Newtown Youth & Family Services Holiday Festival to Be Merry & Bright on December 3rd

On Sunday, December 3rd, residents of Newtown and surrounding communities can return to Main Street for Newtown Youth & Family Services’ 38th Annual Holiday Festival, an event that’s become a much-loved tradition for families with more activities than ever before.

As one of the area’s longest running holiday events, the Holiday Festival includes activities for all ages that are spread out along Main Street in three primary locations: Edmond Town Hall, Trinity Episcopal Church and C.H. Booth Library. These locations will be connected by an Outdoor Holiday Market featuring local food merchants and vendors selling handmade goods. Also along Main Street are four beautiful homes that will be featured on the Historic House Tours. The December 3rd Festival on Main Street will be enjoyable for everyone, but the Holiday Festival fun does not start and end on that day only. The Online Silent Auction will begin on November 27th and run through December 9th and Newtown’s Family Scavenger Hunt will take place on December 2nd.

December 3rd Holiday Festival on Main Street

The Holiday Festival will take place on Sunday, December 3rd from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM. General admission Holiday Festival tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for senior citizens and $15 for children ages 2-12 if purchased by November 27th. Tickets will then increase to $23 for adults and $18 for children. Senior tickets will remain at $18.

A general admission ticket includes one performance of The Nutcracker Suite, shopping at the outdoor market, Festival of Trees viewing, photo opportunities with festive characters, children’s activities including arts & crafts, gingerbread house viewing and voting, a family magic show, silent auction bidding, cookie decorating with Mrs. Claus and one ride on the Historic Trolley Tour.

New this year, participants can enjoy the Historic House Tours & Holiday Tea. Visitors can view the first floor of four beautifully decorated houses along Main Street and learn about the history of each home. Tea and treats will be available in C.H. Booth Library for those who purchase a ticket for this activity. Tickets can be purchased for $20 for adults and $15 for children or can be added to the general Holiday Festival ticket for an additional $10 for adults and $5 for children.

For those who wish to only attend one performance of the ballet, separate tickets can be purchased for pre-sale at $12. The ticket price will increase to $15 after November 27th.

Tickets are available through the NYFS website starting November 1st at For additional assistance, contact the NYFS office at (203) 270 - 4335.

Following is a list of ALL Holiday Festival activities with dates and locations:

Letters to Santa - Nov. 10th - Dec. 14th, Mailbox located at The Toy Tree, 32 Church Hill Road, Newtown, CT. Sponsored by The Toy Tree.

Children can write a letter to Santa and receive a personalized handwritten response from the North Pole! Letters, along with a self-addressed stamped envelope should be brought to the Toy Tree and placed in the Letters to Santa mailbox. 

Elf Chats - Dec. 8th - Dec. 15th, Online. Sponsored by Mt. Pleasant Hospital for Animals and Pleasant Paws Pet Center.

Children can talk with EverGreen the Elf, live from the North Pole, during a 10-minute zoom call. During their scheduled visit, children will receive a personalized experience and can ask questions, see what EverGreen is working on, read a story, sing songs, etc. Elf Chats will be held between 5 – 8 PM on Friday, December 16th, Monday, December 11th, Wednesday, December 13th and Friday, December 15th. Cost is $15 for up to two children, $20 for three children, and $25 for four children. Not included in Holiday Festival ticket. Registration required.

Newtown’s Family Scavenger Hunt - Dec. 2nd, Starts at Newtown Youth & Family Services, 15 Berkshire Road, Sandy Hook, CT. Sponsored by Around Town Real Estate.

Bring the family together and embark on a scavenger hunt around town for a chance to win a great prize! Families will be asked to turn on their thinking caps for this Merry & Bright adventure as they reveal clues and complete tasks at various locations throughout Newtown. The event begins at 2 PM and is expected to last until 4 PM. Cost is $25 per team for up to 6 people per team. Not included in Holiday Festival ticket. Registration required.

Online Silent Auction - Nov. 27th - Dec. 9th, Online. Co-sponsored by Caraluzzi’s & Church Hill Village.

Businesses and members of the community donated gift baskets, experiences, products, gift certificates and more. View all items and submit bids using an online platform from the NYFS website. Bidding begins at 8 AM on Monday, November 27th and ends at 8 PM on Saturday, December 9th.

Gingerbread House Competition - Dec. 2nd – 9th, Online. Sponsored by Ingersoll Auto of Danbury in partnership with The Toy Tree.

Every year, members of our community design their own gingerbread houses to showcase at the Holiday Festival. Join in on the fun by creating an edible display AND/OR participate by voting! Voting will begin on Saturday, December 2nd at 10 AM and end on Saturday, December 9th at 8 PM using an online platform from the NYFS website. All entry criteria and drop-off times are available on the NYFS website. Prizes will be awarded to the 1st place winners in the adult, children’s and family categories. There is no cost to submit a display but donations are appreciated.

Gingerbread House Competition Entries

Anyone interested in entering the Gingerbread House Competition is encouraged to contact Susan Smith at or (203) 270 – 4335.

*Auction items and Gingerbread Houses will be on display at the Holiday Festival on December 3rd at Trinity Episcopal Church in the Glover Community Room.

