Christmas by Candlelight
Through Dec. 30: Christmas by Candlelight at Old Sturbridge Village is now open select Fridays, Saturday, and Sundays through Dec. 30. Unique, Village-made holiday items are available at the Miner Grant Store during the event, as well as the Ox & Yoke Mercantile, which opens daily at 10 a.m. and does not require admission to the Village. Visitors who would like to give the gift of something handmade can learn about crafts made throughout the Village, purchase craft kits for gift giving, or try their skill at hand-dipping candles. Attendees will find themselves enchanted as they step back in time to celebrate Christmas in New England in the 19th century. They can enter Village households to watch traditional craft-making demonstrations; stroll through the Christmas Tree Trail, featuring over 80 cut trees; and take in 4,000 candles and lanterns and more than 2,000 yards of garland dressing up the Village in its holiday finest. A lighting ceremony takes place at 4:30 p.m. each day. And Santa Claus himself makes a nightly appearance, allowing the little ones to tell him their Christmas wishes. Visit www.osv.org/event/christmas-by-candlelight to purchase tickets.
Community Giving Initiative
Through Dec. 31: Monson Savings Bank (MSB) is inviting the public to submit their votes for the bank’s 2024 Community Giving Initiative. For more than a decade, MSB has sought the help of community members to plan the bank’s community giving activities. Each year, the bank encourages the public to vote for the nonprofit charitable organizations they would like the bank to support during the coming year. Everyone is welcome to cast their vote online at www.monsonsavings.bank/cgi. Voters may provide the names of up to three organizations they would like MSB to donate to in 2024. The only requirements are that a nominee is designated a nonprofit and provides services within the bank’s geography. Monson Savings Bank pledges to support the 10 organizations that receive the highest number of votes. The top 10 vote recipients will be announced by mid-January. Visitors to the voting page can also view a compiled list of organizations that the bank has supported in years past, as well as previously nominated organizations.
Through Jan. 1: The 29th season of Bright Nights at Forest Park will be lit every night from 5 to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, Saturday, and holidays, which include Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day. Tickets are available at brightnights.org. Over the past 29 years, a lot has changed, but many iconic displays have stayed the same. The Cat in the Hat still waves at the entrance to Seuss Land as he has been doing since 1995. The deer in Winter Woods bound across the road. Toy Land is still a storied land for children to dream of living in. Santa’s Magical Forest continues to grow with activities, attractions, and Santa himself, who will be in residency through Christmas Eve. He has a cozy cottage to welcome visitors, listen to holiday wish lists, and pose for photos, whether visitors take their own or purchase a photo package.
Service Above Self Luncheon
Dec. 14: The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame and the Rotary Club of Springfield announced the honorees for the Westfield Bank 2023 Basketball Hall of Fame Rotary Service Above Self Luncheon, which will take place at noon on Center Court of the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. This year’s honorees are Dr. Mark Keroack, president and CEO of Baystate Health, and NBA Cares. In addition, Springfield Rotary announced this year’s Paul Harris Lifetime Achievement Award will be given to Paul Lambert, president and CEO of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra and long-serving Rotarian. Tickets to the event are available to purchase. Individual tickets ($90) and sponsorship opportunities for the luncheon are still available. For more information on sponsorships or to purchase tickets to the luncheon, contact Chelsea Johnson at (413) 231-5521 or [email protected].
Red Sox Winter Weekend
Jan. 19-20: Red Sox Winter Weekend will take place at MGM Springfield and its neighboring facility, the MassMutual Center. The event will include a welcome and introduction of participating Red Sox players and roundtable discussions on a variety of baseball topics, as well as autographs and photos. The weekend also includes a full baseball festival for fans of all ages. Weekend passes for Winter Weekend are available now at redsox.com/winterweekend. Passes provide access for the entire event and cost $95 for adults ($85 for season-ticket holders) and $40 for children age 14 and under ($35 for season-ticket holders). Children age 2 and under are free. Information about discounted hotel rooms in the area is available on the website. Mastercard is the preferred payment of the Boston Red Sox. Members of the 2024 Red Sox, including coaching staff, are invited to attend. Red Sox alumni, Wally the Green Monster, and his sister, Tessie, will also be in attendance. The weekend will begin Friday night with a welcome and introduction of the participating players. Throughout the day on Saturday, fans will have an opportunity to get autographs and take photos with players and alumni and see the 2004, 2007, 2013, and 2018 World Series trophies, as well as Red Sox artifacts such as Silver Slugger, Gold Glove, MVP, and and Cy Young awards. Family-friendly activities include Wiffle ball on the indoor field, a virtual-reality experience, batting and pitching cages, and the chance to meet Wally and Tessie. Panel discussions will also take place throughout the day on Saturday, with the return of the popular favorites including the kids-only press conference.