Mark your calendar for holiday fun in Philadelphia's countryside November through January.
Get your group in the holiday spirit in Bucks County, PA! From spectacular light displays to historic Christmas traditions to a gingerbread house competition and much more, come experience the charm of countryside. Ideally located 75 miles south of New York City and 25 miles outside of Philadelphia, Bucks County is the perfect getaway destination for holiday fun!
Here are Bucks County's top 10 group-friendly happenings this holiday season beginning in November and running through the New Year.
1. Christmas at Byers' Choice, November 2-December 26, 2014 - Come to the Christmas capital of the county this holiday season! The fun kicks off with Grand Illumination on November 2-enjoy cookies and warm beverages as the grounds of Byers' Choice come to life with more 400,000 white Christmas lights. Then, on November 15 and 16, visit during Nativity Weekend to marvel at more than 250 Nativities from around the world in the Creche Room. On December 5 and 6, listen to the great-great grandson of Charles Dickens when he performs a reading of the classic "A Christmas Carol." Call ahead with your group of 20 or more to schedule a free "Decorating with Carolers®" demonstration during your visit.
2. Holiday Season at Peddler's Village, November 7, 2014- January 3, 2015 - The holidays get an early start at Peddler's Village, the 18th-century-style shopping village in the heart of Bucks County. Enjoy holiday fun in early November leading up to the Village's much anticipated Grand Illumination Celebration on November 21. Santa Claus will arrive on the Main Green at 6:15 p.m. sharp to flip the special switch and illuminate the Village with one million holiday lights! sharp to flip the special switch and illuminate the Village with one million holiday lights! Through the rest of the holiday season, visit with Santa at Giggleberry Fair, check out the Annual Gingerbread Competition and Display and attend the Christmas Festival December 6-7. Bringing a large group? There is plenty of motor coach parking at Peddler's Village and your group can plan an overnight stay in one of the the 70 guest rooms at the on-site Golden Plough Inn.
3. North Pole Express on the New Hope & Ivyland Railroad, November 21, 2014- January 4, 2015 (select dates) - Perfect for a youth group, you can bring the little ones as they live out their Christmas fantasy and hop aboard the North Pole Express for an unforgettable holiday journey! Don your coziest pajamas and relax on the heated, vintage passenger coaches as you and your group take a magical trip to the North Pole. The journey wouldn't be complete without a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, so tell the kids to bring their wish lists!
4. A Very Furry Christmas at Sesame Place®, November 22-December 31, 2014 - Everyone's favorite street will be decked out in holiday lights during this one-of-a-kind celebration! Sesame Place, the family-friendly amusement park dedicated to the award-winning children's television show Sesame Street® comes alive this holiday season with three special Christmas shows, dry rides, popular tunes and more! The street will glow with festivities and the illuminated Neighborhood Street Party Christmas Parade is a can't-miss daily event. Don't miss the opportunity to visit with Santa, enjoy delicious Christmas treats and get a head start on your shopping!
5. Holiday Light Show at Shady Brook Farm, November 22, 2014-January 4, 2015 - Millions of lights come together to illuminate acres of farmland during Shady Brook Farm's 20th Annual Holiday Light Show. Take a horse-drawn carriage ride through whimsical light displays filled with your favorite holiday characters or keep cozy and warm in the comfort of your own vehicle. Santa arrives by helicopter on November 28 to kick off the season! Large groups should visit in several cars so that everyone will be comfortable to drive through the twinkling lights! Motorcoaches are welcome to drive through the light show for $75.
6. Holidays at the Castles at the Mercer Museum and Fonthill Castle, November-January - Did you know Bucks County is home to two spectacular concrete castles, built by Henry Mercer more than 100 years ago? On December 9, the Mercer Museum partners with next-door neighbor, the James A. Michener Art Museum, to offer free admission to both institutions for a Holiday Open House. See Fonthill Castle decked out for the holidays on a regular tour or stop by on December 13 for their Holiday Lights Meander. From November 22 through January 4, stop by the Mercer Museum to visit the "Under the Tree: A Century of Holiday Trees and Toys" exhibit. Everyone can join in on the fun because there is plenty of motorcoach parking available and, between these two museums, there's something for everyone to enjoy!
7. Holiday House Tours and Craft Show at Pearl S. Buck House & Historic Site, November 11-December 30, 2014 - Groups are welcome to take a holiday tour of the farmhouse once lived in by Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winning author Pearl S. Buck. The historic site's Festival of Trees is on display November 11 through December 30. Be sure to stop by November 28 through December 7 for their annual Holiday Craft Show featuring one-stop-shopping from the region's best artisans and crafters.
8. 9th Annual Bucks County Holiday TreeFest, November 25, 2014-January 6, 2015 - The Bucks County Visitor Center in Bensalem will be filled with holiday cheer as 25 uniquely-themed holiday trees light up the Main Gallery during the Annual Holiday TreeFest. Each tree showcased is designed by a local business or non-profit organization. Great for groups of all kinds, throughout the six-week celebration, visitors can browse the decorated trees, enjoy musical entertainment, visit with Santa Claus himself and even bring the furry friends along for pet photos on select dates.
9. Holly Nights at Pennsbury Manor, December 4-5, 2014 - Get a feel for a real colonial Christmas this year at Pennsbury Manor during their annual Holly Nights event. A community tradition for more than 25 years, warm up beside crackling bonfires, listen to the beautiful sounds of Victorian carolers and take a candlelit tour of this historic Manor House built by Pennsylvania's founder William Penn in the early days of America.
10. Annual Christmas Day Crossing Rehearsal and Reenactment at Washington Crossing Historic Park, Rehearsal: December 7, 2014, Reenactment: December 25, 2014 - Are you a member of a group that loves American history? Witness history come to life on the shores of the Delaware River in Washington Crossing at the annual re-enactment of General George Washington's daring river-crossing on Christmas Night 1776. Attendees can watch more than 200 re-enactors row across the river in the same style of Durham boats Washington used in 1776. Can't make it on Christmas Day? Come to the dress rehearsal on December 7. Your group is sure to love watching the crossing as well as exploring the 500-acre park!
For more group-friendly events and itineraries, please check out VisitBucksCounty.com/Groups.
Contact: Jessica Lawlor
Visit Bucks County
215 639 0300 x 227
About Visit Bucks County
Visit Bucks County (VBC) is the official tourism promotion agency for Bucks County. The tourism office, with more than 450 tourism/hospitality partners throughout Bucks County, promotes all there is to see and do to potential visitors and residents. In addition to consumer travel, Visit Bucks County targets sports tournaments, motorcoach groups, meetings, special events and weddings. For more information on VBC activities call 1-800-836-BUCKS, visit VisitBucksCounty.com or stop by the Bucks County Visitor Center located at 3207 Street Road in Bensalem (adjacent to the entrance to PARX Casino). The Visitor Center is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. It is easily accessible from the Pennsylvania Turnpike, Route 1 and Interstate 95.