time of year, we hear from the fife and the drum…but one instrument gets short shrift, amiright? Tubas! Well, not anymore: SUNY-Ulster presents Tuba Christmas this Saturday, December 17. Registration begins at 12 noon, rehearsal starts at 1 p.m. and the performance takes place at 3 p.m. in Clinton Hall. All ages of tuba and euphonium players are invited to participate, or just come to this free concert and listen.

SUNY-Ulster is located at 491 Cottekill Road in Stone Ridge. For more information, call (845) 687-5000 or visit


Create Your Own Ornament at Gardiner’s Sunflower Art Studios

How well do your holiday ornaments reflect the true you? Do you ever say, “I just gotta be me”? Design your own decor at the “Create Your Own Ornament” workshop at the Sunflower Art Studios this Saturday, December 17 from 12 noon to 3 p.m. Each piece starts at $4 and includes all supplies and instruction; plus, enjoy some free hot cider!

The Sunflower Art Studios are located at 120 Main Street in Gardiner. For more information or to register, call (845) 419-5219 or visit or



Candlelight tours of Mount Gulian in Beacon

It’s candlelight tour time, and this weekend, Mount Gulian is in the mix! Head over to this quaint historic house on the banks of the Hudson this Sunday, December 18 between 4 and 7 p.m. Take in the sights and aromas of holiday décor and free refreshments, and enjoy storytelling for the kids at 5 p.m. Admission for the Sunday holiday tour costs $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and $6 for children. Weekday candlelight tours take place Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, December 20 to 22 between 1 and 5 p.m. for $2 less per ticket. And remember to make your reservations now for the Children’s Holiday Tea on Thursday, December 29 from 12 noon to 2 p.m. (let them know if you need gluten-free accommodations).

Mount Gulian is located at 145 Sterling Street in Beacon. For reservations or more information, call (845) 831-8172 or visit


Community Hanukkah Party at Beacon Hebrew Alliance

Curious about Hanukkah customs? Psyched to spin a dreidl? Come to the Beacon Hebrew Alliance’s Community Hanukkah Party this Sunday, December 18 from 12 noon to 2 p.m. All are welcome, especially children, to sing, watch skits, play dreidl, do arts and crafts and cheer on favorite entries in the latke-tasting contest. Each child will make a chanukiyah to bring home to light over the holiday.

The Beacon Hebrew Alliance is located at 331 Verplanck Avenue in Beacon. For more information, call (845) 831-2012, extension 3, or visit



Mindful Play Shop at Kingston’s Center for Creative Education

Could your crew use a break from apps, Likes and selfies? Do you need some centering amidst December’s hustle and bustle? Here’s some help! All ages, from homeschooled children through teens to adults, are invited to “A Mindful Play Shop: For Every Age, for Everyone” this Monday, December 19 from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Center for Creative Education. Participants won’t just learn about mindfulness; this play shop is an opportunity to make friends with our minds, discover basic confidence and playfulness and manage our inside and outside worlds. The program costs $10 per person.

The Center for Creative Education is located at 15 Railroad Avenue in Kingston.

For more information or to register, call (845) 338-7664, e-mail or visit



Rosendale Theatre stages Dark Night/New Light

What are you looking for this season? Cookies? Hatchimals? Light? Well, I can help with that last one. This Wednesday, December 21 at 7 p.m., Youth Arts at the Rosendale Theatre presents Dark Night/New Light, an original Solstice play with music. Directed by Carrie Wykoff, Debbie Lan and Bryan “Drew” Andrews, the cast of 7-to-13-year-olds features Sufi tales about light. Wykoff explains, “We are eagerly at work creating a performance that emulates community and the light, in honor of the Winter Solstice. The audience will be invited not just to sit back, relax and enjoy the show, but also to lean forward, engage and start changing the world for the better through art, music and theater.” Tickets cost $10 for adults, $5 for children.

The Rosendale Theatre is located at 408 Main Street in Rosendale. For more information, call (845) 658-8989 or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno is eating so much panna cotta right now, wondering how she has missed this for so many years. She can be reached at