Festival of Trees - Dec. 2nd & 3rd, Trinity Episcopal Church (Glover Community Room). Sponsored by Trinity Episcopal Church.

Win a decorated tree, wreath, basket, etc. to enjoy all season. Donated items will be on display and ready for raffle ticket sales on Saturday, December 2nd from 10 AM – 1 PM and Sunday, December 3rd 11 AM – 4 PM. All donation criteria and drop-off/pick-up times are available on the NYFS website. Winners will be picked at 4:15 PM on December 3rd. Cost is $3 for one ticket, $5 for five tickets, $15 for ten tickets and $25 for 25 tickets.

Festival of Trees Donations

NYFS is looking for decorated trees, wreaths, centerpieces, and gift baskets for the Festival of Trees. Decorating and donating an item to the Festival of Trees can be a fun family activity or an activity to do with friends. It’s also a great activity for scout programs and other youth organizations. Interested in participating? Visit the NYFS website or contact Susan Smith at or (203) 270 - 4335.

The Nutcracker Suite - Dec. 3rd, Edmond Town Hall (Theater). Co-sponsored by Sandbox Beach Grill.

Newtown Centre of Classic Ballet & Voice will perform two showings of the Nutcracker Suite at 12 and 2 PM. One showing is included in the general Holiday Festival ticket but you can also purchase Ballet only tickets. Registration is required.

Outdoor Holiday Market - Dec. 3rd, Along Main Street. Sponsored by Renewal by Andersen.

As you stroll to and from each Holiday Festival activity, take the opportunity to get some holiday shopping done while visiting with vendors showcasing handmade goods. You can also grab a bite to eat from one of the food merchants, listen to carolers, and take pictures with Santa. Included in the general Holiday Festival ticket.

Historic Trolley Tours - Dec. 3rd, Departs from outside Edmond Town Hall. Sponsored by Connie Widmann & Team.

Embark on an intimate tour of Main Street starting at Edmond Town Hall and proceeding down to The Pleasance park, stopping frequently to hear stories of what happened among the houses that line the historic street. Tours will depart at 11:10 AM, 11:45 AM, 12:20 PM, 12:55 PM, 1:30 PM, 2:05 PM, 2:40 PM and 3:15 PM. One ride is included in the general Holiday Festival ticket but there is limited availability, first come, first served.


Photos with Festival Friends – Dec. 3rd, Edmond Town Hall (Gym). Co-sponsored by Baum Braces and Macaroni Kid.

Meet the Grinch, Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Mrs. Claus and more as you strike your best pose in front of beautiful holiday scenery.

Concessions – Dec. 3rd, Edmond Town Hall (Lobby & Gym). Sponsored by Linde.

Grab a bite to eat at our concession stand to support NYFS! Enjoy pizza, hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, hot chocolate and more. All proceeds benefit the mental health needs of the Newtown community.


Historic House Tours – Dec. 3rd, Along Main Street. Sponsored by Eversource.

Holiday Tea – Dec. 3rd, C.H. Booth Library (Main Floor Gathering Room). Sponsored by Newtown Savings Bank.

View four beautiful and historically rich homes when you purchase the “Tea & Tour package.” This is a walking tour highlighting 23, 29, 32 and 59 Main Street. Along the way, listen to live holiday music and enjoy the smell of mulled apple cider, tea, freshly baked scones and tea breads. Not included in general Holiday Festival ticket. Registration required.

Cookies with Mrs. Claus – Dec. 3rd, Edmond Town Hall (Gym) Sponsored by Boost Bowls, in partnership with Church Hill Village.

Meet Mrs. Claus and decorate Holiday sugar cookies! We will provide frosting, sprinkles and other toppings so you can make your cookie just the way you like! Before devouring your treat, be sure to thank Mrs. Claus for all of her hard work in the kitchen!


Family Magic Shows – Dec. 3rd, Edmond Town Hall (Gym). Sponsored by Newtown Family Dentistry.

Get ready for fun and laughter as Magician Matt Matthews performs his best magic tricks! There will be two shows at 11:15 AM and 12:30 PM.

Kids Crafts – Dec. 3rd, C.H. Booth Library (Main Floor). Sponsored by Planters’ Choice Nursery.

Stop by and make your very own craft! From reindeer to gingerbread friends and snowmen to holiday bells, there is something for everyone!


The Holiday Festival would not be as successful without the support and generosity from our local businesses. We are grateful for all of our sponsors including: Premier sponsor Newtown Savings Bank, Diamond sponsor Eversource, Gold Star sponsors Connie Widman & Team, Linde, Sandbox Beach Grill, Mt. Pleasant Hospital for Animals and Pleasant Paws Pet Center.


NYFS needs your help to pull off this massive event! Without volunteers, the Holiday Festival cannot happen. Please visit the NYFS website or contact Susan Smith at or (203) 270 – 4335 for more information.

The Holiday Festival is the largest fundraiser for NYFS. The proceeds support autism programming, mental health and addiction counseling services, adolescent support groups, community services and much more for the children, teens, adults and seniors of Newtown and surrounding communities.


Submitted by Newtown, CT

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