Coastal Christmas

Dash through December with our guide to all things holiday


There’s something extraordinary about December in South County. The coastline takes on a different personality and you’re more likely to see birders over ‘boarders – although with wet suits, that’s still a thing. It’s time to bundle up and enjoy wandering through shops festooned and stocked with holiday offerings. Restaurants serve up spiced and savory treats, and hot cocoa is back on the menu. There are tree and menorah lightings, classic performances, art markets and craft shows. And while Main Streets in East Greenwich, Wakefield, Westerly, Wickford Village, and more offer a special charm all year round, they become especially twinkly in anticipation of the holidays. Whether you describe yourself as Buddy the Elf, the Grinch, or the Mensch on the Bench, we’ve assembled a stocking-full of ways for you to eat, drink, and get your merry on all month long.

December 1: Get something for everyone on your nice list during the one-day pop-up shopping event at The Grange in East Greenwich.

December 1: It’s pinkies up in the decorated parlor during Holiday House Tea at Clouds Hill Victorian House Museum.

December 4: Westerly turns into a wonderland with sidewalks lined with lights, hayrides with Santa, strolling carolers, hot chocolate and cookies, and more. 

December 4-29: Special holiday show “Next Stop: Northern Lights” kicks off during Westerly’s Downtown Holiday stroll and continues through the month. 

December 5-8: Don’t miss the Wickford Festival of Lights! This South County tradition wows visitors with Santa’s grand arrival via kayak, caroling and concerts – and elf parade! 

December 6: Ring in the holiday season with carolers, Santa on a fire truck, shopping, storytelling, and special services from local organizations like Frosty Drew during Cross Mills’ Holiday Ramble

December 6: Eat, drink, and be merry during Coventry’s kick-off to the holiday season featuring pics with Santa, festival of trees, trackless train rides, and more. 

December 7: Enjoy mulled cider, homemade baked goods, and seasonal scents at Smith’s Castle in North Kingstown. 

December 7: Have you ever wondered about the sweet science behind Sweenor’s? Watch how they roll and twist handmade candy canes during an old-fashioned showcase in Wakefield. 

December 7: Peruse fine art vendors, raffle baskets, White Elephant room, cafe, and holiday greens for sale at Kingston's Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd

December 7: The Nikommo Winter Moon Celebration features a Native American market and storytelling in this traditional celebration of the season of giving.

December 7: A stroll, holiday parade, tree lighting, and South County Trolley “Polar Express” is just part of Wakefield’s Winter Wonderland. 

December 7: FIXX fans can relish in MTV-era sound during a holiday concert at Greenwich Odeum

December 7-8: Meet and greet the artists at Shady Lea Mill’s Annual Open Studios, an art-making space for potters, sculptors, painters, and more. 

December 8: The Towers is an epicenter for holiday cheer during the Narragansett Festival of Lights with caroling, tree lighting, and fireworks, plus a Jingle Bell fun-run on the beach. 

December 8-21: It’s the 12 rooms of Christmas at Clouds Hill Victorian House Museum, each decked out in seasonal splendor. 

December 10: Ocean State Pops Orchestra's Concert for Hope is a special Christmas concert (which invites the audience to join in on some caroling!) that benefits the Hope Alzheimer’s Center. 

December 13: Join Frosty Drew in watching the most merry and bright meteor shower of the year, outshining even the moon with a greenish hue.

December 13: Impersonators The Edward Twins bring Cher, Andrea Bocelli, Barbara Streisand, and more to Courthouse Center for the Arts' stage for a holiday themed show. 

December 13-14: The Jamestown Arts Center transforms into a winter arts and crafts market full of carefully chosen local vendors in all mediums.

December 14: Breakfast with Santa means cookie decorating, hot cocoa, holiday storytelling – don’t forget to snap a pic with the Big Guy in Red! 

December 19: It doesn’t get more festive than a Christmas Cocktail Cabaret. Cocktails, carols, and Christmas spirit at The Towers.

December 20: A night of traditional song, bell ringers, readings, and appearance by Old Saint Nick at Ocean House

December 21: The one-of-a-kind Irish Dance Holiday Spectacular brings The Kelly School of Irish Dance performers to a new stage. 

December 21-22: South County’s anticipated family music tradition Christmas Pops performed by Chorus of Westerly.

December 22: Find menorah lightings and holiday spirit across the region, like a Hannukah Party at Torat Yisrael; Hannukah Program at Congregation Beth David; and lighting of the village menorah in Pawtuxet Park.

December 31: Light up the night at Ninigret Park with a massive bonfire and munch on complimentary donuts and coffee. 

December 31: Eat, drink, and dance into 2020 at Weekapaug Inn with live music, cocktails, five-course tasting menu, and celebratory cheers with champagne when the clock strikes midnight!

December 31: It might be winter, but things heat up at Ocean House during their Havana Nights NYE gala to welcome the new year.