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Kennebunkport’s Christmas Prelude 2016

Not many towns can claim the kind of Christmas celebration that our near-neighbor to the north, Kennebunkport, does—and as a guest at one of our Ogunquit hotels or cottage, you’re in fabulously easy reach of the multiday party!

The world-famous resort town’s Christmas Prelude—enjoying its impressive 35th edition in 2016—has earned Kennebunkport a nod by HGTV as the “No. 2 Christmas Town in America,” and it’s something you definitely don’t want to miss during a Yuletide visit to the Southern Maine Coast.

A Christmas Prelude Overview

From the kickoff event—a sure-to-be-jolly Prelude Ale Release Party on December 1 from 4 to 6 PM at Federal Jack’s Brew Pub—to breakfast with Mr. and Mrs. Claus and the many other closing-day highlights on December 11, Christmas Prelude comes packed with seasonal fun for all ages.

You can explore the full schedule over at the official Christmas Prelude website, but let’s take a peek at a few of the featured attractions. On Friday, Dec. 2, you’ve got not one but two holiday tree-lighting ceremonies to enjoy. At 5:30 PM, the magnificent Christmas tree in Dock Square bursts into full glory to the sound of festive caroling from the Kennebunk High School Chamber Choir. And then, at 7 PM over in Cape Porpoise, another Christmas tree lights up—but, in a nod to one of the region’s most enduring economic and cultural touchstones, this one’s built of Maine lobster traps. (The Cape Porpoise ceremony will be soundtracked by the Church on the Cape Choir’s carols.)

And speaking of, Santa Claus arrives at Christmas Prelude on December 4 riding a Maine lobster boat alongside his Lobster Elves. Needless to say, that’s a sight to see—and there’ll be the chance for photos with the big man over at the Community House. On December 11, meanwhile, Santa makes his grand appearance at Cape Porpoise Square aboard a fire truck.

The much-loved Pooch Parade goes down on December 11 between Consolidated School to White Columns: another piece of can’t-miss Christmas Prelude pageantry, and followed up by an after-party at Scalawags.

Other Happenings

If you’ve still got some holiday shopping to take care of, no worries: Most days of the festival see craft fairs, including the Prelude Holiday Gift Market at River Tree Arts, which this year spotlights featured artists Marguerite and Eloise Genest.

And we haven’t even covered the live Nativities, the lavish feasts and wine tastings, the trolley outings, the cookie-making, and Merry TubaChristmas 2016 (December 4 from 3 to 4 PM at Nonantum Resort).

Come mark the holiday season with us here in Ogunquit—and make Kennebunkport’s Christmas Prelude the centerpiece of your celebrations!